That Jesus Christ was not God is evident from his own words, where, speaking of the day of judgment, he says, "Of that day and hour knoweth no man, no not the angels which are in Heaven, neither the Son, but the Father." This is giving up all pretention to divinity, acknowledging in the most explicit manner, that he did not know all things, but compares his understanding to that of man and angels; "of that day and hour knoweth no man, no not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son." Thus he ranks himself with finite beings, and with them acknowledges, that he did not know the day and hour of judgment, and at the same time ascribes a superiority of knowledge to the father, for that he knew the day and hour of judgment.
To suppose that God Almighty has confined his goodness to this world, to the exclusion of all others, is much similar to the idle fancies of some individuals in this world, that they, and those of their communion or faith, are the favorites of heaven exclusively; but these are narrow and bigoted conceptions, which are degrading to a rational nature, and utterly unworthy of God, of whom we should form the most exalted ideas.
Oh father high in heaven smile down upon your son
Who's busy with his money games his women and his gun.
Indeed, I am a safeguard to the inhabitants of earth as the stars are safeguards to the inhabitants of heaven.
Even as in the blessed in heaven there will be most perfect charity, so in the damned there will be the most perfect hate. Wherefore as the saints will rejoice in all goods, so will the damned grieve for all goods. Consequently the sight of the happiness of the saints will give them very great pain; hence it is written (Isaiah 26:11): "Let the envious people see and be confounded, and let fire devour Thy enemies." Therefore they will wish all the good were damned.
O saving Victim, opening wide
The gate of heaven to man below,
Our foes press on from every side,
Thine aid supply, Thy strength bestow.
Thus Angels' Bread is made
The Bread of man today:
The Living Bread from Heaven
With figures doth away:
O wondrous gift indeed!
The poor and lowly may
Upon their Lord and Master feed.
With the color that paints the morning and evening clouds that face the sun I saw then the whole heaven suffused.
Heaven, to keep its beauty,
cast them out, but even Hell itself would not receive them
for fear the wicked there might glory over them.
Through our soul is our contact with heaven.
Each sinner transformed into a saint is a new token of a redeeming power among men. That token declares to observers, not that there is a King in heaven, not that there is a "Father of Lights," but that there is a Saviour. And this is the testimony that the world especially needs.
What is the use of believing, if the dost blaspheme? Thou adorest Him as Head, and dost blaspheme Him in His body. He loves His body. Thou canst cut thyself off from the body, but the Head does not detach itself from its body. "Thou dost honor me in vain," He cries from heaven, "thou dost honor Me in vain!" If someone wished to kiss thy cheek, but insisted at the same time on trampling thy feet; if with his hailed boots he were to crush thy feet as he tries to hold thy head and kiss thee, wouldst thou not interrupt his expression of respect and cry out: "What are thou doing, man? Thou art trampling upon me!" ...
It is for this reason that before He ascended into heaven our Lord Jesus Christ recommended to us His body, by which He was to remain upon earth. For He foresaw that many would pay Him homage because of His glory in heaven, but that their homage would be in vain, so long as they despise His members on earth.
The Apostle says: I make up in my flesh what is lacking to the sufferings of Christ (Col. 1:24). I make up, he tells us, not what is lacking to my sufferings, but what is lacking to the sufferings of Christ; not in Christs flesh, but in mine. not in Christ's flesh, but in mine. Christ is still suffering, not in His own flesh which He took with Him into heaven, but in my flesh, which is still suffering on earth.
Usually, even a non-Christian knows something about the earth, the heavens, and the other elements of this world, about the motion and orbit of the stars and even their size and relative positions, about the predictable eclipses of the sun and moon, the cycles of the years and the seasons, about the kinds of animals, shrubs, stones, and so forth, and this knowledge he hold to as being certain from reason and experience. Now, it is a disgraceful and dangerous thing for an infidel to hear a Christian, presumably giving the meaning of Holy Scripture, talking nonsense on these topics; and we should take all means to prevent such an embarrassing situation, in which people show up vast ignorance in a Christian and laugh it to scorn. The shame is not so much that an ignorant individual is derided, but that people outside the household of faith think our sacred writers held such opinions, and, to the great loss of those for whose salvation we toil, the writers of our Scripture are criticized and rejected as unlearned men. If they find a Christian mistaken in a field which they themselves know well and hear him maintaining his foolish opinions about our books, how are they going to believe those books in matters concerning the resurrection of the dead, the hope of eternal life, and the kingdom of heaven, when they think their pages are full of falsehoods and on facts which they themselves have learnt from experience and the light of reason? Reckless and incompetent expounders of Holy Scripture bring untold trouble and sorrow on their wiser brethren when they are caught in one of their mischievous false opinions and are taken to task by those who are not bound by the authority of our sacred books. For then, to defend their utterly foolish and obviously untrue statements, they will try to call upon Holy Scripture for proof and even recite from memory many passages which they think support their position, although they understand neither what they say nor the things about which they make assertion.
