Paul McKechnie explores how Christianity grew and expanded in Roman Asia over the first three centuries of the religion. Focusing on key individuals, such as Aberkios (Avircius Marcellus) of Hierapolis, he assesses the pivotal role played by Early Christian preachers who, in imitation of Paul of Tarsus, attracted converts through charismatic preaching. By the early fourth century, they had brought many cities and rural communities to a tipping point at which they were ready to move under a 'Christian canopy' and push polytheistic Greco-Roman religion to the margins. This volume brings new clarity of our understanding of how the Christian church grew and thrived in Asia Minor, simultaneously changing Roman society and being changed by it. Combining patristic evidence with the archaeological and epigraphic record, McKechnie's study creates a strong factual and chronological framework to the study of Christianization, while bringing Church History and Roman history more closely together.
- Church history