Christianity originated in Israel, among Jews in the first century A.D. It is based on the life, death, teachings and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Those people who followed Jesus Christ were referred to most often as "Christians."
After the resurrection of Jesus Christ and his commission to his disciples, Christianity spread from the Jews to the Gentiles. It was not long before Jewish Christians were a minority in the church.
There are many denominations within Christianity, but the three main branches are Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy and Protestantism. Christianity is most dominant in the West, but it has spread to every continent and is the world's largest religion.
Core Christian beliefs include belief in one God, who is represented in three ways through the trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Christians also believe that Jesus was sent as the Messiah to save and redeem the world. Faith in Jesus is a cornerstone of Christian faith. Christians also read, study and adhere to the teachings found in the Bible. Although Christianity is laid out in the New Testament, Christians accept and study the Old Testament as well since God was present in both and the Old Testament foretells Jesus' coming. Christians also gather to worship God on a regular basis.