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By Rodney Stark

Celebrated non secular and social historian Rodney Stark lines the intense upward thrust of Christianity via its such a lot pivotal and debatable moments to provide clean viewpoint at the background of the world’s biggest faith. In The Triumph of Christianity, the writer of God’s Battalions and The upward push of Christianity gathers and refines a long time of robust examine and discovery into one targeted, concise, and hugely readable quantity that explores Christianity’s most vital episodes. the original layout of Triumph of Christianity permits Stark to prevent dense chronologies and hard again tales, bringing readers correct to the guts of Christian history’s most important controversies and enduring classes.

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Extra resources for The Triumph of Christianity: How the Jesus Movement Became the World's Largest Religion

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In fact, only as a consequence of prayer and commitment is it possible to work out an authentic and respectful discourse 28 The task and content of liberation theology about G o d . Through commitment, concretely commitment towards the poor, do we find the Lord (cf. M a t t . 2 5 . 3 1 - 4 6 ) ; but at the same time this discovery deepens and renders more genuine our solidarity with the poor. Contemplation and commitment in human history are fundamental dimensions o f Christian existence; in consequence, they cannot be avoided in the understanding of faith.

But in many of the countries which gained independence the leadership failed to foster democratic participation and space. Dictatorial set-ups developed rather soon, as alienation of the disappointed masses and state repression grew side by side. Dictatorship took different forms, from military regimes 40 Liberation theology in Asia in Indonesia, Pakistan and Burma, to martial law regimes in the Philippines (under Marcos) and South Korea or one-party dictatorship as in Taiwan. T h e countries where the anti-imperialist struggle had been led by communist parties came under the dictatorial rule o f the vanguard party which in the case of Kampuchea established a most murderous regime.

This became the hallmark of our experience and reflection at the end of the 1 9 7 0 s (for example, in Peru and Central America), and has become the catalyst for our endeavour and commitment. It helped us recover an evangelical perspective (so present in men like Las Casas in the sixteenth The task and content of liberation theology century) on the idolatrous character of profit propagated by a 'savage capitalism' that crushes the dignity of human beings under foot, turning them into the victims of a cruel and sacrilegious cult.

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