City of God


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City of God

  1. 1. St. Augustine: The City of God
  2. 2. Overview Who was Saint Augustine? What are the two cities? What lessons can we discern from St. Augustine’s conception of the two cities?
  3. 3. Aside: Context Towards the end of the Roman Empire, the Catholic Church became a significant political entity The relationship between Church and State became increasingly problematic
  4. 4. Also known as the doctrine of the two swords The doctrine submits that there are two swords of power: Sacred Royal The Gelasian doctrine sovereign in spiritual matters sovereign in temporal affairs
  5. 5. St. Augustine (354-430) African convert to Christianity Baptized into the Christian faith by St. Ambrose (387 AD) Became Bishop of Hippo in (396 AD) Wrote numerous treatises Recognized as a Father of the Church
  6. 6. City of God: Assumptions The City of God is a Catholic treatise Belief in one God God is the architect of all creation God is infinite truth and goodness
  7. 7. The Two Cities Human society can be divided into two cities depending on how men choose to live City of Man •Men choose to live according to themselves City of God •Men live according to God’s design/laws
  8. 8. The City of Man Those who live after the flesh Love of self, even to the contempt of God Basis of rule: the love of ruling Glories in human wisdom and strength Finite
  9. 9. The City of God Those who live after the Spirit Love of God, even to the contempt of self Basis of Rule: Love “There is no human wisdom, only godliness…” Everlasting
  10. 10. On The Two Cities… Both cities overlap Both desire peace The City of Man desires peace to enjoy earthly goods The aim of the City of God is to achieve eternal peace (eternal life in peace)
  11. 11. On The Two Cities… Both use earthly resources to attain their respective peace For the City of Man, this includes the waging of war For the City of God, the use of temporal things aids in the attainment of eternal peace
  12. 12. Analysis Both exhibit the fundamental concepts of rule, peace and justice Rule in the City of God is more constructive Service to those who are ruled Has its basis in duty
  13. 13. Analysis The peace achieved in the City of God is proper to man No lasting peace has befallen the City of Man Peace in the City of God suits man’s rational soul
  14. 14. Analysis True justice is only proper to the City of God “That virtue which gives every one his due.” A republic cannot be administered without justice Justice is rooted in God’s divine laws
  15. 15. Lessons There have to be underlying principles that govern human affairs Peace is a means to an end Rule or authority should be undertaken as a service or out of duty to one’s fellows