Search GlobalChristians

Church History


Church History Notes and PowerPoints (Calvary Chapel South Bay Course).

Syllabus - doc file

How The Denominations Came About (Powerpoint)

Denominations Diagram (PDF)

First Century - The Gospel Spreads, The Challenge of Judaism (PowerPoint)

Second Century - The Challenge of Greek Philosophy (PowerPoint)

Third & Fourth Centuries- Heresies & Persecution (PowerPoint)

Constantine, Creeds and Tradition (PowerPoint)

AD 500 - 1500 The Middle Ages, The Decline Of Christianity (PowerPoint)


Key Readings in Church History takes students through English translations of 20 original Church History texts from the Creeds to Carey and discusses them online.

Key Readings is a free online course based on reading and encountering important Church History documents. Classes may select the readings from the list below - at least 5 must be selected from each of the three sections and twenty readings in all must be discussed.

Key Readings In Church History is a student level AIBI course designed primarily for those who wish to study for the ministry. It is fairly academic in nature.

Assessment: Write a 1500 word (4 page) term paper on: "An in-depth study of two of the readings giving their cultural and historical context and their significance for Christian theology."
Term papers should be scripturally based and demonstrate knowledge, understanding and application of the course material.

Term papers should be done in MS-Word or similar format (Wordperfect, RTF , PDF) and may be sent to the lecturer at any time. On completion of the term paper you will be issued with a "Certificate of Completion" similar to those for in-service courses in the workplace. Contact the Lecturer

The course is free but donations are appreciated.


The aim of Key Readings In Church History is to get bible students to read and encounter the best minds of ages other than our own and to read the actual source documents that have formed the Christian Church. So, for instance instead of just learning about Luther - you get to read Luther's "Ninety-Five Theses". You will probably need a book such as The Lion Handbook of Church History as a comapion volume to give you some background on the author and their times.

Note: The aim is to read and encounter the texts, thus this is not a line by line study of the individual texts but rather a discussion of them as works in their historical context. Some works are quite long, students are not expected to read all of George Fox's Journal for instance but to read a chapter here and there and "get the gist of it" so they can discuss it in class.

Selecting just twenty readings from all of Church History is a very difficult task so what I have done is compiled a long list in three sections (at right) - Early Church History, Medieaval and Mystical and Christian Classics. Each class group can steer its own path to some extent by selecting the ones they wish to study from the list. The limitation isthat at least five must be studied from each of the main sections. Those that I deem to be of most importance have asterisks next to them as a guide.

This course is meant to be an exploration, to be fun, to be a source of growth, wonder and astonishment. A time of encountering spiritual genius and trying to understand it in its historical context.


The most important documents are marked with an asterisk

Early Church - Creeds & Controversies

Apostle's Creed* pdf version

Documents from the Seven Ecumenical Councils

Creed of Chalcedon*

Nicene Creedpdf version

Nicene Creed 381AD version   pdf version

Gospel of Barnabas

Shepherd of Hermas

The Didache*  pdf booklet version   pdftranslation version


Martyrdom of Polycarp*

1 Clement

2 Clement

Athanasius On The Incarnation (trans by. C.S.Lewis)   pdf version



Testament of St. Francis

Rule of St. Francis *   pdf version

St. Francis of Assisi - Prayers   pdf version

Some Quotes from the Summa (Aquinas) *

St John of The Cross (various writings) *

William of Ockham *

Ignatius Loyola - Exercises *


Blaise Pascal - Pensees *

Boethius - Consolation of Philosophy  pdf version

George Fox - Journal *

William Booth - Darkest England *

William Booth - Vision   pdf version

Luther's Preface of Paul's Epistle To The Romans *

Luther - 95 Theses *

Luther - Christ Our Great High Priest

Jonathon Edwards- Sinners In The Hands Of An Angry God *   pdf version

Jonathon Edwards - Treatise Of Religious Affections *

William Carey - Enquiry *

Hudson Taylor - Union and Communion *

Spurgeon - All of Grace

Dostoevsky - Review

Alexander Solzhenistsyn - A World Split Apart *   pdf version

Martin Luther King - I Have A Dream *   pdf version