The Ancient Church

Subscribe to Access

The Ancient Church


Number of Lessons: 24Avg. Lesson Length: 44 MinutesTime Required: 35 Hours MinimumLevel: Advanced


We are indebted to the Church Fathers for the lasting influence of their lives and their works. This course covers the history of the ancient church (Pentecost to AD 500) and the men and writings of that era. Following a historical progression, the course covers the development of doctrine and the main figures in the Patristic Age. Lectures focus on the influential men like Irenaeus, Origen, Chrysostom, Athanasius,and Ausgustine. Significant creeds are also analyzed for their intentions, influence, and correctness. Throughout the course, students are prompted to evaluate their own beliefs as compared to historical orthodoxy.

This course is part of our Legacy Series of courses from renowned scholars over several decades.


Great details. A lot to take in, over more than one reading of the transcripts. Lessons on the papacy were very interesting coming from a Catholic upbringing.

Course Reviewed: 7 months ago

I have really been blessed by this course.

Course Reviewed: 7 months ago


ProfessorRichard C. Gamble, ThD
  • Universitat Basel, Switzerland, ThD
  • Pittsburgh Theological Seminary, MA
  • Westminster College, BA


  1. Understand the historical development of doctrine and how we came to believe what we do today.
  2. Know the creeds of the church and how they came to exist.
  3. Understand the theological mistakes of the past so as to prevent those errors from happening today.
  4. Understand the history of interpretation of the Scriptures.
  5. Appreciate the roots of today’s church.
  6. Appreciate the relation between church and state.
  7. Understand church government and its different shapes.


Study GuideAudio LecturesTranscriptsCourse Assessment


Great course. Eye opening and very informative. Often, we are faced with issues or debates where people get lost. Church fathers spent time discussing the same topics arising in the 21st century church, but if you are not informed about the work that the Holy Spirit had already done in these fields, you try to re-invent the wheel. I have been spending hours and hours listening to these teachings, and once I started, I was hooked. As a Pastor, this knowledge is very important and useful to lead people that the Lord has entrusted to me.

Course Reviewed: 1 year ago

Great course. Very educational.

Course Reviewed: 2 years ago

Very well presented in a concise manner. I would like to have time, some time, to go into detail over some areas in which I had questions. An example of that would be your use of the word “mode” which brought to mind modalism (I know that’s not what you were addressing). This was a very good look at the first 600 years of the Christian Church.

Course Reviewed: 2 years ago

This course was very interesting and deep for me. This is the first time I have ever did any kind study concerning the early church father. I’d like to learn more. Thank you so much for offering this course.

Course Reviewed: 2 years ago

I enjoyed this course and a great deal of new information concerning the history of the doctrines of the Church and its practices. The recommended text book is very good and a great read and covers what I have had great interest and many questions concerning. Thank you for the opportunity to have studied this topic.

Course Reviewed: 2 years ago