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Allegorical Interpretation of Genesis

Breece6This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. posted this thread...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 7:07 am

So, me and Half.note have had some incredibly lengthy debates about this.  
 
Let me catch you up:
 
I said, "blah blah blah, an allegorical interpretation fits in with science and common sense blah blah blah, it makes sense that God wouldn't go up to a bunch of people 6000 years ago and started explaining genetics and The Big Bang, blah blah blah, you get the point."
 
to which the majority of Half.note's answers were,
 
"blah blah blah, if it's an allegory why are plants made before the sun, blah blah blah, why does it never say directly that it's not literal, blah blah blah you get the point"
 
So now, after further thought, I have some responses to her, and I thought I'd make a new thread so you guys can jump in whenever you feel like too :D
 
Anyways, on to business:
 
The "Plants made before sun" problem:
 
If we were seeing this picture made from God's point of view, I would agree this presents a problem.  BUT, it does not say "In the beginning I made the Heavens and Earth", it says GOD.  
 
We are seeing this picture unveiled from the perspective of the author of Genesis to whom this vision was revealed to, (probably Moses)
 
If we were on Earth in it's primordial stages, the whole thing would have literally been a huge mass of rock covered in a densely clouded atmosphere.  
 
Even though light as a concept has already been created, and some of it pours through the clouds enough for ancient, ANCIENT plant life to form, we have not yet seen the sun or moon or stars yet because of the dense, transluscent atmostphere.  
 
So we would see the sun appearing after the first plants appear, from an EARTHLY perspective.  
 
If we think of this from the perspective of someone standing on Earth being given this vision, and not from God's perspective, all the verses explaining the creation fit into an allegory quite nicely actually :P
 
In regards to the "It doesn't say it's not literal"
 
That's 'cause it's not, it's literally what happened, it's just been put into simpler terms for it to apply to the people of that time period as well as today.
 
As for the 6 "days", what is a day?  A day is one full rotation of the Earth, if Genesis were literal, and the sun had not been created yet, Earth would not spin in the same manner it did now.  It would take a different amount of time, quite possibly longer.  
 
If that's not enough, there's always the ever popular "a day to God is like a thousand years" argument.  
 
Either way, there's lots to suggest that Genesis would fit nicely as an allegory.  
 
Thank you for reading :) 
 
 

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RarelyJadedThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 9:52 am

Your last three paragraphs I could agree with, even though I'm a literal creationist..... The rest of it, no. Just no. But more on that latah:P.

I think you probably knew I'd have to join in on this. There aren't enough literal creationists out there :)

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Destinee replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 11:00 am

Do you mean "green plants"? Cuz those require sunlight. 

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Breece6This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 11:24 am

Destinee:
 
The light would exist, but from an Earthly perspective we would not be able to see the sun in those primordial times, merely the light emanating through the clouds.  
 
So yes, green plants, but no visible sun from the earthly perspective of someone being given the vision.

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Breece6This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 11:25 am

RarelyJaded:
 
I look forward to it :P

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packerbacker12This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 11:44 am

of course here comes Kevin the illiterate(sp).i should change my name to that:)
I’ll only respond to what i know so please don't accuse me of nitpicking:)
why would Moses have to say in the beginning I created the heavens and the earth. then whoever is reading it would think that in the beginning Moses created the heavens and the earth. G-d was speaking to Moses so Moses would've been writing down what was said to him. so if G-d says in the beginning i created the heavens and the earth then Moses would write in the beginning G-d created the heavens and the earth. i would break down the Hebrew but it would take far to long:)
i don't know enough about the sun and plant thing so I’ll leave that alone.
a Hebrew day is from sundown to sundown. but I’m not understanding how it would be different than now, please explain further.
now the thousand years is like a day and a day is like a thousand years. is just another way of saying that G-d doesn't live in time, he is in a timeless state.
Shalom Aleichem!
 
p.s. i used spell check this time:P


 
 
 
 
 
 

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packerbacker12This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 11:57 am

^ the thousand years like a day, i was trying to say that G-d does not live in time:)

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RarelyJadedThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 2:09 pm

^ oops, there's the proof reading :P

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Artgirl1999This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 14, 2013 at 10:01 pm

But Breece, when God (I know you probably don't believe He wrote it, but just go with me here) wrote the Bible, He didn't just write it for the people living at that time. He wrote it for everyone who would ever live. So why would He 'dumb it down' for the people then if He knew that at some point we could understand ( the science) as well as we do now?

Let me provide an example of what I mean by this. You are writing a book for a specific group of future middle-schoolers. You know it's going to be incredibly important to them, because it contains important information they will need to live their lives properly.

