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HISTORY AND GROWTH OF CHRISTIAN EDUCATION IN EARLY CENTURIES-SERIES 1
BZy \qmpIfnse {InkvXob hnZym`ymkns Ncn{Xhpw hfbpw 1

By Dr. Rajan Mathew B.E., M.E., Ph.D.

INTRODUCTION
BapJw

{InkvXobXbqw AXpambn _s {InkvXobhnZym`ymkhpw \kdmb\mb tbiphnt\msSmw XpSw Ipdnp. cI\mb tbiphns ]ckyip{iqj Imew, AtmkvtXmenI Imew, AtmkvtXmenI Imetij bpKw [Sub-Apostolic Era] , ITn\amb kwL\nembncp {InkvXob k`bpsS BZyImeLw Fnh Dsmp, GItZiw apqdv BZna iZm_vZfnse, {InkvXob hnZym`ymkns Ncn{Xhpw coXnIfpw AhtemI\w sNpXn\p Hcp Ffnb {iaamWv Cu teJ\]ccbneqsS \SnbnpXv. Cu ImeLn\ptijamWv {InkvXobk`bvv \nba]camb AhImiw e`npIbpw ]oV\fn\npw tamN\w e`npIbpw sNbvXXv. {InkvXob anjs Ncn{Xnse hnhn[ ImeL IWnseSpptm, AXv hfsc {][m\s cp ImeL DsmpXmbn ]cnKWnmw. BZy ImeLw: {InkvXphns PohnXw, AtmkvtXmenI k`, AXmbXv ainlm AhXmcw apX hnip tbmlm olmbpsS acWw hscbp ImeLw. ( A.D.1-100 ) cmw ImeLw: {InkvXpaXhn`mKw tdma km{amPyns ]oU\n Ignncp Imew; AXmbXv hnip tbmlm olmbpsS acWw apX BZy {InkvXob N{Ihnbmbncp tImkvss [Constantine] hscbp ImeLw. ( A.D. 100-311). IqSmsX AXns ]me {IaoIcWfpw, k`bpsS Dhhpw, BZyIme {InkvXob hnZym`ymk kmlnXyfpsS hfbpw ]cmainm {iannpv. k`sb D]{ZhnpIbpw, k`bpsS ssiihkwcw`s XpSp\om\p `ojWn DbpIbpw sNbvXhcpsS hnizmkġp IogSpXn\p ]Icw, cI\mb tbip{InkvXphnep hnizmkw Dunbpdnphm XfpsS PohnXw \Inb ckmnIfpsS Xnfw Xncndnbphm\pw ]cn{iannpv.

{InkvXpaXw {]p_v[hpw apIqn {]hNnm\mImXpamb BZyIme\qmpIfneqsS ISpt]mIpIbpw, Ah tcJsSps Ncn{Xnse Ghpw Ahnizk\obamb IYI Bbn amdpIbpw Bbncpp. BZyIme {InkvXym\nI XfpsS Pohs\ `bv FXncmfnIfn\nv kzbw ct\SpXn\pw Bcm[\ \SpXn\pw, {]mnpXn\pw, kzImcy `h\fn IqSnhncpp. Ncn{Xn bYm ]n sInSfpsS AYhm {InkvXob tZhmebfpsS sXfnhpI e`yambnpXv 200- IfpsS ay tijambncpp. Cu ImSpIsfmw Dmbncpsnepw, hnizmknI ssZhoI t{]mml\w A\p`hnncpp. ]cnipmmhns kmnyw AhcpsS \ne\nntbpw hfbptSbpw GI clkyambncpp.

]pXnb \nbas apgph ssZhnI ]Tnnen\mbnq Hcp D]IcWambn IWmmw. Imhmb tbip{InkvXp Xs ]ckyip{iqj Bcw`n BZy\nanjw apX, Ah Hcp Aym]I\mbn AdnbsSpIbpw ]ecpw Ahs\ dn Fp hnfnpIbpw sNbvXncpp. {InkvXphns aX\nct] kaImenI\mbncp tPmko^kv [Josephus] tbiphns\ Hcp "m\nbmb a\pjy\pw Kpcphpw' FmWp hntijnnpXv. "Ctm, Cmen, tbip F m\nbmb Hcp a\pjy, Ahs\ Hcp a\pjys\p hnfnm \nbam\pkrX\mbncpsnepw, ApX {]hrnI sNbvXncp Ah, ktmjtmsS kXyw kzoIcnphsctmse Hcp A[ym]I.Bbncpp.' [ "Now, there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works, a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure."] tbiphns kti ^ekvXo\nse Zcn{Zcpw hnZymlo\cpamb Ipsd blqZmcn ]cnanXsncpp. Atln\v kwLSnXamb Hcp hnZym`ymk ASnd Dmbncpn. Fnepw Xs ]cky ip{iqjbpsS Ipdp \mfpIfn Xm\pambp kn Atlw Ahsc ]cnioennpIbpw Xs hmpIġp ZqXmcmnopIbpw sNbvXp. Xs ip{iqjbpsS Ahkm\w, Fm temInse P\XIsfbpw Xm ]Tnn Imcy ]TnnWsav Ah Xs injymtcmSp Inp. Ahs injym hfsc Pm{KXtbmSpw {]mKytmSpw XfpsS Kpcphmb tbip{InkvXphns Cu I\ \ndthn. Ahv \Inb Znhy]mTw temIn\v Hcp ]pXnb Bmhnsbpw ]pXnb inbpsSbpw Bhn`mhw Bbncpp.

