The Shape of Christian History
Continuity and Diversity in the Global Church
- ISBN: 9781514002223
- Published By: InterVarsity Press
- Published: June 2022
While understanding history has always been an essential task for God's people, rapid changes within the past two generations of Christianity have challenged many of our assumptions and methods for studying the past. How should thoughtful Christians—and especially historians and missiologists—make sense of global Christianity as an unfolding historical movement?
Scott Sunquist invites readers to join him for a capstone course in historical thinking from a master teacher. Highlighting both the continuity and the diversity within the Christian movement over the centuries, he identifies three key concepts for framing church history: time, cross, and glory. These themes shed light to help us discern how the Jesus movement developed from the first century to the present, through an explosion of contextual expressions. Tracing these concepts through the centuries, we learn from the stories of Christians reflecting the glories of God's kingdom—and from their failures.
Filled with historical case studies and stories from Sunquist's teaching around the world, The Shape of Christian History offers a framework for how to read and write church history. Even more, it demonstrates how the study of history illuminates God's mission in the world and sharpens our understanding of how to participate in that mission faithfully.