Primary Source Archives
Gale Primary Sources contains archives and articles that present researchers with firsthand content. Users can access historical documents, archives, and manuscripts to examine topics and create reports.
Get the information you need on the topic of Christianity. According to the Pew Research Center, as of 2015, Christianity is the world religion with the most followers globally. Christianity is one of three primary monotheistic faiths, a religion that believes in one God, along with Judaism and Islam.
There are three primary branches of Christianity: Eastern Orthodox Christianity, Roman Catholicism, and Protestantism. There are many denominations, or subgroups, within these branches, including Baptist, Methodism, Lutheranism, Calvinism, Pentecostalism, Anglicanism, Presbyterianism, and Adventism. Christians can also be grouped more broadly across denominations according to their style of worship or focus of their beliefs. For example, the term evangelicals describes Christians who focus on the importance of a salvation experience (sometimes referred to as being “born again” or “being saved”) and spreading the gospel to non-Christians.
Christianity began in the first century CE when followers of the Jewish teacher known as Jesus of Nazareth, in the area of present-day Israel, began to teach that Jesus was the Christ, or Messiah. Jesus’ disciples preached that he was the one described in the books of prophecy as the Son of God who would die to atone for the sins of the world.
The foundational belief of Christianity is that Jesus Christ was crucified and then rose from the dead three days later, an event commemorated in the observance of Easter. The Christian Bible—which is a collection of ancient Hebrew writings, Jesus’ teachings as compiled by his disciples, and letters written by church leaders known as apostles to various early churches and individuals—is the source of Christian beliefs.
A wide range of materials are available, whether one is seeking to research Christian history and the historical Jesus or discover modern guides to living the faith. Scholars, Bible study members, people considering a role in ministry, and students of religious studies will benefit from the material offered. Those who want to learn more about Catholic, Protestant, and Eastern Orthodox traditions will find relevant texts for historical study. Followers of Christ who are looking for information on subject areas such as discipleship and prayer will find resources to enhance their personal spiritual enrichment.
Gale offers a wealth of sources that explore topics including the New Testament, the Reformation, the Church Fathers, Christian life, and the diversity of World Christianity. Many will recognize such varied figures as Flavius Josephus, Athanasius, John Wesley, Watchman Nee, Origen, and Polycarp. Users will find scholarly journals, monographs, eBooks, peer-reviewed articles, and primary sources on a vast array of subjects within the study of the Christian tradition.
Christian groups, like those from other faiths, are leveraging modern tools to reach their followers. The COVID-19 pandemic has elevated the role of databases not only for educational purposes but also for religious expression. Church services, sermons, and devotions have moved online and are becoming more common across denominations. Ministering to the community, taking part in biblical studies, and holding prayer groups can all take place on the internet.
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