St. Augustine in His Study—Sandro Botticelli, 1480

St. Augustine—354—430 AD. Augustine that Hippo, additionally known as Saint Augustine, to be a theologian, philosopher, and also the bishop that Hippo Regius in Numidia, roman inn North Africa. His Roman mom Monica (now well-known as St. Monica) to be a Christian and also raised him together such. Augustine did not provide his life to Christ until he was c. Period 33. In his late teens and 20’s the struggled with sexual impurities and various current philosophies, primarily with Manichaeism. The mr spared his praying mommy Monica (332—387) to check out the counter of her child to Christ—a year after ~ his counter in c. 386.

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Augustine’s Confessions, composed in Latin, to be finished in c. 400. It includes the autobiography of his sin-plagued youth and also his conversion to Christ.

St. Augustine, kid of Tears—Fra Angelico, 1395 – 1455

He was increased on the holy bible by his mother and it to be the indigenous in the holy bible which lugged him to his Christian faith. Together a theologian/philosopher the was constantly in all ways specialized to “Sola Scriptura” an interpretation “by bible alone,”—a an essential theological doctrine that posits the Christian scriptures are the sole infallible source of authority because that Christian faith and also practice. He offered as the Christian Bishop the Hippo ~ above the shore in Algeria native 396 to 430. He passed away there. He was born in Thagaste around 60 mile from Hippo.


Some the his struggles and also Augustine’s conversion begin now “in his own words”:

(From ages 17-19) “To Carthage i came, whereby a cauldron that unholy loves bubbled increase all around me. Ns loved not as yet, yet i loved come love….I searched around for something to love, in love v loving…..For in ~ me I had a dearth of the inward food, Yourself, my God, though that dearth caused me no hunger….For this reason my spirit was much from well, and, full of ulcers, the miserably cast itself forth, craving to be excited by call with objects that sense. Yet, had these no soul, they would certainly not surely accumulate love. Come love and to be loved to be sweet to me, and also all the more when I thrived in enjoying the human I loved. Ns befouled, therefore, the feather of friendship v the filth that concupiscence, and I dimmed that is lustre through the hell that lustfulness….

I fell precipitately, then, into the love in which i longed to be ensnared….and secretly arrived at the link of enjoying; and was joyfully bound through troublesome ties, that I can be scourged v the burning iron rods that jealousy, suspicion, fear, anger, and also strife.” Augustine, Confessions 3.1

“At the unstable period of my life, ns studied publications of eloquence, wherein ns was eager to it is in eminent from a damnable and inflated purpose, even a delight in human being vanity. In the plain course the study, ns lighted upon a certain book of Cicero, who language, though not his heart, almost all admire. This book of his includes an exhortation come philosophy, and also is called Hortensius…. Ns yearned for an immortality of wisdom, and also began currently to to happen Luke 15:18 that I can return come You. 

(Luke 15:18–19 “ I will certainly arise and go to my father, and also I will say come him, “Father, I have actually sinned versus heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy come be dubbed your son. Law me as among your hired servants.”

….How ardent was i then, my God, how ardent to paris from earthly things to You! no one did ns know just how You would address me. For v You is wisdom. In Greek the love of wisdom is called philosophy, with which that book inflamed me…. There be some who seduce with philosophy….There is likewise disclosed that many salutary admonition of her Spirit, by Your good and pious servant: “”Beware lest any man damn you with philosophy and vain deceit, ~ the tradition of men, after the rudiments that the world, and not after Christ: because that in that dwells every the fullness that the Godhead bodily.” (Colossians 2:8-9) 

And due to the fact that at the time together Thou, O irradiate of mine heart, know, the words of the apostle (i.e. The new Testament) were unknown to me, i was delighted through that exhortation, in so far only as I was in order to stimulated, and enkindled, and inflamed come love, seek, obtain, hold, and also embrace, not this or the sect, yet wisdom itself…For this name, according to your mercy, O Lord, this surname of my Saviour her Son, had actually my tender heart piously drunk…and whatsoever to be without the name, though never ever so erudite, polished, and truthful, took not complete hold that me.” Augustine, Confessions 4

“So, then, by a humble piety we return to You; and you purge united state from our angry customs, and art merciful depend the guilty of those who confess depend You, and also hears the groaning that the prisoner, and loosens united state from those fetters i m sorry we have actually forged because that ourselves….

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Suddenly (when he was in the garden) ns heard the voice of a boy or girl chanting over and over again, “pick it up; read it; choose it up, read it.” (Translated from the Latin “Tolle Lege, Tolle Lege” and also pronounced “tol-lay lah-jhay”— it method “take up and also read.”)

“Tolle Lege” mosaic in ~ St. Augustine’s university in Sydney, Australia

So damning the torrent of my tears, I acquired to my feet, because that I can not yet think that this to be a command to open up the Bible and read the very first passage I have to light upon: “Go and sell what girlfriend have and give it come the poor, and also you shall have actually treasure in heaven. And also come and follow me” (Matthew 19:21)….

Saint Augustine—Philippe de Champaigne (1602-1674)

I quickly returned come the bench…snatched up the apostle’s book…and in silence review the paragraph on which my eye fell: “Not in rioting and also drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and also envying, but put on the lord Jesus Christ and make no provision because that the meat to accomplish the lusts thereof” (Romans 13:13)…. I wanted to read no further, nor did I need to. For instantly, together the sentence ended, there was infused in my love something irradiate the light of complete certainty and all the gloom of doubt vanished away.” Augustine, Confessions 8—Article by Sandra Sweeny Silver