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TITLE OF UNIT: HISTORY OF CHRISTIANITY
- The lesson introduces student teachers to the roots of Christianity. They will be exposed to course learning indicators including expectations for the assessment components. Through interactive pedagogies, student teachers will be exposed to the history of Christianity, how it emerged and spread to Africa and eventually, to Ghana.
STUDENT TEACHERS’ PREVIOUS KNOWLEDGE
- It is assumed student teachers know bits and pieces of history of Christianity through their participation as religious practitioners and or observers of Christian rituals both at school and in the community.
POSSIBLE BARRIERS TO LEARNING IN THE LESSON
- Student teachers might hold some misconceptions of the history of Christianity that ought to be identified and corrected.
MODE OF LESSON DELIVERY
- Asynchronous, via METCOE LMS.
OVERARCHING LEARNING OUTCOME
- The course is intended to give student teachers opportunity to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the history of Christianity as a religion and how it relates to their professional practices as RME teachers (NTS1a, 2c, NTECF, pg. 20, NTS 1e)
LEARNING OUTCOMES: By the end of the lesson, student teachers will be able to:
- Recount the history of Christianity from its inception in Palestine and its spread to Africa.
- Evaluate the role of various missionary groups in the planting and reception of Christianity in Ghana.
- Analyse the initial pattern of settlements of Christian denominations during the late 19th and early 20th century.
Background to Christianity
- Christianity is the religion that is based on the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The religion, in its first three centuries, grew from a small group of committed believers with no uniform structure to a worldwide movement with organized structures of management and established norms of behaviour.
- Christian religion came into being in the Roman Empire and it was this same empire that the religion lived the first 500 years of its existence.
- The root of Christianity reached deeply into the history and religion of Israel.
Christianity emerged as a sect within Judaism and most, if not all the earliest Christians were Jews by nationality, religion and culture.
- Read more from this link: https://www.britannica.com/topic/Christianity
- Both Jews and Christians believe in one God, the Creator and Judge of the world. They both accept providence, free will and the issue of salvation. Without the Hebrew Bible, Christians would have been unable to make sense of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
- Jewish cultic practices such as prophesy, scripture reading, singing of hymns and prayer, belief in priesthoods, messiah, angels, etc. can be identified as some links between Christianity and Judaism.
- Please watch this video from the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LvL3YXa0n2M
- Watch this video
Spread of Christianity in the 1st Century
- The Great Commission command was heeded to after the ascension of Jesus; the Church was formed, characterised by communal living (Acts chapter 2-4).
- The Church extended from Jerusalem to other parts in Palestine (i.e., Damascus, Asia Minor, Africa, Rome, Spain, etc.)
- The era of the Church Fathers witnessed the formation of Christian doctrines, theology, philosophy, apologetics, etc.)
Spread of Christianity in Ghana
- There were various attempts at introducing Christianity to the Gold Coast since the 15th century but it was the 19th century that it began to gain root and chalk successes.
- Basel Mission Society from Basel in Switzerland came to the Gold Coast to propagate the gospel in 1828. The mission was successful. Later on, the Church established by the mission developed to become the Presbyterian Church in 1926.
- In 1835, the Wesleyan Methodist Mission Society from England came to the Gold Coast to also preach the gospel. This mission eventually became autonomous in 1961.
- The Breman Missionary Society from Northern Germany came to the Gold Coast to propagate the gospel in 1847. It later became the Ewe Presbyterian Church and in 1954, it changed its name to the Evangelical Presbyterian Church.
- Between 1904 and 1965 other new missions were introduced into Gold Coast particularly from North America. By 1960 for example, as many as 24 new missions had been introduced into the country. Some of these new missions are three groups of Baptist from the U.S.A., two branches of the Apostolic Church from Britain and the U.S.A., then the Assemblies of God followed in 1935. Others that came were the Church of Christ, Jehovah’s witnesses, SDA and the Lutheran etc.
ASSIGNMENT : First Assignment MARKS : 20 DURATION : 6 days