The philosophers who wished us to have the gods for our friends rank the friendship of the holy angels in the fourth circle of society, advancing now from the three circles of society on earth to the universe, and embracing heaven itself. And in this friendship we have indeed no fear that the angels will grieve us by their death or deterioration. But as we cannot mingle with them as familiarly as with men (which itself is one of the grievances of this life), and as Satan, as we read, sometimes transforms himself into an angel of light, to tempt those whom it is necessary to discipline, or just to deceive, there is great need of Gods mercy to preserve us from making friends of demons in disguise, while we fancy we have good angels for our friends; for the astuteness and deceitfulness of these wicked spirits is equalled by their hurtfulness.
But the inner part is the better part; for to it, as both ruler and judge, all these messengers of the senses report the answers of heaven and earth and all the things therein, who said, "We are not God, but he made us." My inner man knew these things through the ministry of the outer man, and I, the inner man, knew all this I, the soul, through the senses of my body. I asked the whole frame of earth about my God, and it answered, "I am not he, but he made me."
I was saying these things and weeping in the most bitter contrition of my heart, when suddenly I heard the voice of a boy or a girl I know not which--coming from the neighboring house, chanting over and over again, "Take up and read; take up and read." Immediately I ceased weeping and began most earnestly to think whether it was usual for children in some kind of game to sing such a song, but I could not remember ever having heard the like. So, damming the torrent of my tears, I got to my feet, for I could not but think that this was a divine command to open the Bible and read the first passage I should light upon. For I had heard how Anthony, accidentally coming into church while the gospel was being read, received the admonition as if what was read had been addressed to him: "Go and sell what you have and give it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come and follow me" (Matt. 19:21). By such an oracle he was forthwith converted to thee. So I quickly returned to the bench where Alypius was sitting, for there I had put down the apostles book when I had left there. I snatched it up, opened it, and in silence read the paragraph on which my eyes first fell: "Not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying, but put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill the lusts thereof" (Rom. 13:13). I wanted to read no further, nor did I need to. For instantly, as the sentence ended, there was infused in my heart something like the light of full certainty and all the gloom of doubt vanished away.
Man always acts either self-loving, just for the hell of it, or God-loving, just for the heaven of it; his reasons, his appetites are secondary motivations. Man chooses either life or death, but he chooses; everything he does, from going to the toilet to mathematical speculation, is an act of religious worship, either of God or of himself.
Lastly by the classical apotheosis of Man-God, Augustine oppose the Christian belief in Jesus Christ, the God-Man. The former is a Hercules who compels recognition by the great deeds he does in establishing for the common people in the law, order and prosperity they cannot establish for themselves, by his manifestation of superior power; the latter reveals to fallen man that God is love by suffering, i.e. by refusing to compel recognition, choosing instead to be a victim of man's self-love. The idea of a sacrificial victim is not new; but that it should be the victim who chooses to be sacrificed, and the sacrificers who deny that any sacrifice has been made, is very new.
Choose to love whomsoever thou wilt: all else will follow. Thou mayest say, "I love only God, God the Father." Wrong! If Thou lovest Him, thou dost not love Him alone; but if thou lovest the Father, thou lovest also the Son. Or thou mayest say, "I love the Father and I love the Son, but these alone; God the Father and God the Son, our Lord Jesus Christ who ascended into heaven and sitteth at the right hand of the Father, the Word by whom all things were made, the Word who was made flesh and dwelt amongst us; only these do I love." Wrong again! If thou lovest the Head, thou lovest also the members; if thou lovest not the members, neither dost thou love the Head.
Yet what are seas and what is air? For all
Is God, and but a talisman are heaven and earth
To veil Divinity. For heaven and earth,
Did He not permeate them, were but names;
Know then, that both this visible world and that
Which unseen is, alike are God Himself,
Naught is, save God: and all that is, is God.
By My life! But for the obligation to acknowledge the Cause of Him Who is the Testimony of God ... I would not have announced this unto thee... All the keys of heaven God hath chosen to place on My right hand, and all the keys of hell on My left...
In the Name of the Almighty, the Best Beloved.
Lauded and glorified is He Who is the sovereign Lord of the kingdoms of heaven and earth and whatever is between them. Say, verily unto Him shall all return, and He is the One Who guideth at His Own behest whomsoever He pleaseth. Say, all men beseech His blessings and He is supreme over all created things. He is indeed the All-Glorious, the Mighty, the Well-Beloved.
The first revolt is against the supreme tyranny of theology, of the phantom of God. As long as we have a master in heaven, we will be slaves on earth.
I cannot be content with less than heaven.
I cannot be content with less than heaven;
Living, and comprehensive of all life.
Thee, universal heaven, celestial all;
Thee, sacrjd seat of intellective time;
Field of the soul's best wisdom: home of truth,