The Harmony of the Gospels.
The treatise opens with a short statement on the subject of the authority of the evangelists, their number, their order, and the different plans of their narratives. Augustin then prepares for the discussion of the questions relating to their harmony, by joining issue in this book with those who raise a difficulty in the circumstance that Christ has left no writing of His own, or who falsely allege that certain books were composed by Him on the arts of magic. He also meets the objections of those who, in opposition to the evangelical teaching, assert that the disciples of Christ at once ascribed more to their Master than He really was, when they affirmed that He was God, and inculcated what they had not been instructed in by Him, when they interdicted the worship of the gods. Against these antagonists he vindicates the teaching of the apostles, by appealing to the utterances of the prophets, and by showing that the God of Israel was to be the sole object of worship, who also, although He was the only Deity to whom acceptance was denied in former times by the Romans, and that for the very reason that He prohibited them from worshipping other gods along with Himself, has now in the end made the empire of Rome subject to His name, and among all nations has broken their idols in pieces through the preaching of the gospel, as He had promised by His prophets that the event should be.
S. AURELII AUGUSTINI HIPPONENSIS EPISCOPI De Consensu EVANGELISTARUM LIBRI QUATUOR .
1041 Dicto breviter de Evangelistarum auctoritate, numero, ordine ac varia scribendi ratione, Augustinus, priusquam de eorumdem consensu agat, illis hoc libro occurrit qui vel moventur cur Christus ipse nihil scripserit, vel fingunt scriptos ab ipso fuisse libros de magicis; quique adversus evangelicam doctrinam jactitant Christi discipulos non tantum magistro suo amplius tribuisse quam re vera erat, dicendo illum Deum; sed etiam deorum cultum prohibendo, non hoc docuisse quod ab ipso didicissent. Contra quos doctrinam Apostolorum ex Prophetarum eloquiis vindicat, ostendens Deum Israel solum colendum esse, qui solus a Romanis quod deos alios coli secum vetaret, ante non receptus, jam demum Romanum imperium suo nomini subjugavit, atque apud omnes gentes, uti per suos Prophetas futurum promiserat, idola comminuit per Evangelii praedicationem.