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Can a literal Genesis creation story really hold up?

Discussion in 'Scriptural Debates' started by CG Didymus, Aug 17, 2013.

  1. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    YES!...we will....yes indeed!
     
  2. greentwiga

    greentwiga Active Member

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    One thing I struggled with was the description of Sodom at the southern end of the Dead Sea. It would not be visible to Lot nor would it be ever considered as lush as the Garden of Eden. I recently read a description by an archaeologist. He stated the word "plain" is an unusual one. It is Kikkar which is used for circular things like coins. Across the Jordan, North of the Dead Sea, is a circular plain. This area is visible to Bethel and very lush at times. The cities of the area seemed to have been destroyed about the same time. It needs to be seen if the destruction was about 1800 BC, the time of Lot. It seems to have been close to then.
     
  3. psychoslice

    psychoslice Veteran Member

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    The Genesis story was never to be taken as literal, this is the whole problem, how can anyone take a story like that literally, it makes no sense to me at all.
     
  4. 'mud

    'mud ~~ Life is Stuff ~~
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    hey Psych,
    There's a long path to adulthood amongst the branched forks protruding from the route of this road.
    Some never get there, fairy tales between worn covers, and not a nuance of true history.
    But it's a good nightime story.
    ~
    'mud
     
  5. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    I like scary stories!
    Start a thread and let's make sure it's about heaven!
    Who says heaven can't be scary?
     
  6. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    And which portion puts you off the most?
     
  7. outhouse

    outhouse Atheistically

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    But your only tie to Lot and this place is imagination.

    There is nothing at all from 1800BC that can be tied to any biblical character with any credibility what so ever.


    Israelites evolved from displaced Canaanites, and characters like moses and Abraham and noah are all considered mythology at this point due to the FACTUAL evidence that shows they did not exist as written.
     
  8. outhouse

    outhouse Atheistically

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    It takes fanaticism and fundamentalism to try and denounce education and knowledge from severe ignorance.

    You are correct as they come.
     
  9. greentwiga

    greentwiga Active Member

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    Just because it makes no sense to you is not proof that it was never meant to be taken as literal. After all, everyone knew that plate tectonics made no sense, same for the Ice Age. As for proof of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, they were wandering herdsmen. City people left potsherds and other remains in identifiable mounds. Wandering herdsmen would have left fewer remains, and they would be widely scattered with no currently visible markers to guide our digging. If we only dig in cities, we can only speak about city people.

    Another point is that myths are guaranteed to get some facts wrong. Homer put in some details that weren't invented until hundreds of years after the time of Troy. If one is to prove that the stories are myth, one can't just say everyone knows it, one has to prove it.

    Take Lot. If the cities I mentioned were all destroyed about 1700 - 1800 BC, then it doesn't prove Lot existed, but it shows that the story was not pure myth. If you find something confusing, mention it so we can discuss it. Sometimes the problem is the traditional interpretation, not the Bible.
     
  10. outhouse

    outhouse Atheistically

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    Exactly your problem.


    That and severe lack of knowledge and education on mythology.


    When you have an education on this topic, it does make sense, because we can see what YOU do not.


    Its why you make all these wild blind assumptions, and refuse to understand what is actually known.

    NO they are mythological characters with no historicity as existing, and its not based on a lack of evidence.

    it is the factual evidence that finds them literary constructs.

    And its that evidence your ignorant of.


    Wrong, factually wrong :slap:


    Without a historical tie that places Lot in these cities, your just guessing again from ignorance.

    Without an explanation of how that legend of lot would be passed down to generation to generation in previous legends before the bible, your guessing wildly. Your missing 800 years of legends to make that tie.

    As a matter of fact by what you are saying you are showing a complete ignorance of not only what is known, but your historical methodology isn't laughable its just down right sad at how religious belief has blinded you to proper methodology



    We have clear examples of how mythology ended up in Israelite mythology, and how they developed mythology. Take the river flood turned global after thousands of years of oral tradition. We see how Israelites created mythology from previous mythology. Your blind we are not.
     
    #1810 outhouse, Oct 4, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2014
  11. greentwiga

    greentwiga Active Member

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    Outhouse, you accuse me of things that are not true, such as my lack of knowledge and education on mythology. You assume that I just blindly follow traditional interpretation. You think that blindly stating over and over, "they are mythological characters with no historicity as existing." makes it true. You never discuss specifics. You seem to be a blind true believer. I have no interest in responding to you at all. I only will respond to people who will truly debate, even if they completely disagree with me, that is fine with me. You, though, I will no longer respond to.
     
