Christianity began with the ministry of Jesus Christ, which began when he was around 30 years old in the first century A.D. The birthplace of Christianity was Levant, which is known in modern times as Israel and Palestine.
From Jerusalem, Christianity spread throughout what is known as the Near East into Egypt, Jordan, Asia Minor, Phoenicia, Mesopotamia, Assyria and Syria. By the 4th century A.D., Christianity was adopted as the official state religion of the Roman Empire, which was a turning point for Christianity . A branch of Christianity, known as Chalcedonion Christianity, would eventually be divided further into the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church in 1054 during the Great Schism.
The Biblical canon of the early church, which became the Old Testament, and the New Testament, developed in time. The Pauline epistles, which are the writings that are attributed to Jesus' apostles, are among the earliest circulated Christian writings and were in circulation as early as the first century A.D.
These two religious sects spread widely throughout Europe during the Middle Ages. By the Renaissance, Christianity had become the world's largest religions.
Over 2 billion people identify as Christian today.