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CITY OF GOD (Augustine)









Ron Harmer being baptised as his wife Debbie watches

Ron  was religious, but did not find rest. But the love of God has dropped from his head to his heart, and after so many years of restlessness, he has found his rest in God. Ron is a transformed man — showing us all the power of God!











quote-you-have-made-us-for-yourself-o-lord-and-our-hearts-are-restless-until-they-rest-in-you-saint-augustine-208007AUGUSTINE IS CERTAINLY ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL CHRISTIANS THAT EVER LIVED.







“Great are you God, and greatly to be praised.” (Ps. 48:1)






Because this is a holiday week, lessons will be short this week and next. All I want you to do this week is listen to a great lecture on Augustine and the City of God and then take one more look at Psalm 48. Next week will be a short week on Psalm 49, the last in this series on the sons of Korah.

1. What stood out to you from the above and why?


2. Listen to the following and share your notes or thoughts. The Q and A at the end is optional. (Since 2004 Nick Needham has been the minister of Inverness Reformed Baptist Church. He has taught in Scotland at Edinburgh University and the Scottish Baptist College, and also in Africa.) Mike Reeves also has some wonderful talks on Augustine which you may want to listen to as well, but I chose this for it is excellent and Needham centers on the “City of God,” of which Psalm 48 speaks.

3. Now, take another look at Psalm 48 and see if you see anything new or helpful for your life.


4. What is your take-a-way and why?



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  1. 1.  What stood out to you from the above and why?
    Ron’s testimony.  I WEPT right now as I read it and am still sitting here with tears streaming down my face.  To see in my mind’s eye this burly, tough Vietnam survivor walking his dogs in the woods and being simply overcome by the unmerited grace and favor of our Lord….oh, the power and love of our God – what more can I say?  There is this:  Ron reminds me of some in my life….my dear husband for one….tough, tough, tough.  But restless.  Ron’s transformed life causes JOY and HOPE to rise in my heart – hope in our Sovereign, Living God!!!  Amen.  How I thank you Dee, for sharing this with us.  😉  

    1. Jackie, I’ll be praying for your husband!

      1. Dawn – thank you so much for those prayers…..I LOVE to think of our prayers mingling together and rising like incense into our Father’s nostrils and pleasing Him so!  PIcturing this prayer of yours in the mix right now…..and feeling so grateful words cannot express.  🙂  

  2. Struck by the expression of. Ron’s face.. signals a new confidence.. When we encounter. the risen Christ our faces need not be downcast anymore. We can look up and be.and not be ashamed to gaze upon our Savior. There is a sense that our hearts are bowed in humility. But we are no longer bound by sin n by the law.. just as Ron would kneel in gratitude for the peace he has received in and through through Christ. Situation’s is one of my favorites and reminded me of Audrey Assad’s song, Restless.

    1. Bing–love this “We can look up and be.and not be ashamed to gaze upon our Savior.”

  3. “bowed* instead of booked. Lol and Augustine’s instead of situations. Lol x2

    1. Bing – how I love seeing you back here…..and how wonderful to laugh together !!  

  4. 1. What stood out to you from the above and why?
    I love the photo of Ron being baptized, and his story of transformation after so many years of restlessness, he has found his rest in God. I looked up the definition of restless: characterized by or manifesting unrest, especially of mind. Uneasy, unquiet. Lacking or denying rest. Then, I looked at the passage in Hebrews 3 that described the Israelites who never entered into the land God had promised to them, never entered into His rest, because of their lack of trust in Him. A portion of that passage, from The Living Bible, says, “The Holy Spirit warns us to listen to Him, to be careful to hear His voice today and not let our hearts become set against Him, as the people of Israel did. They steeled themselves against His love and complained against Him in the desert while He was testing them. But God was patient with them forty years, though they tried His patience sorely; He kept right on doing His mighty miracles for them to see. “But”, God says, “I was very angry with them, for their hearts were always looking somewhere else instead of up to Me, and they never found the paths I wanted them to follow.” Then God….bound Himself with an oath that He would never let them come to His place of rest. Beware then of your own hearts, dear brothers, lest you find that they, too, are evil and unbelieving and are leading you away from the living God.”
    This is sobering to me because this was written to believers (dear brothers), so it is a warning to look at my own heart, to see if I am looking somewhere else instead of up to God. Religion can be a way of doing that, running to idols can be a way of doing that. I can feel restless at times, too, and it has to be because I am not trusting Him, not really believing and valuing what He says, or looking to someone or something else. And, I believe this whole story or picture of the people not being able to enter into the land has so many spiritual layers….as to what it pictures. I am so happy for Ron and the others who have now entered into His rest!

