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On Augustine's City of God - Essay Example

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Name: Course: Instructor: Date: Augustine’s interpretation of the history of Greece/Rome as that of the ‘city of man’ Augustine denounces the historical narratives for misleading the people into thinking that Rome was being punished for deviating from their pagan Gods and that this was the cause of the fall of Rome in 410…
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Essay on Augustines City of God
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On Augustine's City of God

Download file to see previous pages... Augustine also says that on the sacking of the city, it was not uncommon for all invaders including Romans and Greeks to do the same this included the likes of Ulysses, Phoenix and Diomede. For this reason, the sacking of Rome was not something that could be blamed on Christians but was instead a common activity that was part of war (I, 2). The Visigoths and other European barbarian tribes had grown in strength over the years and they raided Rome in 410 under King Alaric. Feelings of resentment had also developed among the poorer population of Rome due to high inflation rates and lack of political representation since the position of councilor was hereditary. These factors had therefore weakened the empire of Rome internally and when the time came that the Visigoths invaded it was not the strong empire it had been in previous years. Prior to the invasion, Christians were already being viewed with suspicion and had been barred from working in high ranking offices, the view that they were to blame for the fall of Rome therefore came as a natural expectation as a scapegoat was necessary. Lucretia was a woman who was believed to have been raped and out of guilt she committed suicide. Augustine uses the rape of Lucretia as an example to cite to teach Christianity about Chastity. Augustine says that and anyone who is forced to have sexual relations and does not consent to them has not committed a sin. A woman should however not commit suicide for such an act being committed on them, as it will bar them from entering the kingdom of God. The story of Lucretia has never been confirmed as an event that actually happened but remains a significant story that relates to the establishment of the Roman Empire. Lucretia’s suicide is what led people to revolt and remove the old establishment and thus symbolized what the Roman Empire stood for; respect for all irrespective of gender or social class. The story did however also show that the Roman Empire was established as a patriarchy as the men rebel in vengeance of a woman who overwhelmed by shame could not muster the courage to continue living her life and relied on the strength of men to avenge for her. The relationship of Augustine and Christians to the ‘city of man’ Augustine in the city of God believes that in actuality there are two cities; there is Rome the city that has been developed by men as an economic bloc and there is the religious Rome that is a city built by God and whose foundation is Christian religion. Augustine therefore shows that there is always going to be a conflict between the way men want to live their lives and the way they should live their lives according to the Lords commandments. Augustine wrote the book after the sacking of Rome by the Visigoths and therefore uses the book to explain that under the laws of God no one dies at a time not planned by him. In addition, that they could not live their lives in fear of death more so if they did live according to the laws of God and not just the laws of man (II, 15). As men, one should not be afraid to show that they are living under the laws of the city of God even if living in a nation that does not recognizes these laws. Therefore, it is better to be courageous and ready to sacrifice oneself for your convictions for God will restore you in heaven than to live constantly afraid of persecution. On the view of the life or Rome, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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