It's not that it's MEANT to be taken that way. It's what it is. It's "hey, this is what happened over the last few hundred years". If somebody doesn't take it as literal fact (you know...people like Holocaust deniers) then they are simply stupid. Sure, as a religion, everything in the bible is supposed to be "it happened". I for one support the idea of religious people taking their holy text literally. But do it all the way, don't cherry pick (please, come stone my heathen ass to death). All that aside, it doesn't matter HOW it's written. What matters is validity.
Yeah, and you probably see where I'm coming from with this. Yet to your mention of cherry picking, how many people were stone to death in the Bible, before the Ten Commandments came? In fact, before man fell, where in the book of Genesis was Adam's slave? Where did man rule over the woman before man fell? How many died before man fell? So if you ask me why I don't do all those things, it's because Jesus came to restore us to how God originally created us. There is no commandment of stoning heathens in the beginning.
I understand how the bible was compiled. I am saying that books were removed and added. Sure, god can add books. But a perfect, all-knowing being doesn't change his mind. So, what the hell is up with you believing a book that had things taken out of it, if the bible is the 100% truth and inspired word of god?
Adding doesn't mean altering. How many new facts can we find out about this universe, that would change the universe as a whole? God's love is much more vast than this universe. You can find out something new everyday for the rest of eternity, and that new fact doesn't change the meaning of God's love. The whole Bible has one central theme, and it's about Jesus.
I understand that those alone don't make it an allegory; however, if I told a completely objective person about those things and said "would you believe this book to be factual or allegorical?", they would most likely say allegorical, and I have no problem claiming that. Birds mimicking =/= snakes talking. That's like saying humans drive cars, so clearly it is believable that squirrels can as well. Genesis is written to be TAKEN as a historical account. Unfortunately, the SECOND it goes into the order of creation of the things on earth, it is DEMONSTRABLY FALSE. Science disagrees with the bible there. Sorry. Those are the facts, and facts help us differentiate truth from fairy tales. Sure, it not being true doesn't necessarily make the entire bible allegorical, but it does make it all a work of fiction. That is also fact.
It's too early to say science disagrees with Genesis. I've mentioned in this topic already that Genesis is talking on the very beginning of time. Science is based on our observation of today. Things that were once observable, are no longer observable. So if Genesis mentions many things that are no longer observable, at face value science will reject many things that are written in it. Look at Big Bang theory. We don't have physical evidence for cosmic inflation, but we believe it happened. There are a few things surrounding Big Bang theory, that we have no evidence for. We don't even know the universe began as a single point, that suddenly expanded. We only say it happened from our observation of the universe expanding. That because we see it expanding, all we got to do is run that tape in reverse, and essentially everything collapses into a single point of energy. Yet my question is, how do we know the tape rolls back that far?
This is the limit of science, and why it doesn't prove Genesis didn't happen. Not yet. (as I said I have falsefiability concerning the Genesis account)
Until such time that evidence exists for a god or the validity of the bible, why believe in either as truth? That is the height of ignorance.
That's an excellent question. It would be ignorance to just believe something without evidence. This have been pretty much most of the history of mankind when it comes to all the religions in the world. That's how superstition got started. However, I have reason to believe the Bible is true.
Firstly, you can see from the very beginning, the Bible has Jesus written all over it. All these different authors over many years, somehow maintained the central theme of Jesus redeeming mankind. Not just a man, but God Himself coming down to restore man. Also when you hear the Bible is inspired by God, it's actually the original language that is inspired by God. You can vividly see within the Hebrew and Greek words, the central theme of Christ. All of this was maintained by different men over a thousand+ year period of writings.
Secondly, Israel's existence. How they came back into their land after almost 2,000 years of exile. Say what you want about how they came back in, yet we know for certain God played a role in their preservation if only by the Bible itself. (American Christians helping Israel be established in 1948 or what have you) Not too mention when it comes to science and scientific study, Israel is one of the top nations in the world in that field. They rule in Nobel Peace prizes mostly because of their scientific achievement. I plan to go to Israel one day to do some scientific work there. Ultimately, when it comes to Israel, God said He would bring them back into the land, and they are back in the land. I'm sure many gods have promised their people things, and they have their writings just like the Bible is present. Yet those gods didn't follow through. The God of the Bible has followed through on His promise, or at least what is written happened just as it said.
Finally, we know Jesus existed. We know He preached a message. I haven't done research on this subject, but the difficulty of Jesus message continuing (considering He was no king or prophet, no one special in the eyes the world) on after His death, was extremely high. That if Jesus wasn't who He said He was, there's no way in the world His message would have spread pass Jerusalem much less foreign countries. Some would say once Constatine made Christianity an official religion, Christianity was bound to spread, ie. by force. Yet Christianity was spreading pretty good before that time. Judaism didn't spread, yet Christianity did? (Prior to Constatine) That is an evidence within itself that Jesus is who He is. I plan to do a study concerning the difficulty of the spread of Christianity, and how the message wouldn't have made it out of Jerusalem for no other reason than it being true.