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Book Review


Church History In Plain Language

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Dr. Bruce Shelley is Senior Professor of Church History and Historical Theology at Denver Theological Seminary.  

Among his previous books are: The Church: God's People; Evangelicalism in America; and The Cross and the Flame.  

Dr, Shelley holds the M.Div. degree from Fuller Theological Seminary and the Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. ______________

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Published by NELSON ______________

Author: Bruce L. Shelley (Foreword by Mark Knoll)

Updated 2nd Edition

The Story of the Church for Today's Readers

"Graciousness and clarity have never been thick on the ground in the world -- nor in the church.  Their presence here, as in the intellectual and personal gift of a remarkably faithful scholar, is a boon to us all."

-Dr. Mark Knoll, Wheaton College

Church History Comes Alive

Dr. Bruce Shelley makes church history come alive in this classic book that has become not only the first choice of many laypeople and church leaders but the standard text in many college classrooms over the nation.  

What separates Dr. Shelley's book from others is its clarity, both of language and organization. Church History In Plain Language treats history as the story of people -- their motivations, the issues they grapple with, the decisions they make -- and the result is that history reads like a story, almost as dramatic and moving as a novel.

Yet there is no fiction here.  Dr. Shelley is a respected scholar whose work is painstakingly researched and carefully crafted for historical accuracy.

Divides the Christian Story Into Eight Parts: the Eight Great Ages of the Church

Church History In Plain Language makes history easy to follow and easy to retain by dividing the Christian story into eight parts, each part one of the great ages of the church:

  • The Age of Jesus and the Apostles

  • The Age of Catholic Christianity

  • The Age of the Christian Roman Empire

  • The Christian Middle Ages

  • The Age of the Reformation

  • The Age of Reason and Revival

  • The Age of Progress

  • The Age of Ideologies


Copyright 2006 S.G.P. All rights reserved. 

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Image: front cover of the book, "Church History in Plain Language" by Bruce L. Shelley. Cover Design by The Puckett Group.

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This New Edition Includes Contemporary Religious Phenomena

In this new edition of the classic text, Shelley explores contemporary phenomena such as the Religious Right, megachurches, and user-friendly worship services as well as some of the leading personalities behind these movements.  On the cultural and political fronts, he points out the effects of mass media on the communication of the gospel worldwide, and the openness of societies formerly closed to evangelical witness.

Now in its twentieth printing, the continuing popularity of this book attests to its success in achieving its purpose -- to make church history clear, memorable, and accessible to every reader. ___________________________

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