Tag: Confessions

My Soul Is Like a House

One of the things I like about the writings of the Christian church father St. Augustine of Hippo (354–430) is his rich use of analogies1 in talking about critical theological topics. An analogy, of course, is a comparison between two things (how they are like and unlike), usually for the purpose of providing explanation. In his most popular work, Confessions,2 Augustine compares the human soul to a house…

Did Augustine Lead the Ancient Church Astray?

Anybody who has heard my podcast, listened to my theological lectures, reviewed my Reflections blog, or read my books will know that I have a special appreciation for St. Augustine of Hippo (AD 354–430). He is my favorite Christian thinker outside of the Bible, though just a little ahead of other great Christian thinkers like St. Athanasius, Blaise Pascal, and…

How Apologetics Impacts Conversion: A Historical Case Study, Part 4

Christians correctly assume that apologetics impacts conversion. That’s why many Christian ministries, organizations, and individuals who are motivated by evangelism take the apologetics enterprise seriously. But just how does apologetics impact conversion? And which apologetics factors contribute to a person’s movement toward salvation in Christ? As we have stated in this series, in historic Christianity the apologetics enterprise functions as a tool…

3 Things You May Not Know about St. Augustine the Writer

Augustine of Hippo (354–430) was born in North Africa to a pagan father and a Christian mother. Following a youth and an early career steeped in debauchery and ambition, Augustine experienced a dramatic conversion to Christianity when he turned from his pagan beliefs. His classic book Confessions details his conversion story and, to this day, remains a perennial bestseller. Over his lengthy career Augustine was a prolific author,…

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…

Augustine’s View of Predestination: St. Augustine, Part 9

Although Pelagianism, a view that denies original sin and promotes the idea that salvation can be earned, went against Augustine’s views of grace through Christ, it did encourage Augustine to focus his thinking on the doctrine of predestination. In his early writings, Augustine taught predestination based upon God’s foreknowledge. The idea was that God merely chose those human beings whom…

In Pursuit of Truth: St. Augustine, Part 7

Augustine’s life (AD 354–430) can be divided into roughly two halves. The first half of his journey was spent searching for the truth that would give meaning, purpose, and significance to his life. The second half was spent reflecting upon, explaining, defending, and living out the truth he encountered through faith in Jesus Christ. Given his life-long quest for truth,…

Three Christian Classics

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…