Augustine

Augustine on 'What Do I Love When I Love My God?'

What Do I Love When I Love My God? Today’s WORSHIP QUOTE dates from the fifth century. It is from the quill of Augustine, Bishop of Hippo in Northern Africa, and explores a believer’s love for God. Augustine asks, “What is it that I love when I love my God?” [Note: Please be sure to see the AUGUSTINE JAZZ BONUS at the bottom of this message. Did he say, “Augustine Jazz Bonus”? Yes, I did. Please take a look.]

WHAT DO I LOVE WHEN I LOVE MY GOD?
What is it then that I love when I love you? Not bodily beauty, and not temporal glory, not the clear shining light, lovely as it is to our eyes, not the sweet melodies of many-moded songs, not the soft smell of flowers and ointments and perfumes, not manna and honey, not limbs made for the body’s embrace, not these do I love when I love my God.

Yet I do love a certain light, a certain voice, a certain odor, a certain food, a certain embrace when I love my God: a light, a voice, an odor, a food, an embrace for the man within me, where his light, which no embrace can contain, floods into my soul; where he utters words that time does not speed away; where he sends forth an aroma that no wind can scatter; where he provides food that no eating can lessen; where he so clings that satiety does not sunder us. This is what I love when I love my God.


—Augustine of Hippo (354-430) from THE CONFESSIONS OF ST. AUGUSTINE, Book 10, Chapter 6, translated by John K. Ryan. Garden City, New York: Image Books, 1960, pp. 233-34. Here is the chapter at the Christian Classics Ethereal Library: www.ccel.org/ccel/augustine/confess.xi.vi.html


CHIPS THOUGHT'S

AUGUSTINE JAZZ BONUS: Recently, I was introduced to the music of a wonderful jazz group from Minneapolis—the Jason Harms Quintet. One of the tunes on their new CD is, you guessed it, “What Do I Love? (When I Love My God).” This entire song is available for you to hear at www.jasonharms.com/music.html. I hope you will take a moment to listen to this and some other samples from this terrific CD. Enjoy!


To learn more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.

Augustine on Joy

Today's Worship Quote of the Week is another from the quill of St. Augustine-a testimony to the total life of joyful worship.

THERE IS A JOY
There is a joy which is not given to the ungodly, but to those who love Thee for Thine own sake, whose joy Thou Thyself art. And this is the happy life, to rejoice to Thee, of Thee, for Thee; this it is, and there is no other.

-Augustine of Hippo (354-430), Confessions.


CHIP’S THOUGHTS

Lord, tune our hearts to sing your praise. May our prayer and worship be to you, of you, and for you alone. Amen!

Have a great week!


To learn more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.

Augustine on Emotion

Today we have a Worship Quote within a Worship Quote, a fifth century comment about the power, emotion and truth of church music as presented in Don Hustad's recent Jubilate II. Read on!

EMOTION
The use of music as an expression of emotion linked to theological truth is common in all churches. In the evangelical traditions where personal religious experience is emphasized, emotional expression is one of music's most important meanings; it is probably that function which folks refer to when they identify "music that speaks to the heart."  But this is not a new experience for churchgoers. St. Augustine mentioned it in the fifth century.

"How greatly did I weep in thy hymns and canticles, deeply moved by the voice of thy sweet-speaking Church! The voices flowed into mine ears, and the truth was poured forth into my heart, whence the agitation of my piety overflowed, and my tears ran over, and blessed was I therein."

The emotional power of music is perhaps best realized in the life of the church when proper music is well coupled to appropriate text. (Note that Augustine joins emotion with truth!) In this union, the music dramatizes, underlines, "breathes life" into the words, resulting in more meaning than the words themselves could express.

St. Augustine (354-430) as quoted in Donald Hustad's Jubilate II: Church Music in Worship and Renewal, Chapter 2, "Church Music: A Functional Art," Hope Publishing Co., 1993.


To learn more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.

Augustine "Late Have I Loved You"

Today's Worship Quote Of The Week comes from the quill of St. Augustine.

LATE HAVE I LOVED YOU
"Late have I loved you, O Beauty so ancient and so new; late have I loved you! You were within me, and I was outside; and I sought you outside and in my loneliness fell upon those lovely things that you have made. You were with me, but I was not with you ... You called me and cried to me and broke open my deafness; you sent forth your beams and shone upon me and chased away my blindness; you breathed your fragrance upon me, and I drew in my breath and now I pant for you; I tasted you, and now I hunger and thirst for you; you touched me, and I burn for your peace."

