A Concise History of the Christian Church by R.A. Baker

Al Baker
1981 – B.S. Mgt/Marketing (Troy Univ – Alabama)

1990 – Classical Greek (Univ. of Alabama)

2001 – Ph.D. Early Church History (University of St Andrews – Scotland)

Al has served 20+ years as a pastor (local church and university pastor), was an adjunct then an associate professor of Philosophy and Religion at Saint Augustine’s University in Raleigh NC for six years and as an adjunct for Troy University for a few semesters.

Al dropped out of college in the middle of his freshman year to serve as a missionary in Youth With a Mission (YWAM) in Argentina. He has served on multiple short-term mission trips to Ecuador.

In 2005 he started churchhistory101.com, surpassing 1 million unique visitors in 2016. On that site there are several articles and papers written by Dr. Baker on different aspects of early Christianity and two PDF eBooks you can download:
A Concise History of the Christian Church: From the Apostles to the Council of Nicea 325 A.D. and Christians, War and Military Service: From the New Testament to Emperor Constantine.

“My passion is early Christian history. As a new Christian (age 17) I was confronted with the challenge that the New Testament had been dramatically changed over the years. I spent 3-4 hours at the college library reading Justin Martyr, Irenaeus of Lyons and Clement of Alexandria to see how closely their NT citations followed my New Testament. Their quotations very closely matched my Bible.

There is a serious lack of knowledge and understanding of early church history, especially among Protestants. We must realize that the early church, like the modern church, was not perfect. These writers I mentioned above were closer to the apostolic age, yet they did not fully agree with one another. To understand how the fathers faced the issues of their day should instruct us. At the very least we need to gain historical perspective, and allow the struggles of the first several centuries help us to learn which issues are truly important.

I will do my best to answer your questions and comments. You can always visit my site to read more:  www.churchhistory101.com.”

Al Baker, Ph.D.
St Mary’s Divinity School
St Andrews University

Personal Life
– son of a NASA rocket propulsion engineer
– played football, basketball and baseball in high school
– was a terrible high jumper in high school
– B.S. in Business Management and Marketing – Troy University, Troy AL
– a year of Greek at the University of Alabama (Homeric and Classical)
– University pastor: Troy Univ. (2 yrs); Western Washington Univ (1 yr intern); Univ of Alabama (11 yrs)
– ordained in 1994 (Assemblies of God in Alabama)
– Ph.D. in Ecclesiastical History – University of St Andrews, Scotland
– pastor, Bethel Assembly – Dundee, Scotland
– married 40+ years to wife Heather with two adult daughters: Hope and Erin
– pastor, Troy Community Church, Troy AL (8 yrs)

I play golf as often as I can. I have 3 hole-in-one shots…and I can miss 3 ft putts with great ease!
I am a bit OCD in several areas of my life. I watch movies I like over…and over again.
I have watched Seasons 1-3 of “The Chosen” over 25 times…no kidding.
Favorite Movies:
Hoosiers – Sea Biscuit – Raising Arizona – O Brother Where Art Thou – Crimson Tide – Shawshank Redemption – Forest Gump – Elf – The Matrix (original) – Star Wars (Next Generation) – No Country for Old Men – BatMan (Val Kilmer) – The Social Network – The Mask – Tombstone…and probably 5-10 others.