HTS Theological Studies
On-line version ISSN 2072-8050
Print version ISSN 0259-9422
DREYER, Wim A.. The amazing growth of the early church. Herv. teol. stud. [online]. 2012, vol.68, n.1, pp.1-7. ISSN 2072-8050.
The church grew rapidly during the first centuries. The question is: Why? Generations of scholars approached this question from different perspectives and with different methods. Historical research, analysis of early Christian texts and theological reflection were the most common methods used to shed light on the growth of the church. In this contribution five different models of growth were discussed, using the approach of A.M. Schor as a point of departure. These models of church growth were put under the headings of an apostolic mission model, values reproduction model, social reaction model, network model with an institutional model added.