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237

The Enchiridion.

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Argument.

Laurentius having asked Augustin to furnish him with a handbook of Christian doctrine, containing in brief compass answers to several questions which he had proposed, Augustin shows him that these questions can be fully answered by any one who knows the proper objects of faith, hope, and love. He then proceeds, in the first part of the work (Chap. ix.—cxiii.), to expound the objects of faith, taking as his text the Apostles’ Creed; and in the course of this exposition, besides refuting divers heresies, he throws out many observations on the conduct of life. The second part of the work (Chap. cxiv.—cxvi.) treats of the objects of hope, and consists of a very brief exposition of the several petitions in the Lord’s Prayer. The third and concluding part (Chap. cxvii.-cxxii.) treats of the objects of love, showing the pre-eminence of this grace in the gospel system, that it is the end of the commandment and the fulfilling of the law, and that God himself is love.

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