Archive for April, 2010

City of God Intro, 1:1-6

14 Apr

I’ve re-started reading The City of God by Augustine.

Augustine wrote to defend “the city of God,” which ultimately exists “in the security of its everlasting seat,” but also exists in some ways in “this world of time1.” This is Augustine’s expression of the already/not-yet idea of the Kingdom  – it is already among us in some ways but not yet in others for which we wait expectantly.

Part of Augustine’s personal story as he wrote in his Confessions, was his ability to argue and debate and the pride he experienced as a young man at university then as a professor. He was uniquely equipped to we write to convince those who are proudly attacking Christianity and blaming it for the fall of the Roman empire to the barbarians. He also understood

“how great is the effort needed to convince the proud of the power and excellence of humility, an excellence which makes it soar above all the summits of this world, which sway in their temporal instability, overtopping them all with an eminence not arrogated by human pride but granted by divine grace.”

In a parallel contrast to the eternal (yet present in time) city of God vs. the temporary earthly cities of men, Augustine’s arguments are here framed as soaring above the temporal world of the prideful arguments of his opponents.

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