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The Enchiridion on Fai...
 
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Augustine of Hippo
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The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope, and Love

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  244 ratings  ·  25 reviews
Written by St. Augustine late in his life with the intention of supplying the Roman layman with a comprehensive exposition of the basic teachings of Christianity.
Paperback, 173 pages
Published December 31st 1961 by Regnery Publishing (first published December 1st 420)
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Kristen
The Enchiridion is one of Augustine's most approachable texts. Written as an introduction to the faith, it is simple and straightforward, and does not necessitate a firm grasp of the historical context in order to understand it. As he explains the creed and the Lord's Prayer, the most basic and important theological points he stood for become apparent. There are moments of great humour and representative comments that give the reader a feel for his personality and larger work.

This would be appro...more
Drew Darby
Although I don't agree with Augustine on several points, I have to admit that this is a brilliant, compact, and dense little work. Several times I raised objections to some proposition or another, and in the immediately following section the objections would be treated! That doesn't mean I was always convinced, but I was impressed with the thoughtfulness. I don't know if I've ever had an experience with a book quite like that! As an encapsulation, it would serve as a good introduction to Augusti...more
Tim
This little work was a pleasure to read. It consists of Augustine's thoughts on the Nicene Creed (faith) the Lord's Prayer (hope) and a short discourse on Christian love. It will serve as a good introduction to Augustine's theological thought.

For my part, I love Augustine's emphasis on the primacy of grace. His defense of the sacramental system is irritating, as it seems very weak. Finally, his take on faith and works is quite disappointing. He does not clearly distinguish between justification...more
Skipper Boatwright
If you are looking for a clear concise summary of Augustine's theology, this is it. In 140 pages, Augustine presents his doctrine of original sin, gives his fascinating theory of the non-existence of evil, and also presents what he believes to be the core teachings of the Christian faith. Although you will probably find things to disagree with, such as his belief of why God elected men for salvation, the majority of this short work is a solid and well written summary of Augustine's beliefs.
Wendy
This is the first Augustine that I've read -- mostly because his other works are significantly larger and more dense than this one. But I enjoyed this one so much that I may try to tackle some others. Anything that I could say about Augustine has been said many times before by many other people, so I won't repeat myself. But if you're interested in reading Augustine, I'd recommend this as a good starting point.
Kristin
It's really amazing how a book written so long ago can contain so many truths and statements accurate to our lives and faith today. Although Augustine can get a bit wordy at times, this is definitely a must-read for Christians who are serious about the theology of our faith. Make sure you read it with someone, though. Discussion helps break through the wordiness!
Michael Austin
One of the many insightful things Augustine has to say:

"For when we ask whether someone is a good man, we are not asking what he believes, or hopes, but what he loves. Now, beyond all doubt, he who loves aright believes and hopes rightly. Likewise, he who does not love believes in vain, even if what he believes is true."
Eric
An excellent and short Augustine read. He outlines faith and talks about God's sovereignty and the basics of the Christian faith. He has some great thought provoking sections like the mediation between God and man. He also writes about the giving of alms and penance.
Robert
I've an old paperback copy, A Gateway Edition, edited and with an introduction by Henry Paolucci, and including historical analysis by Adolph von Harnack. (1961) A fine introduction to Augustinian Christianity. Perhaps because the world has turned so dark, in so many corners, I thought why not pick up a book that concerns itself with notions of faith, sin, grace, and, of course, love. So much that's contrary to the sloppy and self-regarding manner in which most of us waste our ever diminishing d...more
Nathan
I picked up the free audio version of St. Augustine's "Handbook" at LibriVox and really enjoyed it in three different ways:

1. For its historical value. Augustine of Hippo writes in the fifth century, not too long after the New Testament was written, and it's interesting to see how his conception of the Christian faith is different from today.

2. Listening to a great mind at work. It's not an accident that Augustine is one of the church's most famous theologians. It's particularly fascinating to s...more
John
I've been meaning to read this little book for some time, and it found its way to me at just the right time. Augustine's thoughts in the first half of the work, which address the weariness and discouragement felt by a teaching deacon within the church at Carthage, provide both a relevant and wise frame for thinking about the teaching of spiritual things.

