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Answer To The Pelagians III (Works of Saint Augustine) (Pt. 3) [Hardcover]

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Pages   776
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 2" Width: 6.5" Height: 9.5"
Weight:   2.6 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Feb 28, 2003
Publisher   NEW CITY PRESS
ISBN  1565481291  
EAN  9781565481299  


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Overview
The Julian of the title is Julian of Eclanum, fifth century bishop and a disciple of Pelagius, the British monk who championed the idea of a radically free will, one which had no need of grace in order to do good. Augustine had responded before to Julian, in his Answer to the Two Letters of the Pelagians and his Marriage and Desire, and in this work Augustine responds once again, this time to Julian's To Florus, addressed to a Pelagian Bishop. In that work, Julian had defended the Pelagian theology, and attacked that of Augustine. In the Unfinished Work against Julian, begun in 427 and left unfinished at Augustine's death in 430, Augustine offers a paragraph by paragraph reply. The text alternates quotations from Julian's work with Augustine's commentary thereon. It is one of Augustine's largest works and has not previously been translated into English. Reading it, it is easy to understand why. Augustine is not at his best here. He often comes across as a tired, cranky old man. Even the most dedicated of Augustinians would find it hard to slog though this interminable work. Much of the time Julian and Augustine are two old men sniping at each other, with Julian accusing Augustine of being a Manichee, and Augustine reminding Julian that his teacher, Pelagius, had already been condemned by the church. The number of names by which they ridicule each other, and the invectives they toss around, do not show either one in the best light. But this is not to say that there is nothing worthwhile in the work. Because Augustine quotes Julian's work before replying, it offers the most extensive exposition of the Pelagian doctrine from a Pelagian's point of view. At the same time it offers a detailed exposition of Augustine's view of the effects of the Fall, a view he is forced to refine because of the nature of this work. One of the most interesting controversies is that concerning unbaptized babies. Julian argues that the doctrine of original sin makes marriage the work of the devil and brings into disrepute human nature itself. Augustine continues his traditional defense of marriage, and reiterates his position, seen especially in book fourteen of the City of God, that had Adam and Eve not sinned, the flesh, and hence sexual desire, would have been

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More About Bishop of Hippo Saint Augustine

Saint Augustine of Hippo Augustine was born in AD 354. He lived a wild, self-destructive life as a young man in Italy and was the subject of many prayers by his worried mother, Monica. After a life-changing conversion, he lived on to become a tremendous influence on Christian thinking. He died in AD 430.

Aurelius Augustinus [more commonly “St. Augustine of Hippo,” often simply “Augustine”] (354–430 C.E.): rhetor, Christian Neoplatonist, North African Bishop, Doctor of the Roman Catholic Church. One of the decisive developments in the western philosophical tradition was the eventually widespread merging of the Greek philosophical tradition and the Judeo-Christian religious and scriptural traditions. Augustine is one of the main figures through and by whom this merging was accomplished. He is, as well, one of the towering figures of medieval philosophy whose authority and thought came to exert a pervasive and enduring influence well into the modern period (e.g. Descartes and especially Malebranche), and even up to the present day, especially among those sympathetic to the religious tradition which he helped to shape (e.g. Plantinga 1992; Adams 1999). But even for those who do not share this sympathy, there is much in Augustine's thought that is worthy of serious philosophical attention. Augustine is not only one of the major sources whereby classical philosophy in general and Neoplatonism in particular enter into the mainstream of early and subsequent medieval philosophy, but there are significant contributions of his own that emerge from his modification of that Greco-Roman inheritance, e.g., his subtle accounts of belief and authority, his account of knowledge and illumination, his emphasis upon the importance and centrality of the will, and his focus upon a new way of conceptualizing the phenomena of human history, just to cite a few of the more conspicuous examples.

Saint Augustine of Hippo was born in 354 and died in 430.

Saint Augustine of Hippo has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Augustine (New City Press)
  2. Pure Gold Classics
  3. Works of Saint Augustine (Hardcover Unnumbered)
  4. Works of Saint Augustine (Numbered)


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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Classic Augustine  Sep 9, 2008
This is Augustine's late but maybe not so great "Uncompleted Work against Julian." Some describe this work as a slogging match between Augustine and Julian but there are some real gems here as well. The translation is very crisp, clear and modern and free of "thees" and "thous."
 
A Major document on PELAGIANS  Feb 9, 2000
The Julian of the title is Julian of Eclanum, fifth century bishop and a disciple of Pelagius, the British monk who championed the idea of a radically free will, one which had no need of grace in order to do good. Augustine had responded before to Julian, in his Answer to the Two Letters of the Pelagians and his Marriage and Desire, and in this work Augustine responds once again, this time to Julian's To Florus, addressed to a Pelagian Bishop. In that work, Julian had defended the Pelagian theology, and attacked that of Augustine. In the Unfinished Work against Julian, begun in 427 and left unfinished at Augustine's death in 430, Augustine offers a paragraph by paragraph reply. The text alternates quotations from Julian's work with Augustine's commentary thereon. It is one of Augustine's largest works and has not previously been translated into English. Reading it, it is easy to understand why.

Augustine is not at his best here. He often comes across as a tired, cranky old man. Even the most dedicated of Augustinians would find it hard to slog though this interminable work. Much of the time Julian and Augustine are two old men sniping at each other, with Julian accusing Augustine of being a Manichee, and Augustine reminding Julian that his teacher, Pelagius, had already been condemned by the church. The number of names by which they ridicule each other, and the invectives they toss around, do not show either one in the best light.

But this is not to say that there is nothing worthwhile in the work. Because Augustine quotes Julian's work before replying, it offers the most extensive exposition of the Pelagian doctrine from a Pelagian's point of view. At the same time it offers a detailed exposition of Augustine's view of the effects of the Fall, a view he is forced to refine because of the nature of this work. One of the most interesting controversies is that concerning unbaptized babies. Julian argues that the doctrine of original sin makes marriage the work of the devil and brings into disrepute human nature itself. Augustine continues his traditional defense of marriage, and reiterates his position, seen especially in book fourteen of the City of God, that had Adam and Eve not sinned, the flesh, and hence sexual desire, would have been subject to the will.

One of the main controversies concerns how original sin is passed on. Augustine claims it is by generation, Julian that it is by imitation. They each offer their own interpretations of Paul's Epistle to the Romans and of Genesis. Julian argues that a just God could not punish individuals for a sin they did not commit., as is the case with original sin. Augustine upholds the traditional teaching about the gravity of the sin of Adam and Eve, and its dire effects on the human race, and argues on behalf of the grace of God. Questions of grace and free will come up, and are debated, with appeals to Scripture and the nature of God. And the question of evil is treated at length.

Unlike the other volumes that Teske has translated for this series, this one does not contain a detailed summary. The table of contents, however, offers a detailed list of topics. And in the general introduction Teske offers an exposition of the key topics. At the back of the book is the usual index of Scripture citations and a general index.

 

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