    1. Susan, I love to see how you have grown in Christ. You are such an encouragement to me!!

    2. Susan-Thank you for taking the time to write what God is quickening you with in Hebrews. What a wonderful weaving you have done with our study this week!!  I want to encourage you that I feel the same way! I had THE WORST Monday EVER. 🙁 Well I know there are worse things that can happen..but it seemed like everything was stressful-work, my boys, etc. I totally failed in so many ways taking my eyes off Him..but I am SO grateful it drove me to Him in the night on my bed- which is sweet and again made me long for that rock in the stream to be completely removed. I read a meme on fb from Tozer that said something like, just think of those sweet times with God when you really sense His presence here..and then imagine the future when you taste him in full every minute-every day. No more baal-no more grieving Him..Even to think that He loves us so much that it grieves Him when we look to others..that moves me!!  It’s going to be amazing.  

  5. Susan – I love how God led you to the Hebrews passage and you wove it skillfully into the discussion here!  In the past winter/spring our pastor taught through the book of Hebrews – wow.  One thing I learned that it is important to remember (maybe particularly in Hebrews!) is that, though the letter was  written to believers, there were also unbelievers listening to the letter in their midst – much like in our churches today.  Some of the warnings were of particular import to those unbelievers in their midst….to examine their hearts, for “evil and unbelieving” hearts doesn’t sound like a true Christian.  But what seems to our ears as perhaps harsh warnings are so much the GRACE of our loving God!  And yes, as you have so well said, we need to examine our own hearts even as believers – I vividly remember one time, over 25 years ago, when I was a new Christian.  I was on the phone with my beloved Aunt Geri and was complaining heartily about something (I don’t even remember what!)…..she took that conversation as an opportunity to gently lead me to 1 Corinthians 10:1-22….particularly verses 9&10!  Oh my.  My mouth was shut and I have never forgotten what she taught me in God’s Word that day!  Though my identity truly was in Christ, I was quenching the Spirit and the warning was for me!!  What a long way around for me to say THANK YOU Susan for bringing in the Hebrews passage that the Lord led you to!  As I look back over my life I cannot praise Him enough for His mercies to me all along the way!  🙂  

  6. OH! Ron’s baptism! I still remember your early stories of Ron and Debbie–and his asking you about what you were teaching Debbie, how different it was from what he’d heard all his life…that all she had to do is trust what Jesus did on the Cross, that she didn’t have to try to be good!
    And here he is–oh Dee. I’m so thankful you have shared his journey with us, I feel such a deep rejoicing within, because we have been able to hear of the transformation. 
    And seeing this picture–yes, his face, the way he is turning his face to the Lord, love–but I am also so touched by Debbie, there beside him….and the fellowship of the Body, believers around him. It made me think of 1 Corinthians 12:12-14 ” For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and all were made to drink of one Spirit. For the body does not consist of one member but of many.”

  7. What a wonderful, glorious, touching, sobering story about Ron … oh my! That he has found rest after all those years of torment … praise the Lord! May we all pause and examine ourselves to remember once again in our hearts that God is the only one to give us True Rest!

  8. Happy Sunday all!
    What stands out to you from above: My mind has been racing since last weeks study and I’ve been doing a little research about St. Augustine and I’m feeling refreshed and renewed. So for me it was the quote from St. Augustine that said ‘ You have made us for yourself, oh Lord, and our hearts are restless until they find you. I’m really not to big on theology, I know it’s important but I kinda stick to reading the bible and will pray for clarity and read from different translations until I feel I am grasping the meaning. I have three small children and don’t have a lot of time and really have enough character flaws that the fruits of the spirit are usually enough in terms of study. I have a lot of growing I need to do and don’t like to get side tracked on the ideas of man and religion. I want to be like Jesus. But I know that the Lord has used people to impact eachother and there have been great men and woman we can glen from. So I’m really considering picking up St. Augustine’s book City of God because I’m feeling so stirred by Psalms 48.

