So this is probably a question that all of you have either asked yourselves or been asked by others. I've had conversations multiple times about this subject since the first time that I came online. 

 

I know of three versions of how Genesis can fit with evolution. GAP, Day-age, and allegorical. 

 

GAP to me is a joke. It proposes that between the versus in genesis ( between 1:19 and 1:20 if I remember correctly) the bible leaves out millions ( or billions) of years. Besides the fact that this makes god out to be a deceiver, it also still doesn't explain why the rest of creation is out of order. Like why the earth and plants are created before the sun.

 

Day-age makes an attempt to explain things by turning day into some indistinguishable period of time. Mainly by using versus like 2 Peter 3:8. 

 

Again we encounter the same problem as the first though. The arrangement of creation is out of order.

 

The last attempt is by saying that Genesis is allegorical. This is probably the best attempt at making things fit. Mainly that of making it so that it doesn't matter what order the Genesis account is in because that is not the point of the verse. They aren't suppose to be taken literally. 

 

One problem with this, and this includes the above versions as well. On what basis are we determining that Genesis isn't meant to be taken literally. Why should we drop the one interpretation for the others?

 

The main answer that I've gotten for this is that if we want science to fit with Genesis then we need to change Genesis in order to make it fit with our understanding of science. An example of this can be found here.

 

So this leads me to ask. Should the bible determine reality or should reality determine the bible? Because if Genesis is taken as non-literal so that we can fit it with science, then does that not mean that we create a precedence when it comes to how we look at the world? Wouldn't that mean that when science determines whether an event/object is good or bad for us then the bible takes a back seat? And if the bible takes a back seat, wouldn't that undermine the idea that it is the inspired word of god? I say it does.

 

Between the moderate Christians and the fundamentalist I always go with the moderates. I would rather have people who are pro rather then anti science. Still, on this subject I have come to realize that I cannot agree with moderates. Not with what has been presented. I can no longer tell a fundie directly that I see no conflict with science and the bible. 

 

What are your thoughts. Do you think that these two can reach some reasonable ( if not god written) consensus on the matter? I would be interested in hearing what you have to say.

 

As a side note, I really enjoy Robert Ingersoll's Some Mistakes of Moses.

 

Great read if you find the time.

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Replies to This Discussion

I don't know, Maruli; tell us about it.

 

oSorry, that my analogy was not clear.   To me, there is no real question of co-existing, when things are completely distinct, because they have nothing in common.    Grimm's fairy tales are fiction for immature brains of children, the telephone directory contains factual information.   Genesis is a fairy tale for delusional brains of christians, (a book about) evlution contains factual information.

Maruli,

I almost replied that Grimm and the phone book can co-exist as doorstops.

I also sometimes use heavy books to hold glued surfaces together until the glue sets. Does that use qualify as co-existence?

 

 

Thanks for giving me a new idea, what the bible could be used for:  As a door stop.   Up to now, I considered the bible only suitable as toilet paper.
... or as a source of horror stories, once Stephen King grows too tame for you.
Grimm's fairy tales exist as fairy tales with no claim to authority, only fanciful mythology passed down through the generations.  A telephone book contains only information, no dogma, litany, commandments, or claims to supernatural authorship.
From the baseline of atheistic thinking, Grimm's fairy tales and bible's fairy tales are exactly the same, fiction for insufficiently functioning brains.   Why would I be bothered about alleged differences, that only exist in the brains, that are afflicted with belief?   And I compared the facts in the telephone book of my analogy with the facts of evolution!

Maruli, you're saying much the same thing I said on this thread a bunch of times, so I eventually mostly dropped out -- Genesis is clearly a creation myth, just like the myths of every other early group of people. An attempt of pre-scientific people to explain the world around them. In THEIR case, it was not a case of insufficiently functioning brains, just their lack of basic scientific knowledge. The fact that people NOWADAYS believe it literally is ALSO a lack of basic scientific knowledge coupled with an emotional refusal to face facts, which were not available to the early people. I actually DON'T think they lack brains; what they lack is the ability to rise above their emotions and look at real evidence. Which can be traced to their refusal to learn anything about the nature of science.

But I really like your Grimm's/telephone book analogy, and you do put in a nutshell why this is a sort of pointless argument!

I consider any discussion about how serious the bible could be taken from the perspective of an atheist as obsolete and a waste of time.   I did not expect, that my Grimm's/telephone book analogy needed any explanation.
Slow down, Joan; telephone books contain advertising.
You wrote, "I've had conversations multiple times about this subject since the first time that I came online."  Why?  What is the point?  With all the affirmation of violence, the outrageous claims that made sense to Bronze Age desert tribes, why bother even asking your question?  If you or anybody wants to read the bible and believe the words, values and principles, go right ahead.  If someone knocks on my door to tell me the "Good News" I experience intrusion and insult and tell them so.  If someone goes to foreign countries to spread their propaganda, I think, "What hubris!"  If someone sends me those dreadful tear-jerker stories that obviously exist as fabrications of someone's over-active imagination, I block the sender.  For those who can affirm the Apostle's Creed, I realize there are 6,969,677,151 human beings on this planet and I don't have to spend time with those who do so.

6,971,020,942 human beings as of Oct 27, 2011

USA Census Bureau anticipates the world population will reach 7,000,000,000 this month!  Just think how many people with whom I can discuss living without a deity!

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