Religions of the World - Questions, Challenges, and New Directions - Leslie Dorrough Smith

Leslie Dorrough Smith [+-]
Avila University
Leslie Dorrough Smith is Professor of Religious Studies at Avila University and a member of the Women’s and Gender Studies faculty.
Steven W Ramey [+-]
University of Alabama
Steven W. Ramey is a Professor in Religious Studies at the University of Alabama, where he also directs the Asian Studies Program.


This chapter explores and then interrogates four popular perspectives on Christianity. The first understands Christianity as the teachings of Jesus, which includes a wide range of interpretations of these teachings as well as the significance of Jesus as a figure. The second views Christianity as the Christian theological tradition, describing the main institutional forms and their development, as well as the multitude of groups that do not fit neatly within those forms. The third considers Christianity to be an individual relationship with God that people express in a variety of different personal experiences. This representation also considers how groups decide which religious experiences are considered legitimate (and which are not). Finally, the fourth perspective describes Christianity as a means of cultural/political influence.

Notify A Colleague


Dorrough Smith, Leslie; Ramey, Steven. Christianity. Religions of the World - Questions, Challenges, and New Directions. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. Jan 2024. ISBN 9781800503762. Date accessed: 07 Dec 2023 doi: 10.1558/equinox.44597. Jan 2024

Dublin Core Metadata