    1. Nicole, I know where you are coming from. There is a season for everything. When you have small children you have a lot to balance. I love how you admitted that you have enough character flaws to just focus on the fruits of spirit. You are headed in the right direction sister and I for one am praying for you!

  9. What stood out, photos, like music and art, speak to me. Is it me or does that water look cold? The full emersion baptisms that I have seen have always been very personal and joyous. His expression is wonderful, as is his openness to dropping on his knees in the woods and give thanks to God, there is so much beauty and intimacy in that. 

  10. 1. What stood out to you from the above and why?
    The St. Augustine quote. I just realize our pastor preached about this very thing yesterday. I love that He made us for Himself to enjoy and wish that I could remember that each minute of the day. It is true; how restless I feel most of the time. I have a tendency to self-loathe ?.  My sarcastic manner would be to say to myself ” yeah, He needed a laugh, so He made me!” To think He made me for Him….so special.

    1. Laura, you are too funny! I like to quote how some parts of the body are unseemly and need to be covered. To me that means that I should go around with a bag on my head!

  11. 2.  Listen to the following and share your notes or thoughts.
    Having just listened to Nick Needham speak on the City of God/Augustine, I am finding it hard to fully express how much this impacted me.  I WILL be scheduling another hour of my life this week to give this another listen and to take notes next time.  It is amazing how he was able to give a birds eye view to the history of the world through the overview of the Scriptures!  Seeing our lives in the context of eternity truly brings such a settling of heart to the day to day decisions and sometimes chaos and disappointments and heartaches.  This is a not to be missed teaching!  Augustine’s “Confessions” and “City of God” have long been on my “someday” list to read…..this special message moved someday to “now”!  Dee, this may be one of the most powerful messages you have brought to us!  Thank you SO much!

  12. 1. What stood out to you from the above and why?  Ron’s testimony and that he is a Vietnam vet.  I know the degree of distress of many Vietnam vets — and the contrast between his restlessness and new life in Jesus seems even more vivid with that image in mind.Also, now I am thinking that someday I might pull “The City of God” off my shelf and actually read it.  I wonder if there is a Cliff Notes or “for Dummies” version?

  13. 1. What stood out to you from the above and why? I know it’s Monday, but I’m answering Sunday’s question anyway.
    Ron’s whole testimony stands out. I feel such a connection with what he has gone through. I truly believe that truth is starting to fall from my head to my heart.
    I have been listening to Pilgrim’s Theology on audio book and I am on the last chapter.  So much is FINALLY coming alive that I cannot put it into words! Please pray that this isn’t a “seed on rocky ground”, but a true rooting of the Word and that the Lord will take me in new directions as I finally rest in Him.

    1. Dawn–praying for that rest, to be fully realized in Him. I remember you mentioning that book before, maybe a rec. from your counselor a while back? I just remember hearing great things about it after you mentioned it. I should add it to my list!

    2. oh Dawn.  I cannot think of a better prayer request than yours.  Right now I have prayed for you in this way….the the Word will take root like never before in your heart!  It truly sounds like the Lord is blessing you in the best possible ways – in Himself!  🙂  

    3. Dawn, So exciting.  Praying!

    1. Dee–I’m actually excited about it, I just haven’t had a minute to listen to the teaching yet! But hope to tonight 🙂

      1. Lizzy-I was able to listen Sunday morning and I took a lot of notes..but I need to listen again..It is worth another listen-really good!

