If the transformation of the Roman Empire
into an imperial monarchy was made necessary by historical circumstances – in other words it was a historical necessity – was not the emergence of Christianity on the eastern edge of the empire, on the dividing line to the hostile Parthians who ruled the Orient, also a historical necessity, dictated by historical conditions? This was the view of Paul and the early Christians, at any rate, and they named the inevitability of what they observed and experienced “God’s will”.
The emergence, evolution and historical development of Christianity was considered to be a rational truth, seen by Hegel as the unfolding in history of the world spirit – viewed as Christian, of course. This view prevailed up to the period of German idealism and the liberal theology of the 19th century.