Christian History Institute

Sharing our story of faith across the ages

Articles tagged with bible commentators


15 Nov 2003

The First Bible Teachers: Did You Know?

by the Editors | Issue 80

Great grandfather of medieval culture?

Clement of Alexandria (ca. 160–215) began the monumental project that would culminate in the Middle Ages—to place all of Western culture on a biblical foundation. Robert Wilken calculates there are between seven and eight biblical citations on every page of Clement’s writings, which contain, in all, some 1,500 references to the Old Testament and 3,000 to the New Testament. His writings are “suffused with [the Bible’s] language, its forms of expressions, its images and metaphors, its stories. Its heroes...

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15 Nov 2003

Augustine vs. Literalism

by Christopher A. Hall | Issue 80

THERE ARE PASSAGES in the Bible—obvious figures of speech, metaphors—that modern readers would not even think to take literally. But during the period of the early church, some of these passages still caused confusion among the uninitiated, giving enemies of Christianity fodder for their attacks. Among the confused ones was, at one point in his life, Augustine himself.

In the last months before his conversion, the brilliant young orator had become disenchanted with the Manichaean philosophy to which he had adhered. He was finding himself...

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15 Nov 2003

Augustine’s Key

by Gerald Bray | Issue 80

FEW PEOPLE TODAY would doubt that Augustine of Hippo (354–430) was the greatest writer of the early Christian church. Certainly, he has left us more books than anyone else. For centuries, most of the Western Church took its understanding of Christian doctrine from him, and his influence lingers even today.

From the moment he heeded the voice in the garden to “Take and read,” Augustine had a close relationship with the Bible. But he was never a biblical scholar as such. Even in his own time, he was outclassed by his great contemporary...

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