    2. Not at all! I will have time on Wednesday to listen. I also want to read the books by St. Augustine.

    3. I am here, and enjoying reading everyone’s posts.  Just didn’t have anything worth contributing.

      1. Mary, you always have something to contribute here! I can relate..Sometimes I just like to read and most often I don’t have time to respond, but I am quickened by what our sisters say here all the time. God is at work.  :))

      2. Mary – just so you know:  I have SO appreciated each and every one of your posts thus far!  You have contributed MUCH here.  🙂  But this is a place where there is an incredibly gracious spirit coming from Dee that frees us all up to have somewhat of an ebb and flow to our participation.  I have always tried to remember that my daily “in my face” relationships, whether my largely unbelieving family, my church family and commitments there, my friendships, my work relationships….all take priority over even this precious opportune cyber gathering!  You are finding your own rhythm and it is good!  

    1. Dee, I listened a couple of days ago.  Even posted, but I must’ve forgot to fill in my name 😉   Anyhow, I got distracted because I went on a search for a printed copy so that I could read along — which I didn’t find, but I ended up reading a journal article by him WHILE I was listening.  I really appreciated the sermon when I was focusing, but this is not one to have in the background!!  To top it all off, I ran into some stuff that I’d been wondering if someone had written about — or if I should (Biblical perspectives of philosophy of science) but I had never searched.  The other articles I read were in the same journal.  So…I had a productive wild goose chase, but want to REALLY listen.  Might listen in the car because that’s when I focus best, but I may end up near Canada without a passport.  I have been known to miss exits and not realize it when I am listening to MUSIC 😉

  14. OH WOW. I’m only half-way through and have to finish more after work this evening, but now I am hooked! These are some of my thoughts so far, not exact notes, just my reflections on what jumped out most to me–

    Augustine says there are two kinds of humans—those in the City of God-symbolized in the Bible by Jerusalem, live according to God, predestined to reign eternally with God. And those in the “other” city— citizens of the world, man, the devil, symbolized in the Bible by Babylon. 

    **Our destiny is determined by our citizenship to one or other of these 2 cities. There is no third option, and no possibility of neutrality. 

    What is the core difference of the two communities? LOVE. The two communities love different things. “Two cities formed by two loves”.

    The earthly city has love of self, even to the point of despising God—glory in itself, glory from men. It lifts up its head in its own glory. Princes rule by love of power. Delights in its own strength. Their trust is in man. Characterized by pride. Make use of God to enjoy the world. 

    The city of God has at it’s core, love for God, even to the point of despising self. It seeks glory in, for,  from God. God is the Lifter of his head. They serve one another in love. Says to God, I will love you, God, my strength. They trust in God. Characterized by humility. Make use of the world, in order to enjoy more of God.

    The origin of the two cities began beyond earth, in the heavens. God created one society of angels, good. Then a division happened, and some rebelled. This division in the heavens reproduced itself on earth by Satan’s seduction of Eve and Adam—the Fall of Man. The spirit of Babylon took possession of the human heart. Man decided to try to take authority over his own life. He began to live by his own standard, rather than God’s. 
    How could, after the Fall, the City of God come to the earthly world? The City of God had its origin by a new, re-creative act of God, powered by divine grace, through rebirth, of the Holy Spirit. 

    In Scripture, Abel becomes the founding father of the City of God. Augustine makes note that Abel is the 2nd son, Cain is the first. Sinful birth always comes first, then the spiritual re-birth. 

  15. 3. Now, take another look at Psalm 48 and see if you see anything new or helpful for your life.
    I thought this this was a pretty tough lecture to follow. If I get the chance I am going to try to listen again. 
    There are two cities; the city of God and the city of man. You will be in one, but if you are in the city of man then you are following the devil. The devil roams the earth; it is his reign of sorts. I love the statement he makes about this. He says something like, if your standard is the city if man than you follow the devil….not sure of the direct quote. 
    When re-reading Psalm 48, I really understand the joy now of the city of God. 

  16. I plan to post my notes from Sunday-hopefully tomorrow..But I have to say I LOVED THIS. Understanding History helps us understand that the two Cities at war IS History past, present and future! We either belong to one or the other and the difference is what Lizzy posted and I loved this also: The godly city makes use of the world to enjoy God. The wicked makes use of God so they may enjoy the world.  What stood out to me also is what Lizzy posted: Two cities formed by two loves. I also love how he related the two cities to Cain and Able. Cain is of the city of the world, and Able of the City of God. 