tbiphns kzmtcmlWn\p tijw AsmkvXem k`bpsS \sv Bbn amdn. hnizmkns aqe[\w `ctanshcmbnmWvv Cv Fm {ssIkvXh k`Ifpw ]mccyhpw AsmkvXemsc ImWpXv. tbip{InkvXphns XncsSp AkvtXmemcpw tbiphns BZyIme A\pbmbnIfpw Xsf Xs Hcp ]pXnb aXtam blqZaXn\nv ths] Iqtam Bbn cq]oIcnpXmbn ImWpn. tbip {InkvXphns euIoI th]mSn\ptijw GXm\pw hj Igntm Ahs A\pKmanI blqZ kapZmbn\Iv Xs XpSp. Ah kn\tKmKn [ synagogue ] kPohcmbncpp. tbiphmWv, X At\I Imefmbn Imncnp aninlmbpw cnXmhpw Fv AhcpsS klblqZmtcmSp kmoIcnp. AtmkvXe\mb ]utemkv tbiphns BZy ]{p AtmkvXemcn Hcmfmbncpnsnepw {InkvXphn\pthn Fm Imetpw {]hnncp alm\mb anj\dnbpw A[ym]I\pambncpp. ]utemkns kphntijthebpsS amXrI, kn\tKmKpIfn, sXcphpIfn, amv, Actbm]Kkv [ Areopagus] , amkv lnkv [ Mars Hills] IqSmsX FhnsSsbmw tIhnmsc Inptam AhnsSsbmw {]kwKnembncpp.

hnizmkns kmeuInIXsb atXns\mfpw saambn a\nemm ]utemkv k`sb klmbnp. Ime{ItaW, X bqZbmkn \nv hyXykvXamb Hcp kaqlamsWp Xncndnhv {InkvXphns A\pbmbnIġnSbn hfnsbSpphm hnip ]utemkns DZvt_m[\ġv km[np. BZy \qmnse AtmkvtXmenI ip{iqjbpsS BZy^efmbncp k`m]nXmm cmw \qmnse {InkvXob hnZym`ymkns \ndIpSfmbn \ndp\np. Cu ]pXpk`mt\Xm ]nme ]oU\nsbpw ckmnXznsbqw Imebfhn ]nSnp\nphm XfpsS hnizmk ZrVXbn in Isn. IqSmsX {InkvXym\nIġv aX{`mcnepw hnizmkhn]coXnIfnepw \np shphnfnIsfbpw t\cntSnhp. Cu k`m]nXmmcpsS cN\I tbip{InkvXphns kmyn ]pXpXmbn aX]cnh\w sNbvX hn`mKfpsS BZyIme B\pIqeysa \nebn Fmetpw \apmbnpw ]Ip Xp. {InkvXob hnZym`ymkns Ncn{Xw k`bpsS hfbvpw hnImkn\pw Hcp Ahn`mPy LSIambn amdn. adnpw k`bpsS {ZpZKXnbnep hf {InkvXobhnZym`ymkns kXzc hfbvpw ImcW`qXambnop.

