Chapter

Creation from Nothing

Carol Harrison

in Rethinking Augustine's Early Theology

Published in print January 2006 | ISBN: 9780199281664
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603402 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199281661.003.0004
 Creation from Nothing

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This chapter examines one of the central features of Augustine’s early works which sets them apart from philosophical reflection, and provides the foundation for his early formulation of this ‘mature’ grasp of the faith: the idea of ‘creation from nothing’ — creatio ex nihilo. It demonstrates that what has been described as Augustine’s early ‘Christian philosophy’ was never less than fully integrated into his faith in a Trinitarian God, who forms human beings from nothing, reforms them through the incarnation, and inspires in them love and delight through the Holy Spirit. It argues that he never shared the classical ideal of human autonomy and self-determination to attain perfection, but that he was always acutely conscious of human beings’ created dependence upon God’s grace.

Keywords: creation; evil; good; form; ontological divide; will; grace; Fall; Trinity

Chapter.  20960 words. 

Subjects: Early Christianity

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