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Pagan Christianity

Here’s a few facts about how some of our current traditions in church originated. They come from the book Pagan Christianity and I think do a good job of provoking thought as to why we do what we do. What would things look like if we took these standards out? Could we still do ministry? Would we be as effective? It’s an interesting conversation to have.

  • Church buildings were initially constructed under the Roman emperor Constantine, around 327. The early Christian church met in homes.
  • The pulpit was a piece of stagecraft borrowed from Greek culture in which professional speakers delivered monologues in public debates. There is no evidence that Jesus, the apostles, or other leaders in the early Church used a pulpit; it seems to have been introduced into Christian circles in the mid-third century.
  • The order of worship originated in the Roman Catholic Mass under the leadership of Pope Gregory in the sixth century.
  • Preaching a sermon to an audience was ushered into the church world late in the second century. Sermons were an extension of the activity of the Greek sophists, who had mastered the art of rhetorical oratory.
  • There were no pastors, as an official or director of a group of believers, until sometime in the second century. That was eventually furthered by the practice of ordination, which was based upon the prevailing Roman custom of appointing men to public office.
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Categories: Books, Faith, Youth Workers
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