This attempt to marginalize those who take both the Bible and
"modern" science seriously has several flaws in it.
"It is a fact that before the modern era nobody in the history of
the church ever questioned the chronology of the Bible". There does not
seem to have been much questioning of geocentrism, either, until contrary
evidence was discovered. This is akin to claiming that scientists before
Darwin were "Bible-believing creationists". "Modern" also needs clearly
defined. Many Christians accepted a great age for the earth before 1859.
The fact that unbelievers readily accept a given interpretation is
also poor supporting evidence. Interpretations of the Bible that make it
appear wrong are generally popular with hostile critics.
"A small historical backwater" is inaccurate in two ways. To the
extent that John Paul II sets Catholic doctrine, over 1 billion Catholics
fall in this catergory, so "small" is dubious. Secondly, "historical
backwater" is an odd term for someone trying to incorporate the latest
discoveries into his views. To continue using arguements that were refuted
by the 1860's (e.g., much flood geology) seems like more of a historical