Christianity is usually called a religion. As a religion it has had a wider geographic spread and is more deeply rooted among more peoples than any other religion in the history of mankind.
Compared with the thousands of years in which human life has been on this planet, Christianity is a recent development.
The Psalms, the anthology of the hymns of Israel, are still used by Christians.
We know something of the history of the spread of Christianity, but much passed from recorded memory and much was transmitted by tradition whose accuracy has been repeatedly questioned.
In both the presence of evil and the eventual triumph over evil the sweep is cosmic. It embraces the entire universe, what to man is both seen and unseen. The victory is to be accomplished through Christ.
We must, however, note that what are usually called the high religions made their appearance within about twenty-five hundred years – most of them within fifteen hundred years.
Although when Christianity appeared the total population of the planet was only a fraction of that of the twentieth century, most of the earth’s surface was quite outside the Mediterranean world, Persia, India, and China.
This means that to man God gave a degree of free will.
John the Baptist, who we are told was related by blood to Jesus, was preaching the impending judgement of God, urging repentance and moral reform, and baptizing in the Jordan River those who responded.
Christians were regarded as separated from society and therefore destructive of the Greco-Roman way of life.