Not only does Augustine see clearly into the problems that teachers in the church face, but he helpfully discusses the solutions, using the love...more
Tess
A lot of St. Augustine's methods of examining things are mind-blowing to me. The material is dense, and I had to read a lot of sentences 3 times before grasping them. But it's totally worth it. I love his outlook on evil: "Unless something is good, it cannot be corrupted, because corruption is nothing more than the deprivation of the good. Evils, therefore, have their source in the good, and unless they are parasitic on something good, they are not anything at all." This reminds me not to focus...more
A.C. Bauch
i'm not even sure how to rate this book, but i definitely enjoyed it. while i don't agree 100% with augustine's ideas and doctrines, i did appreciate many of the clear and precise ways he explains some of Christianity's more complex ideas. it's pretty amazing what he was able to accomplish in a mere 112 pages. some theologians have filled entire volumes trying to explain a topic augustine succinctly covers in a page. not sure if i'd ever read this book again, but i'm keeping it in my library for...more
David
This handbook is a must read for anyone interested in in doing theology and in the study of the history of theology. From this man came ideas and concepts that still are influencing Western Theology. I wish that he had written more on love and less on sin. But hey I am one of the top three theologians of Western Christianity. The book, pages, and paragraphs take time and effort.
Rob
The Enchiridion is the handbook on Augustinian Christianity. I really enjoyed this book. In it, Augustine explains a number of Christian doctrines (including predestination and grace), answers heresies, and addresses believers' concerns that aren't directly addressed in Scripture. I intend to quote from this book whenever I get a chance.
Aaron
Feb 17, 2008 Aaron rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: philosophy buffs, Church history buffs
A good book. Augustine cuts to the heart of some issues, and makes some things clear. He's definitely a philosopher, and comes at theology and the Bible with a philosopher's eye.
Ilya Kozlov
he puts it very clear what is it all about for a beginner.....whole Churh teaching in one little book.....u ll have alitttle fire going in your chest (thats his goal)
Eric English
This work was surprisingly archaic and poorly argued. As one of his later works, I would have expected a more reasoned work.
Jeff Locke
Classic work. Augustine spends way more time on faith than the other two. Challenging in places, not the most helpful in others.
Kristan Anne
Reading this for school. I have to write a paper comparing this to Lucretius' "De Rereum Natura".
Alex Stroshine
A concise and informative little book. I believe the edition I read is an abbreviated version.
Joe Spencer
A curious little piece, though one must confess that Augustine never really gets beyond faith.
Peter N.
An excellent short work by Augustine. Many of his most famous quotes I found in here.
§--
Worth the price of admission if only for his analysis of evil and suffering.
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Augustine of Hippo, also known as St. Augustine, St. Austin, was bishop of Hippo Regius (present-day Annaba, Algeria). He was a Latin philosopher and theologian from the Africa Province of the Roman Empire and is generally considered as one of the greatest Christian thinkers of all times. His writings were very influential in the development of Western Christianity. According to his contemporary J...more
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“Among us, on the other hand, 'the righteous man lives by faith.' Now, if you take away positive affirmation, you take away faith, for without positive affirmation nothing is believed. And there are truths about things unseen, and unless they are believed, we cannot attain to the happy life, which is nothing less than life eternal. It is a question whether we ought to argue with those who profess themselves ignorant not only about the eternity yet to come but also about their present existence, for they [the Academics] even argue that they do not know what they cannot help knowing. For no one can 'not know' that he himself is alive. If he is not alive, he cannot 'not know' about it or anything else at all, because either to know or to 'not know' implies a living subject. But, in such a case, by not positively affirming that they are alive, the skeptics ward off the appearance of error in themselves, yet they do not make errors simply by showing themselves alive; one cannot err who is not alive. That we live is therefore not only true, but it is altogether certain as well. And there are many things that are thus true and certain concerning which, if we withhold positive assent, this ought not to be regarded as a higher wisdom but actually a sort of dementia.” 3 likes
“This, then, is true liberty: the joy that comes in doing what is right. At the same time, it is also devoted service in obedience to righteous precept.” 2 likes
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