In today’s mail came J. Budziszewski’s new book, The Line Through the Heart: Natural Law as Fact, Theory, and Sign of Contradiction. I put it aside as interesting for future reading, but perhaps far afield for this blog. Then, tonight, while waiting for my wife to finish up on the computer, I opened to a random page and found the author defending the Fathers against charges of intolerance. “Nor do the patristic writers argue merely that God detests the persecution of Christians; they say that persecution as such is repugnant to faith and to the will of God. This argument is elaborated by diverse early Christian figures, just the sort of thinkers whom liberals assume to have been impossible before liberalism.” Then follows the abundant evidence, from Lactantius, Hilary, Isidore of Pelusium, Gregory Nazianzen, John Chrysostom, Athanasius, and Augustine. The quotes are generous. The argument covers many pages. As I glance through the index, I see many more familiar names from antiquity. Looks like I’ll be reading this sooner rather than later.
I’m a longtime fan of Budziszewski. I’ve used his Ask Me Anything: Provocative Answers for College Students and How to Stay Christian in College with my kids.