Friday, February 16, 2007

Confessions by Augustine

I've decided to start a new series on this blog called "Weekend Read." My goal is to publish the weekend read near the end of the week. It's main purpose is for all the people who are contemplating a weekend trip to Border or Barnes and Nobles to pick up a book to start for that weekend.

Initially I thought about maybe the "Weekend Read" being something I posted monthly. My goal is to do it weekly, but honestly with my schedule I'm not going to be legalistic about if I miss a week or anything like that. I had thought before about doing it monthly, but I've read a lot and don't plan on slowing down.

Here are something to expect:

1)This will range the whole gamut from theology, classic literature, plays, sports books, etc.
2)Wide spectrum of quality of books will be covered, so all book will be graded. Just an fyi, only two books will receive a 100%
3)I can sometimes be turned off when I come go to Amazon.com and someone has written a review that is a novel in and of itself. None of these reviews will be ultra long, but don't expect one sentence earlier.


My first weekend read was inspired by Robin's review of Confessions in the CLC newsletter. If you read Robin's endorsement of Confessions and are still undecided about if it is for you, then hop off the fence and join the many who have read Confessions and realize why it isn't just theological, but a classic as well.

Confessions begins with the famous line: "You made us for yourself and our hearts find no rest in you." The plot of Confessions is simple (unlike Augustine's other famous work, "City of God), it tells the tale of Augustine's conversion. Essential to Augustine's conversion is the goodness of God (evidenced by the quote above) and the nature of sin. Augustine, like all of us, was a hedonist, but unlike the rest of us, Augustine does not make excuse for his sin but says that the reason why he sinned is because it was his desire.

The beauty of reading Augustine is that he was a great thinker and philosopher. In his Confessions we see how the philosophy of his day influenced him in his younger years, but as Augustine gets older we also see the care and love of Monica (his mother) which aids in his conversion as Augustine is confronted with the supremacy of God's Word over any philosophy. Confessions, unlike modern conversion stories (see: Blue Like Jazz) is theologically sound and presents a holy God that is the source of man's joy.

Grade: A 95%

Few things that I would change about this book. It doesn't reach the perfect standard, but few books do. This is one of those books that not only affected my theological understanding, but also application specifically related to my joy found in God.

2 comments:

momellis2 said...

Wow, Lew, I've been reading thst book for a number of years. It is one of my "regulars" that I include in my quiet time. It truely is "heart changing" I look forward to reading your weekend reviews!Love, Mom

Jess said...

I've had a goal to do a lot of reading this year and am always looking for great reading material. I'll be keeping an eye on these posts - this one has already caught my attention, to be added to my must read list.