The roots of Christianity can be traced back to the New Testament since the Old Testament does not mark the beginning of Christianity. It was only after Jesus’ early ministry, death for the sins of humanity, and resurrection that the origin of Christianity became evident. The New Testament provides us with insights into the place of origin for Christianity.

The New Testament

Christianity’s origin can be traced back to the New Testament after Jesus’ resurrection, when people first began to believe in Him. These initial believers were His disciples, who were led by Jesus to Bethany, a town near Jerusalem, before He ascended into heaven (Luke 24:51). While some scholars believe that the origin of Christianity could be in Judaea or Caesarea, Jerusalem is the most plausible place as it is a city of great historical and spiritual significance in both the Old and New Testaments.

However, the term “Christian” was first used to refer to believers in Antioch (Acts 11:26) even though Christianity had already begun before then. This was evident during the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2 when the Holy Spirit descended and filled the church. This was a significant day in the history of both believers and unbelievers, as individuals began speaking in tongues, the Holy Spirit indwelled believers, and Peter preached the gospel.

While some argue that Antioch is the origin of Christianity, it had already begun when Jesus was resurrected. His resurrection was a pivotal moment in history as it proved that He was God, as no mere man could rise from the dead. Jesus’ tomb was in a garden in Jerusalem, and it was in this city that the first believers would have been when they believed in Him. The women who came to the tomb on the Monday after Jesus was crucified saw that it was empty, and this may have been the moment that they believed in Him. Similarly, when John and Peter saw the empty tomb, they may have believed before seeing the resurrected Lord. Therefore, Jerusalem is the most likely place of origin for Christianity.

However, Christianity did not remain in Jerusalem. Before Jesus ascended into heaven, He gave His disciples the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20), telling them to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything He had commanded them. This commandment was crucial in spreading Christianity beyond Jerusalem and into all corners of the world.

In conclusion, Christianity’s origin can be traced back to the New Testament after Jesus’ resurrection. The first believers would have been in Jerusalem, although the term “Christian” was first used in Antioch. Jerusalem is the most likely place of origin for Christianity as it was where the women and disciples first saw the empty tomb and may have believed in Jesus. However, Christianity did not remain in Jerusalem but spread throughout the world as a result of the Great Commission.

Church History

Looking back at church history, we can see how the disciples traveled to various places worldwide to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. In the New Testament, we also witness how the apostle Paul took the gospel to most of the known world of that time.

Throughout his numerous missionary journeys, Paul traveled to many regions to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus. Among the places he visited were Cyprus, Pamphylia, Phrygia, Lycaonia, and Galatia.

We can also identify the many locations where Paul took the gospel by reading the epistles he wrote. It is evident that Paul took the Gospel to many places throughout his life.

Similarly, God desires us to spread the gospel message to all nations. There are countless unreached people groups that have never heard of Jesus Christ or His message of salvation.

As believers, it is our responsibility to take the gospel to every person, to help them know Christ as well. Although missionary work may be challenging, it is also very fulfilling.

To know that we are helping others to understand Jesus and grow in their relationship with Him is the greatest reward. Sharing the gospel does not require a “calling”; instead, we are all commanded to follow the Great Commission and share the gospel message.

Disobeying the Great Commission means we are disobeying God. Although not everyone can participate in an international mission trip, everyone has multiple opportunities every day to build relationships with others and share the gospel.

Whether it is your neighbor, a foreign exchange student, or someone at the coffee shop, there are numerous individuals you can share the gospel with.

If you get the chance to go on an international mission trip, take it. However, if you do not get the opportunity, do not be discouraged. You can still share the gospel with those around you.

What is crucial is that we obey God’s command to share the gospel with everyone. Though sharing the gospel may be frightening at times, God is always willing to assist if we ask for His help.

He enjoys hearing from us and is more than willing to provide us with opportunities to share the gospel. You can pray to God today and ask Him to give you opportunities to share the gospel with others.

Why Does This Matter?

It is probable that Jerusalem is the birthplace of Christianity, as indicated by biblical accounts of people believing in Jesus. Jerusalem is particularly significant as it is where Jesus was resurrected. However, there are varying opinions among scholars, as the Bible does not explicitly state where Christianity originated.

While the term “Christian” was first used elsewhere, the biblical texts suggest that Jerusalem is the most likely place where Christianity began. Nevertheless, Christianity did not remain confined to Jerusalem. The gospel spread across the world through the disciples and other followers of Christ.

Similarly, we are called to obey the Great Commission and share the gospel with those who are lost. We may not have the opportunity to travel to far-off places, but we can still share the gospel with those around us. It is our individual responsibility to fulfill this mandate.


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