LISTEN: Spirituality as Quest, Pt. 19 — Augustine’s “Confessions”; Reading a Story, Pt. 23 — Types of Narrators (Literature & Spirituality #23 with Daniel Whyte III)


Daniel Whyte III
Daniel Whyte III

Our passage from the Word of God today is Acts 8:26-28 which reads: “And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert. And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship, was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet.”

Our quote today is from an unknown source. It reads: “Reading the Scriptures is an uplifting experience.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts: “Literature and Spirituality” by Yaw Adu-Gyamfi and Mark Ray Schmidt, and “Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing” by X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia.

Our first topic for today is “Spirituality as Quest, Part 19” from the book, “Literature and Spirituality” by Yaw Adu-Gyamfi and Mark Ray Schmidt.

Today, we will begin reading a selection from Augustine’s “Confessions.”

This selection is from Book I – Childhood / Chapter I – God and the Soul “Great art thou, O Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is thy power, and infinite is thy wisdom.” And man desires to praise thee, for he is a part of thy creation; he bears his mortality about with him and carries the evidence of his sin and the proof that thou dost resist the proud. Still he desires to praise thee, this man who is only a small part of thy creation. Thou hast prompted him, that he should delight to praise thee, for thou hast made us for thyself and restless is our heart until it comes to rest in thee. Grant me, O Lord, to know and understand whether first to invoke thee or to praise thee; whether first to know thee or call upon thee. But who can invoke thee, knowing thee not? For he who knows thee not may invoke thee as another than thou art. It may be that we should invoke thee in order that we may come to know thee. But “how shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? Or how shall they believe without a preacher?” Now, “they shall praise the Lord who seek him,” for “those who seek shall find him,” and, finding him, shall praise him. I will seek thee, O Lord, and call upon thee. I call upon thee, O Lord, in my faith which thou hast given me, which thou hast inspired in me through the humanity of thy Son, and through the ministry of thy preacher.

Our second topic for today is “Reading a Story, Part 23” from the book, “Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and Writing” by X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia.

Today, we’re taking a look at Types of Narrators.

Theoretically, a great many points of view are possible. A narrator’s knowledge might vary in gradations from total omniscience to almost total ignorance. But in reading fiction, again and again we encounter familiar and recognizable points of view. I will give a list of them admittedly just a rough abstraction – that may provide a few terms with which to dicuss the stories that you read and to describe their points of view:

Participant Narrator – Writes in the first person (“I”) / Can be either a major or minor character

Nonparticipant Narrator – Writes in the third person (“she,” “he”) / Can possess different levels of knowledge about characters including all-knowing or omniscient (sees into any or all of the characters); limited omniscience (sees into one character); and objective (does not see into any characters, reports events from outside)


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.