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Christian Identity. Augustine On Faith, Hope, And Love

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Chapter Summary

When considering the concepts 'identity' and 'spirituality' in connection with Augustine, one cannot fail to reflect on faith, hope, and love. There can be neither be a Christian nor a Christian church where the characteristics are lacking. Enchiridion contains a compendium of Augustine's matured theological convictions. It should be borne in mind that the 'love' to which the bishop refers is an orderly love (ordo caritatis): first comes the love for God and then the love for man, through the love for God. A church without love and a Christian without love are, to the father of the church, tantamount to a square circle. True love finds the highest expression in the love for God and the neighbor. Through love one becomes a member of Christ and through love one is accepted into the organism of his body. The nearer Christians live to God, the nearer they will come together.

Keywords: Augustine; Christian identity; Enchiridion; faith; hope; love; spirituality

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