For today’s episode, we spoke with Kristian Heal. BYU’s Maxwell Institute has just released an amazing new volume of research called Ancient Christians, that offers remarkable insights into Christianity’s earliest centuries. It’s intended for Latter-day Saints, but based on the best scholarship available to give us a glimpse into what these ancient Christians believed, how they worshiped, and the ways in which they saw and experienced the world.
Kristian Heal was one of the editors of this volume, and wrote the chapter that we spoke with him about, called Preaching Christ. In his chapter, Kristian explores several fascinating topics that we got to ask him about, including the ritual of baptism, and what were referred to as “the deep mysteries of baptism,” what sabbath worship looked like early on, and how he deals with the concept of “apostasy” and “restoration,” including how we can view the evolution of Christianity without seeing it through an “us vs. them” paradigm.
And for those of you just being introduced to Kristian and his work: he’s a Research Fellow at the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship. He received a BA in Jewish History and Hebrew from University College London, an MSt in Syriac studies from the University of Oxford, and a PhD in Theology from the University of Birmingham.
As we study the New Testament this year, we actually hope to bring you more of the insights that the Maxwell Institute has shared through this book.