Ever since the emergence of the Jesus movement, believers and non-believers have been deliberating about the decisive factors for its spread. Questions and research interest have come from all directions and have been as diverse as their answers and corollaries. Older scholarship developed “theories of decay”, focusing on the deplorable and decrepit state of the Roman Empire in an “Age of Anxiety” with its moral and spiritual insecurity, economic decline, and
cosmic pessimism. Others emphasized the superiority of Christianity in the diversity of ancient religiosity and talked about the necessary triumph of the new religion. In line with contemporary research Benjamin is interested in individual characteristic traits of early Christianity that were potentially appealing to Peter’s, James’ and Paul’s contemporaries and aroused interest in the urban Christ groups.