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The 100 Most Important Events in Christian History Paperback – March 1, 1998

4.5 out of 5 stars 46 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

J. Stephen Lang is the author of nearly thirty books, including the extremely successful Complete Book of Bible Trivia, which has sold over 600,000 copies.

Randy Petersen has written about thirty books and coauthored the two popular devotional books One Year Book of Psalms and One Year Book of Hymns with his father, William J. Petersen. He lives in Westville, New Jersey.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Revell; New edition (March 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800756444
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800756444
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #42,797 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Brian Douglas on November 24, 2001
Format: Paperback
From the Fire in Rome in AD64 to the modern Chinese church, this book is an excellent overview of the history of the church and an excellent tool for those with little background in church history. If you're looking for a comprehensive examination of the church through the ages, this isn't the book for you - stick to Pelikan or one of the others. But if you want to see the flow of events throughout Christian history in just 200 pages, this is as good as it gets!
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Granted, how do you pack approximately 1,970 years into two pages. There is a survey portion of information available about each of the 100 events, much as you might only recieve 1 page about Charles DeGaul in a World History textbook.
However, this book is a great jumping off point for someone who would like to study Christian history more in depth. Through the process of reading this book, you can discover people and events that particularly interest you and search deeper into those topics, rather than haphazardly grabbing a 20 volume set of Christian History and flipping.
Also, I enjoyed this book because it did not limit itself to the 100 most important PEOPLE. I enjoyed reading about the printing press, and the Spanish Inquisition, as well as Charles Spurgeon and Hudson Taylor.
*****Final Thoughts*****
This book is a great introduction to Christian history that will allow you to find events and people you want to study more in-depth. It is a great springboard for study.
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Format: Paperback
Whether you're a church scholar, a new Christian yearning to know the history of your faith, or a lover of all things historical, this book brings you everything you need!
The momentous events that have shaped Christianity since Christ's resurrection are presented in a timeline format, which makes it a smooth-flowing book. Reducing all of the world's Christianity-influenced events to "merely" 100 must have been quite a daunting task, with many notable events hitting the cutting-room floor. But I believe the choices were excellent, and the reader will be rewarded with better knowledge and a deeper understanding of Church history.
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Excellent, anecdote-packed book for the Christian layperson! However, the necessity of choosing only 100 events leaves many gaps in the reader's knowledge. This book is best read alongside a book such as _Christian History Made Easy_ (for which A. Kenneth Curtis wrote the foreword), to fill in the gaps.
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The author begins by telling his readers that the 100 events chosen are not intended to demean other events that are not included.

This book does a fantastic job of condensing the major events of 2000 years into 200 pages. If you are looking for a "crash course" in church history, this is the one. It reminds me of 2000 years of cliff notes in one volume. Each event is given around two pages of information, which is just enough to wet your appetite to dig deeper. This is a good intro and I would recommend reading it in tandem with Church History In Plain Language or A Global History of Christians.
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This was an excellent read and a truly great survey of church history. There were two things I found especially significant from the authors' take on how to prepare this work: (1) they include things one would not immediately recognize as a major contributor to church history (ex. The Synod of Whitby, 664; the births of Johann Sebastian Bach and George Frederic Handel, 1685); and (2) they are very up-front with the reader that their word is in no way final on the 100 most important events in church history. They actually even encourage readers' responses for future editions in the preface.

I'm not a huge fan of their use of "legend" (ex. Boniface chopping down the Thundering Tree in Germany, 716; or Martin Luther giving his "Here I Stand" speech at the Diet of Worms, 1521. ... To clarify, the legend was speaking of the speech only; the authors hold to the true historical event that Luther was present and on trial at the Diet of Worms in 1521). Thankfully, however, the uses of the "legend" word were only rare, isolated instances.

All in all, it really is an easy but informative read beginning from 64 when Rome was set ablaze with fire up through 1966-1976 when the church in China is seeing major significant growth. Their records of key missionaries were also much appreciated and helpful.

I don't know anything about the background of the authors; but I certainly appreciate their work, as there really is a need for a true "layman's guide" to church history. Layman or not, I believe this work will be useful to all who want a general, abridged survey of the history of the Christian Church.
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Format: Paperback
I have normal complaints about events not on the list, but all in all, it is a very good place to start. I think it is very helpful in identifying recoccuring patterns in church history. The rise of monastic orders, the decline of monastic orders, the tension between freedom of worship in letting the Spirit move and a structure to move within. These ongoing patterns are mentioned again and again. The authors are not very critical in some spots, where they should be. Charles Finney, even though he belongs on the list, was a heretic and should be mentioned as such. The negative ramifications of his thought and practices are not explored. Likewise, the significance of World War I in destroying postmillenialism and the significance of the Holocaust are not explored. But what it does, it does well. It gives you a good cursory overview of church history by giving you a lot of short vinettes. I highly recommend it, but I would not rely on it solely.
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