On Christian Doctrine Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Augustine use to illustrate a thing to be used?

2. How are things separated by Augustine?

3. What is the primary tool for interpretation for the critics that Augustine primarily focuses on in the Preface?

4. What is the nature of the second important distinction Augustine identifies in Book One?

5. How does Augustine characterize things in Book One?

Short Essay Questions

1. What term does Augustine apply to the subjects he recommends for study to learn Scriptural interpretation and why does he use this term?

2. Why does Augustine begin his differentiation of the items that students must learn in the fashion which he does?

3. What does Augustine recommend to the pastor who cannot acquire the skill of rhetoric?

4. What is the source if an individual knows more than they actually know and how does that impact Augustine's effort?

5. What does Augustine identify as an important consideration when determining how many ideas words or phrases from Scripture contain?

6. What is the illustration Augustine uses to show the difference between things "enjoyed" and things "used"?

7. What tool does Augustine write that a pastor can use to help make Scripture understandable?

8. What categories does Augustine use to define spheres of natural knowledge?

9. What does Augustine focus on in Book Four?

10. What does Augustine identify as a trope and how does it affect interpretation of Scripture?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Augustine wrote after the reign of Constantine who made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire. How do you think the role of Christianity in the administration of the Roman Empire affected theological rivalries among Christian leaders? Is it possible that Augustine was motivated by such rivalries to write "On Christian Doctrine"? Why or why not? If a rivalry similar to that between Augustine and the Donatists (those who believed interpretation came from "special gifts") was active today, which side do you believe modern political, religious, and secular leaders would choose and why?

Essay Topic 2

Augustine begins training his students to interpret scripture with an examination of "things." He differentiates "things" that are to be used from things that are to be enjoyed. Use an example that Augustine used in "On Christian Doctrine" to make a Venn diagram comparing things that are used with things enjoyed. Write an essay on your diagram and identify the standard that Augustine uses to determine how things are to be used and enjoyed properly. Conclude the essay with the steps you would have to take to use and enjoy things based on Augustine's standards.

Essay Topic 3

Augustine devotes the preface to answering criticism he expects to receive from a sect known as the Donatists. Compare Augustine's position to what you know of the Donatists from the preface (those who believe that "special gifts" were necessary to interpret Scripture). What are the benefits of the two beliefs? What are the disadvantages of each? Which system of interpretation do you consider more beneficial to the general public and particularly to the growth and development of the Christian Church. Explain your answer.

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