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UPDATE: “Confessions” – Book IX: Chapters 1 – 6

 

Here are our essays for the first half of Book IX of the Confessions.

We covered the role emotions play to religious and spiritual practices; how conversion changes our view of others and the world around us; the use and place of the Bible in a believer’s life; and whether or not non-believers will be rewarded for good works in the afterlife.

 

 

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UPDATE: “Confessions”: Book VII – Chapters 11 – 21

 

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This past week we concluded Book VII of “Confessions” by covering chapters 11 – 21.

We had good conversations about human reason and the (Neoplatonic) discipline of focusing on spiritual things to draw closer to God; is Jesus the only way? and religious pluralism; the nature of Jesus; the nature of evil; the distinction between Creator and creation; the influence of Platonic thought on Christian education throughout the centuries and its problems.

We also had a stimulating discussion centering around the questions, “Who is Jesus?”  One can easily spurt out, “Oh, he’s my Lord and Savior.”  But if you trip away the “churchy” language everyone uses and really, really ask yourself who he is to you and what he really means to you (if anything), it might be harder than you think it is.  One reason I believe that it is so hard is because that question is also a very personal question as well.

You can read our essays here.

 

 

A New New Testament

The process of canonization of the biblical text or the Bible that we have now, is long and complex.

Most people think that the 66 books that comprise the Bible have been set in stone and that they are a settled (and eternal) issue, but it really depends in most part what Christian tradition or denomination you’re affiliated with.

I can only imagine how (radically) different Christianity would have been like if such books were included and other current ones, like the Book of Revelation, had been omitted.

Very interesting article about a new book coming out soon.

The Rev. Hal Taussig at Chestnut Hill United Church, where he is co-pastor. His book, due out this week, raises deep questions about the early years of Christianity.

http://articles.philly.com/2013-03-04/news/37412901_1_christianity-new-testament-bible-scholars

Christmas in the Middle Ages

Merry Christmas everyone!

Here’s an interesting article about the origins of Christmas and how it was celebrated during the Middle Ages.

(excerpt from the article):

Meanwhile, the new religion of Christianity was also developing a series of their own special days, and around the year 300, it was decided that a feast day would be held in honour of Christ’s birth.  Unfortunately, the actual date of Jesus’ birth was not recorded in the gospels or any other early Christian writings.  Since it was a common practice at the time for emperors to celebrate their birthdays on dates abitrarily chosen, it was decided to pick a date for Jesus’ birthday, and December 25th was selected. The theological basis for this date was that it fell exactly nine months from March 25th, which was believed to be the day on which the world was created, and would also be the date of Christ’s conception.

Read the article here.

Hello and Welcome to Project Augustine.

Welcome!

We hope you enjoy and learn from our new site where we discuss topics pertaining to the Christian faith including theology, christology (the nature of Christ), soteriology (salvation), church history, philosophy, biblical studies, science, and other fields.