Those who have concentrated from within the faith tradition have also helped to give it its identity.
It is not possible to speak of the essence of a historical tradition without referring to how its ideal qualities have been discussed through the ages.
To project these separate bodies against the background of their development in the nations of the world is to suggest the bewildering variety.
While there is something simple about this focus on Jesus as the central figure, there is also something very complicated.
That complexity is revealed by the thousands of separate churches, sects, and denominations that make up the modern Christian tradition.
It has consistently rejected polytheism and atheism.
A second element of the faith tradition of Christianity, with rare exceptions, is a plan of salvation or redemption.
Yet one can take up the separate subjects of essence and identity in sequence, being always aware of how they interrelate..