Augustine of Hippo Quotes

Aurelius Augustinus Hipponensis, in English Augustine of Hippo, also known as St. Augustine, St. Austin, was bishop of Hippo Regius (present-day Annaba, Algeria). He was a Latin philosopher and theologian from the Africa Province of the Roman Empire and is generally considered as one of the greatest Christian thinkers of all times. His writings were very influential in the development of Western Christianity. According to his contemporary Jerome, Augustine “established anew the ancient Faith.” In his early years he was heavily influenced by Manichaeism and afterward by the Neo-Platonism of Plotinus. After his conversion to Christianity and his baptism in 387, Augustine developed his own approach to philosophy and theology, accommodating a variety of methods and different perspectives. He believed that the grace of Christ was indispensable to human freedom, and he framed the concepts of original sin and just war. When the Western Roman Empire was starting to disintegrate, Augustine developed the concept of the Catholic Church as a spiritual City of God (in a book of the same name), distinct from the material Earthly City. His thoughts profoundly influenced the medieval worldview. Augustine’s City of God was closely identified with the Church, the community that worshiped the Trinity. In the Catholic Church and the Anglican Communion, he is a saint and pre-eminent Doctor of the Church. Many Protestants, especially Calvinists, consider him to be one of the theological fathers of the Protestant Reformation due to his teaching on salvation and divine grace. In the Eastern Orthodox Church he is also considered a saint. He carries the additional title of Blessed. Among the Orthodox, he is called “Blessed Augustine” or “St. Augustine the Blessed”.


“Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.”  ~ Augustine


“To fall in love with God is the greatest romance; to seek him the greatest adventure; to find him, the greatest human achievement.” ~ Augustine


“Right is right even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong even if everyone is doing it.”  ~ Augustine


“Hope has two beautiful daughters; their names are Anger and Courage. Anger at the way things are, and Courage to see that they do not remain as they are.”  ~ Augustine


“People travel to wonder 
at the height of the mountains, 
at the huge waves of the seas,
at the long course of the rivers,
at the vast compass of the ocean,
at the circular motion of the stars,
and yet they pass by themselves 
without wondering. ”  ~ Augustine


“If you believe what you like in the Gospel, and reject what you don’t like, it is not the Gospel you believe, but yourself.”  ~ Augustine


“In order to discover the character of people we have only to observe what they love.”  ~ Augustine


“Faith is to believe what you do not yet see; the reward for this faith is to see what you believe.”  ~ Augustine


“The truth is like a lion; you don’t have to defend it. Let it loose; it will defend itself.”  ~ Augustine


“In my deepest wound I saw Your glory, and it dazzled me.”  ~ Augustine


“Christ is not valued at all, unless he is valued above all.”  ~ Augustine


“Oh, God, to know you is life. To serve You is freedom. To praise you is the soul’s joy and delight. Guard me with the power of Your grace here and in all places. Now and at all times, forever. Amen.”  ~ Augustine


“In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.”  ~ Augustine


“I held my heart back from positively accepting anything, since I was afraid of another fall, and in this condition of suspense I was being all the more killed.”  ~ Augustine


“There can only be two basic loves… the love of God unto the forgetfulness of self, or the love of self unto the forgetfulness and denial of God.”  ~ Augustine


“A Christian should be an Alleluia from head to foot”  ~ Augustine


“You called and shouted and burst my deafness. You flashed, shone, and scattered my blindness. You breathed odors, and I drew in breath and panted for You. I tasted, and I hunger and thirst. You touched me, and I burned for Your peace.”  ~ Augustine


“No one knows what he himself is made of, except his own spirit within him, yet there is still some part of him which remains hidden even from his own spirit; but you, Lord, know everything about a human being because you have made him…Let me, then, confess what I know about myself, and confess too what I do not know, because what I know of myself I know only because you shed light on me, and what I do not know I shall remain ignorant about until my darkness becomes like bright noon before your face.”  ~ Augustine


“The Holy Scriptures are our letters from home.”  ~ Augustine


“Does God proclaim Himself in the wonders of creation? No. All things proclaim Him, all things speak. Their beauty is the voice by which they announce God, by which they sing, “It is you who made me beautiful, not me myself but you.”  ~ Augustine


“He who denies the existence of God, has some reason for wishing that God did not exist.”  ~ Augustine


“We made bad use of immortality, and so ended up dying; Christ made good use of mortality, so that we might end up living.”  ~ Augustine


“What are kingdoms without justice? They’re just gangs of bandits.”  ~ Augustine


“Since God is the highest good, he would not allow any evil to exist in his works unless his omnipotence and goodness were such as to bring good even out of evil.”  ~ Augustine


“There are wolves within, and there are sheep without.” ~ Augustine


“Charity is no substitute for justice withheld.”  ~ Augustine

“A thing is not necessarily false because it is badly expressed, nor true because it is expressed magnificently.”  ~ Augustine


“Thus, a good man, though a slave, is free; but a wicked man, though a king, is a slave. For he serves, not one man alone, but what is worse, as many masters as he has vices.”  ~ Augustine


“Lord Jesus, don’t let me lie when I say that I love you…and protect me, for today I could betray you.”  ~ Augustine


“Trust the past to God’s mercy, the present to God’s love, and the future to God’s providence.”  ~ Augustine


“A sense of Deity is inscribed on every heart. Nay, even idolatry is ample evidence of this fact.” ~ Augustine


“I inquired what wickedness is, and I didn’t find a substance, but a perversity of will twisted away from the highest substance – You oh God – towards inferior things, rejecting its own inner life and swelling with external matter.”  ~ Augustine


“Moral character is assessed not by what a man knows but by what he loves”  ~ Augustine


“So anyone who thinks that he has understood the divine scriptures or any part of them, but cannot by his understanding build up this double love of God and neighbor, has not yet succeeded in understanding them.”  ~ Augustine


“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page.”  ~ Augustine


“Love and say it with your life.”  ~ Augustine


“He who falls, falls by his own will; and he who stands, stands by God’s will.”  ~ Augustine


“God had one son on earth without sin, but never one without suffering.”  ~ Augustine


“But my sin was this, that I looked for pleasure, beauty, and truth not in [God] but in myself and His other creatures”  ~ Augustine


“As flattering friends mislead, quarreling foes can often correct”  ~ Augustine


“Sing with your voices, your hearts, your lips and your lives.”  ~ Augustine


“No one should be ashamed to admit that they do not know what they do not know, in case while feigning knowledge, they come to deserve to never know.”  ~ Augustine