Tag: Augustine

How Apologetics Impacts Conversion: A Historical Case Study Part 1

In historic Christianity the field of apologetics (a reasoned defense of the faith) is considered a branch of theology. Apologetics often has a close connection to evangelism (communication of the gospel message) by attempting to remove intellectual obstacles that may stand in the way of a person embracing faith (conversion). In this four-part series we’ll take a look at how apologetics can…

Christian Thinkers 101: A Crash Course on St. Augustine

  I’ve heard it said that evangelical Christians don’t study our church history very deeply. As a fellow evangelical, I think there is, unfortunately, a lot of truth in this statement. Contemporary Christians can learn a great deal from the history of their faith. But where to start? This series, “Christian Thinkers 101,” provides a snapshot of some of the…

3 Timeless Books on Christianity

When I get a little money, I buy books. And if there is any left over, I buy food. —Desiderius Erasmus, Dutch Renaissance scholar and theologian Reading books has been an obsession of mine since my conversion to Christianity as a college sophomore. I sensed my mind really mattered in serving the Lord; so I began a serious pursuit of…

Quote of the Week: David K. Naugle

Using current psychological jargon to describe his [Augustine of Hippo] background, a prima facie reading of his Confessions reveals that he grew up in a dysfunctional family, suffered through a childhood of unhappiness, was prone to theft and dishonesty, abhorred study and formal education, was virtually addicted to sex and food, enjoyed the life of the theatre and cabaret, studied…

10 Influential Theological Books, Part 1

Happy New Year! Now that the hectic holiday time has passed, it’s time to set resolutions for 2013. Healthy eating and exercise frequently make the list, but mental and spiritual fitness should, too. To encourage your intellectual growth in the New Year, I offer up this two-part list of great theological works. Influential educator Mortimer J. Adler defines a “great…

Contemporary Criticism of Augustine’s Thought, Part 10

While Augustine’s presentation and defense of classical Christian theism is strongly critiqued by some modern scholars (especially those who are skeptical and theologically liberal), his thinking continues to be embraced by many within Western Christendom. Two areas, in which Augustine is criticized even by sympathetic contemporary scholars, relate to his philosophical thinking and political power.

Worldly Ambition and Dissatisfaction: St. Augustine, Part 4

Augustine of Hippo (AD 354–430) was a gifted rhetorician and after teaching in his hometown of Thagaste for some time, he opened a school in Carthage. But Carthage’s unruly students and a personal hope for greater success elsewhere soon motivated Augustine to leave for Rome. In moving to the Eternal City, Augustine believed that a man of his ability could…

Exploring Manichaeism: St. Augustine, Part 3

In his search for an alternative to catholic Christianity, Augustine of Hippo (AD 354–430) turned to a religious sect known as Manichaeism, which promised to synthesize Christ’s “true” teachings with classical wisdom. The Manichees1 followed the teaching of Mani (AD 216–277), a Persian religious leader who was crucified for claiming to be the Paraclete and restorer of the true teaching…