]mmXy ]ucmWnIXbvv AdnbsSp Ghpw henb km{amPyambncpp tdma km{amPyw. saUntd\nb [ Mediterranean] ISen\v ASpp Fm cmPyfpw, Hmkv{Snbbpw [ Austria] kznvkeUpw [ Switzerland] , s\Xemvkns [ Netherlands ] Hcp `mKw, s_Pnbw [ Belgium ] , ]na P\n [ West Germany ] , lwKdn [ Hungary ] , _tKdnb [ Bulgaria ] , sdmam\nb [ Romania ] , Cwv [ England ] , sNtmmhmIy [ Czechoslovakia ] , shbnkv [ Wales ] , ktX kvtImvemUv [ Southern Scotland ] FnhnSfn henb `mKhpw tdmam km{mPyn Dsncpp. NnXdntmb blqZ kaql km{amPyn DS\ofw IpSntbdn ]mncpp. k`bpsS BZys {][m\ Ncn{XImc\mb bqkn_nbkv [ Eusebius ] ]nXmhns FgqpIfn {]Imcw, {ItaW blqZm sbcpiteanse {InkvXym\nIsf ]oUnnpIbpw ]ecpw sbcpitew hnv km{amPyns hnZqc {]hniyIfntep ]memb\w sNpIbpw sNbvXp. AXn\pw D]cnbmbn, A.D. 66 se tdmammsXncmb blqZ Iem]hpambn _s kw`h Cu ]memb\ ]cnh\ġv Bw Iqn. AtmkvtXmemcpsS, {]tXyInpw hnip ]utemkv AtmkvtXmes almb ZuXyw, AXncpIġpdw Hcp kaqlhpw Hcp IpSpw_hpw krnp. km{amPynsemSpap hnizmkn ktlmZc PmXn aX `mj t`Zsas\y Ahsc kzmKXw sNbvXp. sshhn[yam P\fpsS C{]Imcap Hcp Bob sFIyX kvt\lakrWamb Hcp Iqmbvapw kaqln\pw hgnsbmcpn.

B[p\nI bpKnse kaImenI k`I BkzZnpXqt]msebp {InkvXob hnZym`ymkns ssZhimkv{X]camb Hcp {IaoIcWhpw BZna {InkvXym\nIġv Dmbncpn. ]pXpXmbn tNs hnizmknIfpsS {][m\ Ihyw AhcpsS hnizmkn \ne\nm\pw B hnizmkn XfpsS IpnIsf kwcnm\pw thn Bbncpp. AXnPoh\n\mbp ss[cyw Dsmt Hcp bpKambncpp AXv. kmlnXynt\m IeItm euIoI BkzmZ\tm GsXnepw ssZhimkv{X]cn]mSnIġpamtbm Ah kabw Isnbncpn. BZna k`bn Hcp {InkvXym\nbmbn amdpI FXv kzImcyamb Xocpam\ambncpnsnepw, AXv Hcp hyn]camb Xocpam\ambncpp. Hcp {InkvXym\nbmbnocpIsbm, {Iaambn Ipapp Hcp Iqns `mKamIpIsbXmbncpp AXns eyw.

BZy Xeapd apX {InkvXym\nI H, blqZmcpw {KopImcpw, F cv kmlnXy kwkvImcfn thcqnbncpp. Cu cp kwkvImcfnepw \ne\nncp aqeyhmb ]T\coXnbpw ]T\hpsamw ImcWw AhcpsS lrZbfn ssZhsfpdnp Nnm[mcI cq]snpmbncpp. {Kon tkm{Iokv [Socrates] , ttm [Plato] , Acnkvtmn [Aristotle] , kvtmbnvkv [Stoics] , Fnqcykv [Epicureans] Fnh Dmbncpp. CtX Imepmbncp blqZmv F{km [Ezra] , k`m{]kwKn [Ecclesiastes] , kndmv [Sirach] , itemtams m\ns FgppImc [Writer of Wisdom of Solomon] apXembh Dmbncpp. {InkvXobhnZym`ymkns Ncn{Xw sl{_mbsmw Bcw`npp FXv hfsc hyamWv. BZna {InkvXym\nXzns ]e ]Tnnepw Cu Imebfhn av aXfn kamcambn \ne\nncpp, Fm {InkvXym\nXznse XnIpw AXpeyamb Hv {InkvXp F hynbmbncpp. BZna {InkvXym\nIġv tbip{InkvXp Hcp ]Tnnent\m D]cnbmbncpp. Ah AhcpsS CSbn XpSpw Pohnncnpmbncpp, Fmbvtmgpw e`yambncpp, AhcpsS {]m\I tIġpIbpw Bhiyap kabfn ss[cyhpw inbpw \IpIbpw sNbvXncpp.

BZna k`bpsS kmlnXy {]tNmZnXcmb FgppImcm FgpXs AXypaamb aqey Dsmp IrXnIfmbncpp. kaImenI kmlnXyImcmtcm {InkvXob FgppIm m\nItfm _pnammtcm Bbncpn. Fm AXv Fmbvtmgpw ]cnipmmhns DmcWw Bbn Dbsncpp. \mep kphntijIm {InkvXphns D]tZifpsS kvamcI inbmb \mev kphntij k`bvv ssIamdn. {InkvXym\nI {]Ncnn hnZym`ymk ktiw hfsc kohpw AKm[hpw Bbncpp. apIme \qmpIfnse BZchpXpw Ghpw anIXpamb XzNnIġv Apdtv kphntij ssZhs shfnsSpnbncnpp Fv temIs a\nemphm, k`bpsS Ghpw {]_p a\pI AoWw {]bXv\nncpp.

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