- Augustine of Hippo (354-430) from Confessions, as found in Eerdman’s Book of Christian Classics: A Treasury of Christian Writings Through the Centuries, compiled by Veronica Zundel, William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1985, p. 23.


CHIP'S THOUGHTS

There is something there that reminds me of the Psalm 42. Take a look! "As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God..."

Pant on!
Have a great day!


To learn more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.

Augustine on Holding Fast to Humility

Today's WORSHIP QUOTE comes from Augustine of Hippo concerning the important truth of the humiliation of God the Son (the Incarnation) as part of the great story of redemption.

HOLD FAST TO HUMILITY
All that springs from the humility of this sublime moment [the birthday of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ] is grasped by the faith of Christians, while far from the comprehension of the godless; since God "has hidden these things from the wise and the prudent, and revealed them to the little ones" (Luke 10:21).

So let the humble hold fast to the humility of God, so that this wonderful support may, like a beast of burden, lighten the burden of their weakness, and they may arrive at the heights of God. As for the wise and prudent, they aim at the loftiness of God without believing in his humble lowliness; and so, by overstepping his humility and reaching his loftiness, they have remained, empty and weightless, inflated and elated, dangling, as it were, at a windy middle level between heaven and earth.

They are indeed wise and prudent, but in the affairs of this world, not of the one by whom the world was made. Because if they were possessed of the true wisdom, which is from God and is God, they world understand that it was possible for flesh to be taken on by God without his being changed into flesh; they would understand that he took to himself what he was not, while remaining what he was; and that he came to us in a man without ever departing from the Father; and that he continued to be what he is, while appearing to us as what we are; and that his divine power was confined in the body of an infant without being withdrawn from the whole mass of the universe.

—Augustine of Hippo (354-430), from a Christmas sermon preached in the year 396, as found in Proclaiming the Christmas Gospel: Ancient Sermons and Hymns for Contemporary Inspiration, Edited by John D. Witvliet and David Vroege. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2004, page 30.
 


CHIP'S THOUGHTS

"O come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord."
"Where meek souls will receive him still, the dear Christ enters in."

Have a great week.


To find out more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.

Augustine on 'What Do I Love When I Love My God?'

What Do I Love When I Love My God? Today’s WORSHIP QUOTE dates from the fifth century. It is from the quill of Augustine, Bishop of Hippo in Northern Africa, and explores a believer’s love for God. Augustine asks, “What is it that I love when I love my God?” [Note: Please be sure to see the AUGUSTINE JAZZ BONUS at the bottom of this message. Did he say, “Augustine Jazz Bonus”? Yes, I did. Please take a look.]

WHAT DO I LOVE WHEN I LOVE MY GOD?
What is it then that I love when I love you? Not bodily beauty, and not temporal glory, not the clear shining light, lovely as it is to our eyes, not the sweet melodies of many-moded songs, not the soft smell of flowers and ointments and perfumes, not manna and honey, not limbs made for the body’s embrace, not these do I love when I love my God.

Yet I do love a certain light, a certain voice, a certain odor, a certain food, a certain embrace when I love my God: a light, a voice, an odor, a food, an embrace for the man within me, where his light, which no embrace can contain, floods into my soul; where he utters words that time does not speed away; where he sends forth an aroma that no wind can scatter; where he provides food that no eating can lessen; where he so clings that satiety does not sunder us. This is what I love when I love my God.


—Augustine of Hippo (354-430) from THE CONFESSIONS OF ST. AUGUSTINE, Book 10, Chapter 6, translated by John K. Ryan. Garden City, New York: Image Books, 1960, pp. 233-34. Here is the chapter at the Christian Classics Ethereal Library: www.ccel.org/ccel/augustine/confess.xi.vi.html


CHIPS THOUGHT'S

AUGUSTINE JAZZ BONUS: Recently, I was introduced to the music of a wonderful jazz group from Minneapolis—the Jason Harms Quintet. One of the tunes on their new CD is, you guessed it, “What Do I Love? (When I Love My God).” This entire song is available for you to hear at www.jasonharms.com/music.html. I hope you will take a moment to listen to this and some other samples from this terrific CD. Enjoy!


To find out more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.