The Introduction explains the rationale of the book. From the viewpoint of the history of religion, the failure of early Christian scholars to include ritual in the story of Christian origins is striking. This book attempts to fill the gap in the scholarship by giving pride of place in the study of Christian beginnings to ritual. This aim reflects the renewed interest in ritual among early Christian scholars. The particular contribution of the book is that it combines insights from three fields, New Testament/Early Christian Studies, Ritual Studies, and the Cognitive Science of Religion thereby taking an interdisciplinary approach.
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