So you finish the book. It's really good and in fact is so important you think you should give it to the kids now. One problem- the kids are kindergartners. They won't fully understand the book that will change their lives.

Do you give it to them?

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Breece6This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 6:52 am

Packerbacker:
 
You completely misunderstood what I was saying, no offense :)
 
You're actually agreeing with me, I said that the Bible DOESN'T say that "I Created the Heavens and the Earth" because the story is not being told from God's perspective, but from an EARTHLY (Moses's) perspective, which explains the point about the sun and plants.
 
A day would be different if the interpretation was literal because there would BE NO SUNDOWN or Sun up for that matter.  Because the sun was created on the Third Day I believe. 
 
And lastly, how do you know that your interpretation of that verse is correct?  It seems to me like it is saying a day to God is like a thousand years.  Where do you get the idea that it means timelessness?  
 
You seem to be making up your own interpretations :P
 
Artgirl:
 
The problem with your analogy is that the kids God were giving the Bible wouldn't be in Middle School by the time they would be capable of understanding it.
 
They would be dead.  For thousands and thousands of years in fact, by the time we got around to understanding it.  In fact we can't say we completely understand it now because science is continually progressing.  
 
God told the story of Creation in a manner that applies to all time periods.  It is equally true no matter what time period you live in, it's just that as science progresses we get a better understanding of it. 

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Artgirl1999This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 8:26 am

Breece: Exactly. Your last paragraph is what I was trying to point out. Moses wrote what he saw, which is what God ( the author of the Bible) told/showed him.
God made sure it was written so that all generations could understand it, to some extent.

By the way, did you read Packer's thread 'My God Ain't Stupid?'

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packerbacker12This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 10:57 am

breece6: yes my interprataion was wrong, but the translation would be the next few verses. the hebrew is Yahweh:)
 
2Pe 3:8
 
But, beloved ones, let not this one matter be hidden from you: that with יהוה one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
2Pe 3:9
 
יהוה is not slow in regard to the promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward us, not wishing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.1 Footnote: 11 Tim. 2:4.
2Pe 3:10
 
But the day of יהוה shall come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with intense heat, and the earth and the works that are in it shall be burned up.
 
 
Shalom Alechiem, i'll get to the rest of your response later:)

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RarelyJadedThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 11:03 am

God created the sun and moon on the first day—just sayin

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RarelyJadedThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 11:04 am

^ "and there was evening and there was morning—the first day." Genesis 1

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packerbacker12This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 11:05 am

just looked that up and jade is right

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Breece6This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 11:23 am

RarelyJaded and Packer:
 
AHHHHHH WRONG
 
Just goes to show how much you guys need to brush up on your Bible skills :P
 
Genesis Chapter 1, verses 14-16:
 
 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:
 
And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.
 
 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.
 
This was the THIRD DAY.  So in fact, according to the Bible, day and night were created before the sun and moon :0  
 
EXPLAIN THAT ONE LITERAL CREATIONISTS

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Breece6This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 11:28 am

 
Artgirl:
 
I agree with you, which is the point of my post, to show that Genesis is still relevant today, without being technically literal.
 
Also, I did read Packer's thread, the only problem I had about it was the fact that he was wrong about the people of that time period not knowing a lot of things.  
 
For example, a lot of his things were somewhere along the lines of "God told us not to do this, and it turns out that makes people sick!"
 
Just because people didn't know about germs doesn't mean they couldn't figure out that drinking dirty toilet water while defecating in your bed was unhealthy and led to disease.  
 
A lot of the things he attributed to us knowing only by "science" can be figured out by common sense.  
 
And just because soldiers didn't build latrines didn't mean they didn't know how.  They just probably didn't because of either time, resources, or cultural tradition of sleeping in your poop.
 
Either way, there were a lot of misconceptions, I might get around to bumping that and taking a look at the specific ones.

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RarelyJadedThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 12:11 pm

.... You can look it up, but I know I'm right. I'll get back to ya later.

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packerbacker12This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 1:37 pm

breece: AWWWWWWW WRONG
 
Genesis 1:1-5
 
Gen 1:1
 
 
In the beginning Elohim created the heavens and the earth.
Gen 1:2
 
And the earth came to be1 formless and empty, and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of Elohim was moving on the face of the waters. Footnote: 1Or the earth became.
Gen 1:3
 
And Elohim said, "Let light come to be," and light came to be.
Gen 1:4
 
And Elohim saw the light, that it was good. And Elohim separated the light from the darkness.
Gen 1:5
 
And Elohim called the light ‘day’ and the darkness He called ‘night.’ And there came to be evening and there came to be morning, the first day.
 
take that one non-literal creationist!
 

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packerbacker12This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Mar. 15, 2013 at 1:42 pm

breece: talk about my thread at my thread...

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