St Augustine of Hippo

Collect

Oh Lord God, who art the light of the minds that know thee, the life of the souls that love thee, and the strenghth of the hearts that serve thee: Help us after the example of they servant St Augustine, so to know thee that we may truly love thee, so to love thee that we may fully serve thee, whom to serve is perfect freedom; Through Jesus Christ our Lord.

St Augustine of Hippo was the heart of early Christian theology, and the ‘modern’ father of the Church.

In the Catholic Church and the Anglican Communion, he is a saint, a pre-eminent Doctor of the Church, and the patron of the Augustinians. His memorial is celebrated on 28 August, the day of his death. He is the patron saint of brewers, printers, theologians, the alleviation of sore eyes, and a number of cities and dioceses. Many Protestants, especially Calvinists, consider him to be one of the theological fathers of the Protestant Reformation due to his teachings on salvation and divine grace.

We give thanks to God this day for his contributions to the Church.

Food for thought….

The author of the New Testament “Letter to the Hebrews,” was apparently writing at a time, like ours, when there was great disagreement, both within the church and the wider culture, about the character and identity of the man called Jesus, attempted to clear things up when he wrote: “Jesus Christ, the same, yesterday, today and forever.”

The apostle Paul poured out his life to present the Christian message. He traveled from country to country, braving storm and death, trying the keep divided churches together, but no sooner had he squelched one controversy than another sprang up in its place.

New teachers and prophets appeared everywhere. There were factions and splinter groups everywhere. From the outset, church leaders saw the need for organization, for this new religion was literally bursting at the seams.

By mid-second century Alexandrian exegetes had placed Hebrews among the letters of Paul, though they recognized that it was so different in language and style from that of Paul that some special account of Hebrews authorship was required.

Thus it was thought that Luke might have translated the letter for Paul into Hebrew, this was proven wrong, as the translation could not have been from Greek. In any case, Hebrews 2:3-4 suggests that the author comes form a generation after the apostles.