  12. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    And you belong in the outhouse.
     
  13. outhouse

    outhouse Atheistically

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    Sorry I am accusing you by exactly what you state and what you posit ONLY.

    You lack any modern understanding of biblical history.


    My biggest factual problem with you, is how you leave hundreds if not thousands of year gaps from what you posit, to when the book was collected, compiled, redacted and re redacted.

    You leave these empty baseless claims with huge gaps we can drive semi's through



    There is a reason why you cannot refute a single sentence I write.
     
  14. Badran

    Badran Veteran Member
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    ***Mod post***

    Some posts in this thread have been deleted due to violation of rule 1.
     
  15. gnostic

    gnostic The Lost One

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    One of the things about Genesis' Abraham (then known as Abram) and Lot in regard to Sodom and Gomorrah was that they were involved in the war between the Cities of the Plain (valley of the Jordan river or the valley of the Dead Sea, or the Valley of Siddim) and that of Chedorlaomer of Elam (Genesis 14). Chedorlaomer supposedly took this Jordanian plain and have ruled this region for 13 years.

    Now here's the thing, greentwiga. Historically, Elam was a region situated between eastern shore of the Persian Gulf and the Zagros Mountains, in what is now south-west Iran (a distance of over 2000 km from the western border of Elam to the Dead Sea). No where in its Bronze Age history was there any Elamite presence in Canaan, let alone ruling the Valley of Siddim for 13 years, at some times between 1800-1700 BCE.

    In Elam, in that period, it was under Eparti dynasty (c. 1970 - 1770 BCE). And the Elamites, during the Old Babylonian period (2000-1600 BCE), were frequently at wars with its neighbours, in Mesopotamian Babylonia or others. The dynasty ended with the Kassites conquering both Elam and Babylonia.

    Before the 2nd millennium BCE, there have being a number of tussles between the Elamites and with Akaddians, first (2350-2200 BCE), then with on-and-off with Sumerian cities, with the Guitians. In one of these tussles in the early 2nd millennium BCE, Elam did ended the famous Sumerian 3rd dynasty of Ur; Ur's last king was Ibbi-Sin (1963 - 1940 BCE), but the Elamites were no where near Canaan.

    The Elamites may have traveled to the Judah, along with other Iranian people - the Persians and the Medes - during the Achaemenid dynasty (550 - 330 BCE), but not during the Bronze Age.

    Why would any king of Elam be interested in land over 2000 km away, when it had frequent troubles closer to home?

    Furthermore, there is historically, no Elamite king by the name - Chedorlaomer, especially in the Eparti dynasty.

    Genesis 14 has no basis of history; it is just a myth trying to elevate a legendary semi-nomadic patriarch, named Abraham, who could some how best a king that never existed, of some distant lands.
     
    #1815 gnostic, Oct 6, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2014
  16. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    That's not the reason why the story is touted as wholly mythic, though. It's touted as mythic because of its obvious parallel ties to earlier, Sumerian mythic stories, and because of the literary clues we find in the story. It reads more like myth than like ancient history. And it certainly doesn't read like science.

    Case in point is the fact that the facts as presented do not conform to what we know about the universe. For example, when Genesis talks about the sky, it uses the Hebrew term raqiya. Now, raqiya means literally "a hammered-out bowl." For a bowl to be hammered out, it would have to be metal. Upon this "bowl," placed upside-down over a (obviously) disc-shaped earth, were fixed the heavenly bodies -- stars, sun, etc.

    Obviously, the sky is not rigid, nor is it a dome. Therefore, the creation accounts must be mythic, not factual. And if the ancients knew that, they wouldn't have described the sky as such, unless they were being purposefully metaphoric in their writing, making the account mythic and metaphoric, not literalistic.
     
  17. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    And the stars are more to me than they were to any prophet gone before me.

    Doesn't mean Genesis is without merit.

    So you might have the skill to make sense of it.
    Doesn't mean I don't.
     
  18. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    Of course Genesis has merit! I never suggested that it didn't.
    I never suggested that you didn't.
     
  19. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    Excellent.
    Genesis is literal.
     
  20. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    Huh? How does that even follow from what you stated in your last post?? Or from what I said in my last post?

    Just because Genesis has merit does not mean that it is a literal account of the creative process. Genesis has merit as a theological document, not a scientific document.

    I never claimed that you don't understand Genesis. But if you claim Genesis is such a literal account, I have no choice now but to claim that you don't understand the literary nature of Genesis -- or that you're making a claim that doesn't jibe with your understanding. The first is ignorance. The second is deception.
     
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