Original Research

How many Jews became Christians in the first century? The failure of the Christian mission to the Jews

David C. Sim
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 61, No 1/2 | a430 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v61i1/2.430 | © 2005 David C. Sim | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 08 October 2005 | Published: 09 October 2005

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Abstract

This study examines the early Christian mission(s) to the Jews, and attempts to determine, albeit speculatively, the number of Jews in the Christian movement in the first century. It is argued that the combined Christian mission was marked by a distinct lack of success. Neither the Law-observant gospel of the Jerusalem church nor the Law-free gospel of the Hellenists and Paul made much impression upon the people of Israel. Throughout the first century the total number of Jews in the Christian movement probably never exceeded 1 000 and by the end of the century the Christian church was largely Gentile.

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