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Shepherd's Notes: City of God (Shepherd's Notes. Christian Classics) [Paperback]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   102
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.24" Width: 5.26" Height: 0.25"
Weight:   0.34 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 1999
Publisher   B&H Publishing Group
ISBN  080549345X  
EAN  9780805493450  

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Item Description...
A quick step-by-step overview of some of the enduring treasures of the Christian faith. Best used alongside the classic itself - either in individual or group study. The faithful of all generations have found spiritual nourishment in the Scriptures and in the works of the Christians from earlier generations. Martin Luther and John Calvin would not have become who they were apart from their reading Augustine.

Publishers Description
Shepherd's Notes- Christian Classics Series is designed to give readers a quick, step by step overview of some of the enduring treasures of the Christian faith. They are designed to be used along side the classic itself- either in individual study or in a study group. The faithful of all generations have found spiritual nourishment in the Scriptures and in the works of Christians of earlier generations. Martin Luther and John Calvin would not have become who they were apart from their reading Augustine. God used the writings of Martin Luther to move John Wesley from a religion of dead works to an experience at Aldersgate in which his "heart was strangely warmed." Shepherd's Notes will give pastors, laypersons, and students access to some of the treasures of Christian faith.

Buy Shepherd's Notes: City of God (Shepherd's Notes. Christian Classics) by Terry L. Miethe & Dana Gould from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9780805493450 & 080549345X

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More About Terry L. Miethe & Dana Gould

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. Paraclete Essential Deluxe
  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?
Tough going, but worth it  May 14, 2008
It took me about five months of off-and-on reading to slog through City of God--it was time well-spent. Here is one of the rare 1000-page books that not only deserved its length, but could have been longer.

What astounded me about reading St. Augustine was how relevant he is, even after 1600 years. The vast majority of what he discusses throughout this monumental book still matters--only the particulars have changed. In his day, pagans blamed Christians for wars and the collapse of civilization. Rationalists and materialists denied the supernatural, insisting that all religions were the same, and mocked those that believed in it. And Christians themselves, under pressure and guilt from what seemed to be the entire known world, expressed doubts about their faith. Sound familiar? Only the particulars of all these situations have changed--in the broadstrokes, Christianity is still fighting many of the same battles in which Augustine saw combat.

This edition from Penguin Classics (I fully realize that this site will post this review on the Modern Library edition and other places that it doesn't belong) is very good. Henry Bettenson's translation is smooth, fast-moving, and heavily footnoted. While I found the footnotes very helpful--especially in the hundreds of places in which Augustine quotes from scripture and other authors, like Virgil and Plotinus--some of them struck me as unnecessary, particularly those criticizing Augustine's etymologies and those pointing out which gods or goddesses are or are not found outside Augustine's work. The most helpful notes were those describing puns or other untranslatable portions of the book.

Like I said, City of God is very heavy reading and a great deal of work to get through, but the reward should outweigh the time it takes to read the book.

Highly recommended.
The Best Kindle Edition of This Work   Mar 21, 2008
For those without a Kindle this review will have little to offer except to say that this edition comes with a preface by Thomas Merton which for me was a welcome surprise. I usually don't bother with introductions.

Kindle users, I looked at every Kindle edition of this work and this is without question the best formatted version. The only drawback is the lack of titles for each "book" in the table of contents. Instead they are just numbered; I, II, III, IV, and so on. There are also hyperlinked "footnotes," which I did not notice in other editions.

I apologize to Kindle non-owners, but this site has not yet presented away to comment specifically on electronic editions, and many public domain books--classics--are not yet properly formatted for the Kindle (which despite a few hitches is a five star device).
Unworthy printing of a most worthy version  Nov 2, 2007
This is not the most attractive edition of St. Augustine's monumental City of God but it is worth getting anyway for the introduction by Etienne Gilson. The translation is quite good and, though it is somewhat abridged, this doesn't pose too great a problem as Bourke has inserted into the text a brief description of the material that he cut out so you can go to an unabridged edition if you choose.
City of God  Aug 31, 2007
This is an apologetic text in defence of the Chritian faith. In this book, Augustine persuasively informed his audience (readers) regarding the history of creation from the fall of humanity to their redemption provided they recognized him as God of their lives. This is possible only as they abandon all forms of idolatries lest they experience a catatrosphe similar to what led to the fall of Rome. Augustine's concept of the two cities are in contrast to each other, viz, the city of God versus the city of Satan. The former is governed by God, and the later by the Devil that also governs the minds of many un-regenerated. Thus, Augustine appealed, in his 22 volumes that are now in a single volume, to join him "in rendering thanks to God" through this great work! Pastor Moses Oladele Taiwo, Ph.D. Professor of New Testament and Head of the Department of Urban Christian Ministry, New Life Theological Seminary, Charlotte, NC 28203. Tel: (704) 334 6884 Ext.106.
Some things are better read about than read  Aug 16, 2007
I read this for a book group I was in, and was rather peeved at being forced to blow so much time on what is essentially useful only to the Classical historian or Scholasticism buff. Realistically, Augustine is just a particularly eloquent proponent of a religious argument we all get in Sunday School at age 10: The things of this world are transitory and passing, but the things of the next world are eternal and more valuable. You can almost hear the monotonous cadence. If what you want is to add to your already-considerable knowledge of the particulars of late Roman civilization, then this is the book for you. If you're in seminary and reading Aquinas, and you're thinking, "I'd certainly like to know more about his major intellectual influences," then this is the book for you. But if what you want is an increased familiarity with the major ideas of Western civilization, then do yourself a favor and go pick up a pair of textbooks: one on ancient history, the other on classical philosophy. Augustine of Hippo will get a few pages in each one, and that's honestly all he's worth. Plowing through the entirety of The City of God for simple philosophical or theological curiosity would be like reading the complete works of Louis Agassiz just to see what scientific racism was like. Both efforts would be fruitful, in one sense, but in another sense you'd have spent an awful lot of time learning about antiquated theories.

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