Christianity began in Palestine in the A.D. 1st century. It was founded on the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth and developed by Paul the Apostle.
Jesus of Nazareth, also known as Jesus Christ, was born into the Jewish milieu of Roman Palestine, and his teachings derived from this Jewish environment. Though based on the teachings of Moses and the Prophets, however, Jesus' teachings depart from them in several ways. One important difference is the idea that the message of God extends not merely to the chosen people, but to all of the people in the world. This message made Christianity a strongly evangelistic religion that taught the essential equality of all races. Spreading quickly through the world in the years after Jesus' death, the religion began to incorporate traits from its new environment. For example, the apostle Paul was steeped in Greek learning, so he used the language of Greek philosophy to tailor his message to a non-Jewish audience. The faith evolved further as it became institutionalized in the Roman Catholic Church, acquiring liturgies, a hierarchy and canon law. Over time, the Church split into various denominations, and each of these began a new Christianity based on Jesus' teachings but with a variety of different beliefs and practices.