Christianity is the world's most popular religion by number of adherents. Members of the religion are called Christians. It is a monotheistic religion, meaning it has only one God.. It is the largest religion in the world and is based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth.
To most of the people of his time Jesus was a preacher, teacher, healer, and prophet from ancient Judea. However, his disciples believed him to be much more than that - they believed that Jesus was God's one and only son. The man said to be his father, Joseph, was a carpenter. Jesus was executed by being nailed to a cross (or crucified) under Pontius Pilate, the local Roman governor at the time. His life and followers are written about in the New Testament, part of the Bible. Christians consider the Bible, both the Old Testament and New Testament, as sacred. The Gospels or "The Good News" are the first four books of the New Testament and are about the life of Jesus, his death, and him rising from the dead.
Christians needed to come up with an explanation why the Bible mentions God the Father, God the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and yet there should only be one god. This idea, called Trinity, was started at the First Council of Nicaea, in 325, and developed during several church meetings or councils. Today, many Christian groups agree with it. Oriental Orthodox Churches did not agree with the idea, and split after the council. The biggest of the Oriental Orthodox is the Coptic Orthodox Church. The Oriental Orthodox Churches agree with the ideas in the First Council of Nicaea, but they disagree with other councils.
An example of a more recent Christian movement that does not agree with the idea of the Trinity is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Latter Day Saints started in the first half of the 19th century, in the United States. There are also smaller groups who do not believe in the Trinity at all.
God created the world. Jesus is the name of God the Son. Christians believe Him to be the Son of God. They believe that He was the human son of the Virgin Mary and the divine Son of God. They believe He suffered and died to free humans from their sin and was later raised from the dead. He then went up into Heaven. At the end of time, Jesus will come back to Earth to judge all mankind, both alive and dead, giving everlasting life to those who believe in him. The Holy Spirit is the spirit of God on the Earth that spoke through prophets.
The most basic part of Christianity is the belief in Jesus as the Son of God and Messiah (Christ). The title "Messiah" comes from the Hebrew word מָשִׁיחַ (māšiáħ) meaning anointed one. The Greek translation [Χριστός] error: : text has italic markup (help) (Christos) is the source of the English word "Christ". Joshua is English for the Hebrew word Yeshua.
A depiction of Jesus and Mary, the Theotokos of Vladimir (12th century).