Book review: Christian History Made Easy

by Timothy Paul Jones, PhD

★★★★

This beautiful full-color book highlights the major personalities in Christian development over the last 2,000 years … from A.D. 64 to 2009.

It’s a short book, so I confess I felt a little frustrated at the lack of depth. The book takes on a little too big a topic for 188 pages of text, and religion is a topic where oversimplifying by bouncing along the surface can distort as much as elucidate. Therefore, to get the full benefit of the book, treat it like an instruction course and take advantage of the internet research suggestions peppered throughout the text. But for my money (for a lot more money, I’m sure) I’d love to have 600 pages between the covers of this one.

One other minor frustration: Jones is a Southern Baptist whose subtle preaching permeates the book. For example, Deism is at least twice referred to as a false doctrine. This is probably just a personal issue, but I find it easier to trust a scholar who does a better job of hiding his own religious bias.

With my complaints out of the way, let me say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading the text! It’s a fun read, full of tidbits from history and helpful explanations of Christian terms. Every Christian should know at least the basics of Church history, and I definitely recommend this book as an entertaining stepping stone to whet your appetite for further in-depth reading.

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