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Portal:Christianity

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Christianity is an Abrahamic monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth. It is the world's largest religion with roughly 2.38 billion followers representing one-third of the global population. Its adherents, known as Christians, are estimated to make up a majority of the population in 157 countries and territories and are a minority in all others.

The creeds of various Christian denominations, such as the Apostle's creed, generally hold in common Jesus as the Son of God—the Logos incarnated—who ministered, suffered, and died on a cross, but rose from the dead for the salvation of mankind. This is referred to as the gospel. Describing Jesus' life and teachings are the four canonical gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, with the Old Testament as the gospel's respected background.

By the second century, Christianity had broadened beyond the traditional Christology of the New Testament to face challenges from groups such as the Gnostics, with different views of Jesus and his mission; this created early controversy, disagreement, and division. Such disagreements led to the development of religious tolerance and diversity in the Reformation era. Christianity remains culturally diverse into the modern day. This diversity exists within its Western and Eastern branches, as well as in its doctrines concerning justification of sin and the nature of salvation, Christianity's origins, the election of common people into the clergy, and the study of Christ as represented by Mormonism, Jehovah's Witnesses, Christian Scientists and other non-traditional believers. (Full article...)

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First edition cover (1843)

A Christmas Carol. In Prose. Being a Ghost Story of Christmas, commonly known as A Christmas Carol, is a novella by Charles Dickens, first published in London by Chapman & Hall in 1843 and illustrated by John Leech. A Christmas Carol recounts the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, an elderly miser who is visited by the ghost of his former business partner Jacob Marley and the spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come. After their visits, Scrooge is transformed into a kinder, gentler man.

Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol during a period when the British were exploring and re-evaluating past Christmas traditions, including carols, and newer customs such as Christmas cards and Christmas trees. He was influenced by the experiences of his own youth and by the Christmas stories of other authors, including Washington Irving and Douglas Jerrold. Dickens had written three Christmas stories prior to the novella, and was inspired following a visit to the Field Lane Ragged School, one of several establishments for London's street children. The treatment of the poor and the ability of a selfish man to redeem himself by transforming into a more sympathetic character are the key themes of the story. There is discussion among academics as to whether this is a fully secular story, or if it is a Christian allegory. (Full article...)
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Billy Sunday (1921)

William Ashley "Billy" Sunday (November 19, 1862 – November 6, 1935) was an American outfielder in baseball's National League and widely considered the most influential American evangelist during the first two decades of the 20th century.

Born into poverty in Iowa, Sunday spent some years at the Iowa Soldiers' Orphans' Home before working at odd jobs and playing for local running and baseball teams. His speed and agility provided him the opportunity to play baseball in the major leagues for eight years, where he was an average hitter and a good fielder known for his base-running. (Full article...)
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Saint Paul Writing His Epistles
Credit: User:Mathiasrex

The Pauline epistles, Epistles of Paul, or Letters of Paul, are the thirteen New Testament books which have the name Paul (Παῦλος) as the first word, hence claiming authorship by Paul the Apostle. Among these letters are some of the earliest extant Christian documents. They provide an insight into the beliefs and controversies of early Christianity and as part of the canon of the New Testament they are foundational texts for both Christian theology and ethics.

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Selected scripture

Sixth century mosaic of the Raising of Lazaru in the church of Sant'Apollinare Nuovo, Ravenna, Italy
Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus from Bethany, of the village of Mary and her sister, Martha. It was that Mary who had anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother, Lazarus, was sick. The sisters therefore sent to him, saying, “Lord, behold, he for whom you have great affection is sick.” But when Jesus heard it, he said, “This sickness is not to death, but for the glory of God, that God’s Son may be glorified by it.” Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When therefore he heard that he was sick, he stayed two days in the place where he was. Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let’s go into Judea again.”
The disciples told him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just trying to stone you, and are you going there again?”
Jesus answered, “Aren’t there twelve hours of daylight? If a man walks in the day, he doesn’t stumble, because he sees the light of this world.
But if a man walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light isn’t in him.” He said these things, and after that, he said to them, “Our friend, Lazarus, has fallen asleep, but I am going so that I may awake him out of sleep.”
The disciples therefore said, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.”
Now Jesus had spoken of his death, but they thought that he spoke of taking rest in sleep. So Jesus said to them plainly then, “Lazarus is dead. I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, so that you may believe. Nevertheless, let’s go to him.”
Thomas therefore, who is called Didymus, said to his fellow disciples, “Let’s go also, that we may die with him.”
So when Jesus came, he found that he had been in the tomb four days already. Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, about fifteen stadia away. Many of the Jews had joined the women around Martha and Mary, to console them concerning their brother. Then when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, but Mary stayed in the house. Therefore Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you would have been here, my brother wouldn’t have died. Even now I know that, whatever you ask of God, God will give you.” Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”
Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will still live, even if he dies. Whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”
She said to him, “Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Christ, God’s Son, he who comes into the world.”
When she had said this, she went away, and called Mary, her sister, secretly, saying, “The Teacher is here, and is calling you.”
When she heard this, she arose quickly, and went to him. Now Jesus had not yet come into the village, but was in the place where Martha met him.
Then the Jews who were with her in the house, and were consoling her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up quickly and went out, followed her, saying, “She is going to the tomb to weep there.” Therefore when Mary came to where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying to him, “Lord, if you would have been here, my brother wouldn’t have died.”
When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews weeping who came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled, and said, “Where have you laid him?”
They told him, “Lord, come and see.”
Jesus wept.
The Jews therefore said, “See how much affection he had for him!”
Some of them said, “Couldn’t this man, who opened the eyes of him who was blind, have also kept this man from dying?”
Jesus therefore, again groaning in himself, came to the tomb. Now it was a cave, and a stone lay against it. Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”
Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.”
Jesus said to her, “Didn’t I tell you that if you believed, you would see God’s glory?”
So they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, “Father, I thank you that you listened to me. I know that you always listen to me, but because of the multitude that stands around I said this, that they may believe that you sent me.” When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!”
He who was dead came out, bound hand and foot with wrappings, and his face was wrapped around with a cloth.
Jesus said to them, “Free him, and let him go.”

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