Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Hump Day History: St. Augustine’s City of God

It’s been downhill for awhile for me. I turn 37 tomorrow and when I was reading Augustine’s City of God earlier this year he was grappling with the question of what our eternal bodies would be like. For instance, would a baby who died be a full-grown person, or would they be in the state of an infant for eternity. More specifically, he wonders if we’ll all be the same size as Jesus since He’s perfection. I honestly don’t remember the conclusions, but the constant refrain is that “not a hair of our head will be harmed.” God will take care of us, eternally.

The part that struck me as humorous – less so now – is when he states that it’s all downhill after 30. Behold, Augustine on age…

“For even the world’s wisest men have fixed the bloom of youth at about the age of thirty; and when this period has been passed, the man begins to decline towards the defective and duller period of old age” (p. 838-839).
It’s all downhill from here! And it has been … for years!

9 comments:

HH said...

Hi. I really liked your blog. The part about god taking care of our problems really reminded me of George Fellendorf's blog http://fellendorf.wordpress.com/. It's a really interesting blog, and I think you may enjoy it. Thank you for sharing. God Bless.

Byewaybill said...

Justin;
At several weeks past my 78th. birth anniversary, i can't bring myself to feel sorry for you - or Augustine. He was quite a character of course, and although obviously highly intelligent, he was also exceptionally narrow-minded and opinionated.

I'm always amused by folks who, like Augustine, fret about silly things like how big someone's glorified body might be. I hear questions like that from catechumens and I usually ask them why they are wasting their valuable mental energy pursuing insignificancies when they are still far from understanding essentials. If I could speak directly to St. Augustine, I'd ask him the same ... what possible value would this information have for the salvation of your soul, or for furthering your pursuit of God's will?

Life, as I suspect you will agree, is too short to waste time chasing phantoms when this may be your last day on earth.

Theologically more to the point, I think that "eternity" and "infinity" are concepts we cannot comprehend, so neither can we hope to actually understand the characteristics of the glorified body. Let's just wait and be surprised when we get there!

Marissa said...

Maybe we go downhill so that when we meet our creator our new body will be appreciated. I have Multiple Sclerosis, and I can't wait for a perfect body for eternity!

Justin said...

Thanks for all the insightful comments on what I intended to be a humorous post prior to my birthday. Your comments put my silliness into perspective and gave some substantive food for thought. God bless y'all.

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oldtimegal said...

I'm 74 and I put my faith in Jesus....how could I be happy in heaven if my children
don't make it??? What will our bodies be like in heaven....? Don't waist your time on silly question, make your time on earth worthwhile and make sure you get to heaven by "rightly dividing the word of God" and the rest will take care of itself.

lil corner said...

not a hair on our head being harmed...that's comforting. I just turned 39. lol

lil corner said...

not a hair on our head being harmed...that's comforting. I just turned 39. lol

Anonymous said...

Enjoyed reading

the report - most informative thanks