THIS is an excerpt from The Literal Meaning of Genesis by Augustine of Hippo (354 AD to 430 AD). According to Wikipedia:
[Augustine] is one of the most important figures in the development of Western Christianity. … He framed the concepts of original sin and just war.
In [the] Roman Catholic Church, the Anglican Communion, and the Lutheran Church he is a saint and pre-eminent Doctor of the Church, and the patron of the Augustinian religious order; his memorial is celebrated 28 August. Many Protestants, especially Calvinists, consider him to be one of the theological fathers of Reformation teaching on salvation and divine grace.
Augustine is obviously important to a number of denominations, and what we’re going to quote here is relevant to the creationism-evolution controversy. It’s included in our List-O-Links, but we’re posting it here because it deserves more prominence.
The text comes from: AUGUSTINE’S COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLICAL BOOK OF GENESIS. To find our excerpt at that link, search on “Chapter 19.” Just before that chapter begins, Augustine says something that isn’t often quoted in creationism debates, but it should be. It’s this, with bold supplied by us:
In matters that are obscure and far beyond our vision, even in such as we may find treated in Holy Scripture, different Interpretations are sometimes possible without prejudice to the faith we have received. In such a case, we should not rush in headlong and so firmly take our stand on one side that, if further progress in the search of truth justly undermines this position, we too fall with it. That would be to battle not for the teaching of Holy Scripture but for our own, wishing its teaching to conform to ours, whereas we ought to wish ours to conform to that of Sacred Scripture.
Now for the part that is frequently quoted in creationism debates. To make this easier to read, we’re taking the liberty of breaking the text into paragraphs. Everything that follows is by Augustine; no Curmudgeonly commentary is required.
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