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Answered 2011-02-27 21:35:12

Biblical tradition tells us that Christianity was founded by the crucifixion of Jesus in Jerusalem, variouly believed to have occurred either in the year 30 or 33 CE.

However, some scholars note evidence of Christian worship independent of the death of Jesus in Palestine, and perhaps even earlier. Rudolf Bultmann of Germany's Marburg University, acknowledged by many as the twentieth century's most influential theological thinker, condemned as useless further attempts to try to reconstruct the Jesus of history: " I do indeed think that we can now know almost nothing concerning the life and personality of Jesus, since the early Christian sources show no interest in either, are moreover fragmentary and often legendary." Others say that Christianity either began as a pagan Mystery religion that was absorbed into the Jewish milieu, or as an underground Jewish sect that eventually adopted the outward appearance of following a wandering preacher who was crucified for our sins. On this view we can not know when Christianity really began.

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