Thursday, September 20, 2007

Georges Lemaître, a modernist?

From Priest of the Cosmos, a review of The Day Without Yesterday: Lemaître, Einstein, and the Birth of Modern Cosmology by John Farrell:

Farrell quotes from a telling 1933 interview of Lemaître on this topic:

The writers of the Bible were illuminated more or less—some more than others—on the question of salvation. On other questions they were as wise or as ignorant as their generation. Hence it is utterly unimportant that errors of historic or scientific fact should be found in the Bible, especially if errors relate to events that were not directly observed by those who wrote about them.

“The idea,” he concluded, “that because they were right in their doctrine of immortality and salvation they must also be right on all other subjects is simply the fallacy of people who have an incomplete understanding of why the Bible was given to us at all.”

So Lemaître maintained that God preserved those truths in Scripture related to salvation. But Scripture had nothing to say on specific scientific questions, and might even be full of scientific errors.

What Catholics looking for scientist-heroes don't know about them...

Georges-Henri Lemaitre Biography - Father of the Big Bang Theory
'A Day Without Yesterday': Georges Lemaitre & the Big Bang

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