Many are descended from ancient Arab Christian clans that did not convert to Islam, such as the Kahlani Qahtanite tribes of Yemen (i.e., Ghassanids, and Banu Judham) who settled in Transjordan and Syria, as well as Arabized Christians, such as Melkites and Antiochian Greek Christians.
Arab Christians, forming Greek Orthodox and Latin Christian communities, are estimated to be 520,000 in Israel and around 50,000 in Palestine.
The tribes of Tayy, Banu Abdul Qays, and Taghlib are also known to have included many Christians in the pre-Islamic period.
The southern Arabian city of Najran was a center of Arabian Christianity, made famous by the persecution by one of the kings of Yemen, Dhu Nawas, who was himself an enthusiastic convert to Judaism.
Although sometimes classified as "Arab Christians", the largest Middle Eastern Christian groups of Maronites and Copts often claim non-Arab ethnicity: a significant proportion of Maronites claim descent from the ancient Phoenicians while Copts also eschew an Arab identity, preferring an Ancient Egyptian one.
Jubail Church is a 4th-century church building near Jubail, Saudi Arabia.
There were many Arab tribes which adhered to Christianity beginning with the 1st century, including the Nabateans and the Ghassanids.
Beirut, Cairo, Damascus and Aleppo were the main centers of the renaissance and this led to the establishment of schools, universities, Arab theater and printing presses.
It also led to the renewal of literary, linguistic and poetic distinctiveness.
The leader of the Arabs of Najran during the period of persecution, al-Ḥārith, was canonized by the Catholic Church as Arethas.
Some modern scholars suggest that Philip the Arab was the first Christian emperor of Rome.