    1. ditto to everything you have said here Rebecca!  Thinking of the two cities in terms of Cain and Abel and the pattern laid down for the rest of the Scriptures was truly powerful, wasn’t it?  A brand new idea to me!  🙂  One among several in this challenging, but tremendous teaching.  Talk about a “Worldview”!  Sooooo grateful Dee brought this teaching our way this week…..and I’m digging into “The City of God” with a new energy this week too!  This introductory teaching on Augustine really wooed me into it!  

    1. oh Dee….when I read your words that “I do feel that together on this blog we are helping one another enjoy Him more…”…..that just settled ever so gently down into the depths of my heart and I just felt such joy!  Long before I became an active participant on the blog I would read your words at the top of the page:  “Is it possible to experience God in a place like this?” and I found that question to be one that resounded again and again deep within my soul.  “Helping one another enjoy Him more” REALLY seems like a part of the answer to that question!  I am so grateful.  🙂  

  17. I may not get another chance at a take-away, nothing profound to share, but I really enjoyed this week and Needham’s lecture on Augustine. My simple thoughts from Psalm 48:
    The Lord deserves our praise–for His steadfast love, His righteous hand, He is great. 
    When He is the subject of our praise, we are filled with His joy (v. 1); our enemies fall (v.5), and we are eternally safe in Him (v.14). 
    It the Object of our affection that determines our strength. This strikes me this week, because, if we really believe what we are reading here–we truly have nothing to fear. EXCEPT when He is not the One on the throne of my heart, when I let lessor loves enthrone His place, then I fall. When I feel frustrated, fearful, irritated…it is always that I have allowed something else to rule my emotions. And the second part to this is that I have no strength in and of my self. My strength comes from Him being in His rightful place in my heart. It is ONLY because He fills the City, that they are not defeated by enemies (v.4) 
    I am continuing to think on Augustine’s two cities–every decision reflects homage to one or the other. Each of my thoughts, my responses, reveal which city has my heart. I’m so thankful that His grace continues to allow me to come back again and again after I have just been a traitor by my words minutes before. OH. But I long to stay, to dwell in the house of the Lord forever. “One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.” -psalm 27:4
    The key in this psalm seems to point to purposely keeping praise on my lips–seeking to shape my thoughts about even a difficult trial, to end in praise for His soverignty. And to think on His steadfast love (v.9), letting it crowd out fears and frustrations…trusting His way with my world

    1. Lizzy!   I so loved your take away from start to finish!  “…..trusting His way with my world”…..profound.  And going into my journal right now!  🙂    Each and every time someone quotes Psalm 27:4 my heart is quickened and does a happy dance…..it is assuredly on my “top 10” verses for life (no, I don’t actually have a “list”!)and is SUCH a thought shaper isn’t it???  Reading this this morning….after a day yesterday of falling on my face repeatedly in the mud and muck and mire of my own sin…..He is restoring my soul through your words sister.  Thank you.  His mercies are new every morning, Praise His Name!

      1. thank you Jackie–you always encourage my heart 🙂

    2. Lizzy,
      One of my favorite songs from Psalm 27. One thing have I desired of the Lord https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RkE-doVVYsI

  18. Another thing I thought was interesting, and I don’t know if I agree, was that everyone starts in the city of man first and then can end up in the city of God. That just came to me now. I am going to listen tonight sonce we have a long road trip that starts late tonight and goes through tomorrow. Maybe I can post more tomorrow?

    1. Laura –I’m curious as to why you maybe didn’t agree that we all start out in the city of man?  I was just thinking that by “city of man” Augustine was referring to the state of sin that we ALL are born into.  That just comes straight from Adam and the book of Genesis to the final judgement and Revelation.  Romans chapter 3 is as good source to see the big picture of sin and redemption….especially v. 10 and 23 make the part about the inescapability of sin (“original sin”)clear.  That’s why we all so need Jesus!  When John the Baptist came to prepare the way for Jesus his first words were “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand”.  When John was arrested and Jesus began his public ministry, Matthew 4:17 records it this way:  “From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ ”   I love that Jesus’ first recorded words of preaching echoed John the Baptist precisely!  The need for repentance was universal and crucial to salvation.  Out of God’s great heart of love and compassion, Christ’s first words to us:  Repent.  

