Augustine and Worldly Scientists
22 July, 2019
From the following source, the wisdom of Augustine is cited here regarding the origin of the world and its age.
(Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, “The Works of Augustine,” vol. 3, chap. 9, “Enchiridion,” p. 239):
When, then, the question is asked what we are to believe in matters of religion, it is not necessary to probe into the nature of things, after the manner of those whom the Greeks call physici; nor need we be alarmed we be in alarm lest the Christian should be ignorant of the force and the number of the elements of nature, the motion, and order, and eclipses of the heavenly bodies; the form of the heavens, the species and nature of animals, plants, stones, springs, rivers, and mountains; about chronology and distances; the signs of impending storms, and the myriad other things which these “physicists” have come to understand, or think they have. For even these men, gifted with such superior insight, with their ardor in study and their abundant leisure, exploring some of these matters by human conjecture and others through historical inquiry, have not yet learned everything there is to know. For that matter, many of the things they are so proud to have discovered are more often matters of opinion than of verified knowledge.
For the Christian, it is enough to believe that the cause of all created things, whether in heaven or on earth, whether visible or invisible, is nothing other than the goodness of the Creator, who is the one and the true God. Further, the Christian believes that nothing exists save God himself and what comes from him; and he believes that God is triune, i.e., the Father, and the Son begotten of the Father, and the Holy Spirit proceeding from the same Father, but one and the same Spirit of the Father and the Son.