      1. I guess I just needed to injest that thought…I wasn’t raised Catholic where you learn that we all have “original sin,” so I’m thinking that we were all “made in His image,” right? He wouldn’t have sin then, correct? Wouldn’t there be a potential time prior to actually having a chance to sin that we would be sin free (Cooper is a sweet boy! babies aren’t truly sinful to me; they sometimes get into things that we don’t want them to, but then that’s really just an inconvenience to me, or the adult in charge). I feel like because we are born into this sinful world then we have sin around us and it is a learned behavior (it’s NOT intrinsic). So we have a choice as we live and grow to either sin or not. Of course, unfortunately, we all choose sin (even when it looks good: eating, drinking, exercise, etc.) hmmmm….I gues babies can eat too much, so that would be gluttony). I will listen this morning and post again this afternoon. I need to think.

        1. Laura – I’m a little bit sorry that I used the word original sin, for I know that it can be a flashpoint.  My own views on original sin did not come from the Catholic church but rather from the Reformed Tradition’s teaching on the Scriptures with regard to sin.  It is a BIG topic and another crucial one at that!  🙂  There is a bit of a difference I think between the sin NATURE that we are born with and inherited from Adam…..and the “sins” that we commit day by day…..by choice and by neglect.  I am not truly qualified to tackle this complicated subject, but I’m going to post an article from the Gospel Coalition (Tim Keller is one of the founders) that may be helpful.  You can find it here:  https://blogs.thegospelcoalition.org/trevinwax/2009/09/29/why-should-i-believe-in-original-sin     It is not a difficult read and is respectful to questions very much like yours!  
          Laura, I simply LOVE the way you wrestle with hard things from the Word and push me not to just rest on the status quo but to seek and dig and to ask the Lord for humilty to be teachable.  You are one of the most teachable people I have ever met and I admire that so in you!  And by the way, you are SO RIGHT that we ARE all created in the image of God!  True, true, true!!  And he has made us all so differently too!  I am and always have been so very comfortable with mystery…..in fact I love it!  You, on the other hand, love to unravel mysteries and cannot rest until you do!  In that you remind me SO MUCH of my middle son who pushes me constantly to examine the things I say I believe!  For some bizarre reason I can rest very comfortably with the both the truth that we were created in the image of God and the truth that we are born with a sin nature.  And much like my son, you probably want to pull your hair out to even read that!!  I pray that you keep pushing into Him and holding up everything to His Word….bathed in prayer…..and as for Cooper…..having met him, even briefly, I surely saw the image of God in that child!  He is beautiful, beautiful.  I pray for him often.  🙂  Love you Laura.

  19. Sermon response and how it encouraged me:
    My future life with Him changes how I live my pilgrimage here in the City of man-for I am a citizen of heaven NOW yet I am a pilgrim here living in and weaving into the lives of those in the City of man.   I am encouraged to press on in this city of man living this life with a reference to the future with Him-walking in hope. Whenever I may start to despair the Holy Spirit quickens me-so it is Him quickening me reminding me that this isn’t my life but the future with Him. He is my life where it will be as the sermon said, Instead of victory-truth, instead of dignity-holiness, instead of peace-blessedness, instead of life-eternity. Rome (America and the world) promises the perishable, the City of God promises imperishable. Oh my, as I type this..I just felt an earthquake. I called my mom in Missouri and she felt it too. It was small and quick though. 🙂 

    1. Rebecca, we are in NWMO too and we felt the earthquake also. My husband who is in another town 42 miles from home felt it too. He texted me and we felt it at EXACTLY the same time. Weird! The door to the bedroom where I was shook for a few seconds and I thought I was having vertigo! LOL He said the epicenter was in Northern Oklahoma and it was 5.8 magnitude.

    2. Hey Rebecca! It actually was a 5.6; pretty big! I forget where do you live?

  20. 3. Now, take another look at Psalm 48 and see if you see anything new or helpful for your life.
    4. What is your take-a-way and why?
    I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Nick Needham. What great insights into the city of God and the city of man. Yes, Dee. Psalm 48 took on a clearer, better perspective after I listened to Needham. It is one psalm that used to be rote for me. With what is going on in the world, it is a temptation for me to either be fretful and start worrying or to be so “heavenly minded” I fail to see the good I can do at the moment. I can be of the city of God while living in the city of man.  “God makes me/her secure forever” as in vs. 8 (as a citizen of the holy God) while the “kings joined forces and advance together” as in verse 4 (in the city of man).
    For this God is our God for ever and ever;     he will be our guide even to the end. V.14
    As a true citizen of the city of God, I can be confident that in the city of man I am not alone. Through everything, He will be my guide EVEN to the end. (here and in my heavenly home)
    An afterthought: After I listened to Needham, I tried to look for the prayer that he quoted at the end. In the process, I looked at several links and in some, there were questions like “ is it wrong to pray to St. Augustine?” I don’t think that it ever entered his mind that he would one day be venerated and prayed to! Such is the cunningness of our Enemy. The city can easily/subtly becomes of man and not of God.   

    1. Bing, I so appreciate your “afterthought” and your warning to us to remember the wiles of our adversary.  he can even come disguised as an angel of light…..oh, how we need His Word, His discernment, and the precious company of His people to learn with!!  Such as we are so BLESSED to do together here!  Thanks Bing!

  21. At least ONE of my biggest take-aways from this week’s look again at Psalm 48 comes from the second half of the chapter.  I have been so struck by the thoughtfulness we are invited into!  The open invitational nature from our loving Father to come and see….in the company of fellow believers…..and praise and share with the next generation!  I am so reminded of the words of A.W. Tozer:  “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.”  From verses 9-14 we see His steadfast love (mercy), His Name, His praise, His righteousness, His judgements, His eternality, His faithfulness, and the impenetrable Fortress that He is to us, His children!  I stand amazed.  

  22. Okay, so I have listened to about a third of the lecture and just hit the part where Augustine suggests the city of God was “born” out of the city of man….however, John 1 says He was ALWAYS HERE. 
    “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men.”
    ‭‭John‬ ‭1:1-4‬ ‭ESV‬‬
    So if He was ALWAYS here then, in theory, isn’t His city here too?

    1. Augustine says we are not born with a spiritual side, this comes after the flesh is born into a natural state. 
      This Seems weird to me; if we are born in Hia image then aren’t we intrinsically spiritual?

      1. Laura- try reading Ephesians chapter 2…..especially the first several verses …..we are described as “dead” UNTIL Christ brings us to life!    I hope that doesn’t further confuse….

        1. Thanks for your help Jackie! I am going to go read the Tim Keller piece and then go to Ephesians. You are so kind to “entertain” me! Love you too!!
          I like the idea that Augustine poses about the first born (older) sons representing the city of man (Cain, Joseph’s brothers, and Saul) and the younger ones representing the “birth” of grace (Abel/Seth, Joseph, and David), who also end up being important figures of the city of God. I also like how he says Adam represents the first sin and the “second” Adam (Jesus) represents the mercy and grace given to those who are of the city of God. 
          Finally, he says that the two cities intermingle. Some people are not authentic in their faith; they go to church but hidel everything; no heart for God. It’s easier to see the sin of the world here on earth.

  23. I listened and got a lot from it. I don’t think that I have anything to add to what has already been said, but thank you for bringing this study to us. I had heard of St. Augustine before, but, sadly, until this week I didn’t have any idea about what an impact he made in Christian society. I have downloaded the Works of St. Augustine for $1.99 on Kindle (99cents for City Of God) and I look forward to reading more by him.

  24. I loved the teaching by Nick Needham on the City of God…So clear and so relevant! Thank you for I including this, Dee. I have so many take a ways from this week, but here are just a couple. 1) I should not be so fixated on the heavenly city that I am no good for the earthly city. 2) God will be my guide in all of life, until the end. Also, Dawn thanks for the kindle info. I think I am going to purchase them as well. This has wetter my appetite for more reading of the works of Augustine!