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  #76  
Old Feb 27, '12, 9:30 am
grannymh grannymh is offline
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Unhappy Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by patg View Post
I don't agree. When I see the unqualified statement "For truth is set forth and expressed differently in texts which are variously historical, prophetic, poetic, or of other forms of discourse" in a document titled "Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation", things are pretty clear to me. I believe it is all true and also mostly didactic fiction.

Of course this just happens to be in direct support of my view of scripture (ala Raymond Brown/John Meier). In the 8 years I've been discussing this topic in these forums, I have read (and posted) hundreds of "favorite references" but the bottom line hasn't changed - the church requires literalistic believe in only a tiny handful of scripture stories.
Here is an out-of-context sentence from the "Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation",

"But the task of authentically interpreting the word of God, whether written or handed on, (8) has been entrusted exclusively to the living teaching office of the Church, (9) whose authority is exercised in the name of Jesus Christ."

In my humble opinion, that trumps the individual's freedom to choose whatever method in order "To search out the intention of the sacred writers, attention should be given, among other things, to "literary forms." For truth is set forth and expressed differently in texts which are variously historical, prophetic, poetic, or of other forms of discourse." from post 78.

Regardless of any individual's beliefs about literary forms, the key is that the task of authentically interpreting the word of God has been entrusted exclusively to ____

Please note that I am not disagreeing with the "variously historical, prophetic, poetic, or of other forms of discourse." That variety is a given. What I am concerned about are the authors who fill their own name in the ____ above.

Since you have more knowledge of the "Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation"
than I do --
Is there any place which gives specific, direct permission to immediately rescind the previously declared specific doctrines regarding the reality of Adam, Original Sin, and Jesus Christ?
Thank you.
  #77  
Old Feb 27, '12, 10:03 am
patg patg is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by grannymh View Post
In my humble opinion, that trumps the individual's freedom to choose whatever method in order "To search out the intention of the sacred writers, attention should be given, among other things, to "literary forms." For truth is set forth and expressed differently in texts which are variously historical, prophetic, poetic, or of other forms of discourse." from post 78.
WE ARE totally free to believe in alternate interpretations of the historical nature of the vast majority of the bible. No catholic is required to believe that the stories of Noah, Jonah, Job, the tower of babel, or even the birth stories of Jesus are literalistic history.

and I am not just expressing personal ideas or using individual freedom - these concepts are taught by some of church's greatest scholars, usually under the nihil obstat and imprimatur.
Quote:
Regardless of any individual's beliefs about literary forms, the key is that the task of authentically interpreting the word of God has been entrusted exclusively to ____
Yes, and that is why I don't try to, I rely on the church's scholars such as the ones I previously mentioned.
Quote:
Please note that I am not disagreeing with the "variously historical, prophetic, poetic, or of other forms of discourse." That variety is a given. What I am concerned about are the authors who fill their own name in the ____ above.
Like I said, I rely on those much more qualified than me (or any random internet poster).
Quote:
Since you have more knowledge of the "Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation"
than I do --
Is there any place which gives specific, direct permission to immediately rescind the previously declared specific doctrines regarding the reality of Adam, Original Sin, and Jesus Christ?
Thank you.
No need to - the church declares what we must believe on those subjects!
  #78  
Old Feb 27, '12, 11:04 am
grannymh grannymh is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Regarding Adam, Original Sin, and Jesus Christ

Quote:
Originally Posted by patg View Post
No need to - the church declares what we must believe on those subjects!
So what is it that we must believe about Adam, Original Sin, and Jesus Christ which can be found in the first three chapters of Genesis? I am primarily looking for the answer which connects all three subjects.

A good answer can be found in Humani Generis sections 36 and 37..
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/pi...eneris_en.html

Additional information can be found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition, paragraphs 355 - 421. Personally I like to start with paragraph 355 because it gives the status of human nature and the possible goal of the human person.
http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc/para/355.htm

The bottom line is --

Is Adam a real human being who, with Eve, founded the human species?
  #79  
Old Feb 27, '12, 11:13 am
patg patg is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by grannymh View Post
Regarding Adam, Original Sin, and Jesus Christ



So what is it that we must believe about Adam, Original Sin, and Jesus Christ which can be found in the first three chapters of Genesis? I am primarily looking for the answer which connects all three subjects.

A good answer can be found in Humani Generis sections 36 and 37..
http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/pi...eneris_en.html

Additional information can be found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition, paragraphs 355 - 421. Personally I like to start with paragraph 355 because it gives the status of human nature and the possible goal of the human person.
http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc/para/355.htm
I'm not sure where you are trying to go with this - I've already said the church defines what we must believe about these things and you've already provided the references???

What else is there to discuss on this particular subject? I never questioned anything to do with Adam, Original Sin, or Jesus Christ and the OP simply asked "Do you take Bible literally?". My answer was some but far from all of it, which is consistent with church teaching and the teaching of many of the church's most eminent scholars.
  #80  
Old Feb 27, '12, 11:24 am
grannymh grannymh is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by patg View Post
I'm not sure where you are trying to go with this - I've already said the church defines what we must believe about these things and you've already provided the references???

What else is there to discuss on this particular subject? I never questioned anything to do with Adam, Original Sin, or Jesus Christ and the OP simply asked "Do you take Bible literally?". My answer was some but far from all of it, which is consistent with church teaching and the teaching of many of the church's most eminent scholars.
I was editing my post 84 while you were posting. Sorry, that I didn't get the editing done quicker. Note: I do not deal with Noah, Job or other interesting people in the Old Testament.

Regarding the OP about taking the Bible literally. What do you consider literal in the first three chapters of Genesis?

Some of the basic Catholic doctrines are based on the literal existence of Adam. Many Catholics do not accept that Adam is the real founder of humanity and they do not accept that Original Sin was committed by only one person.

Here is the Post's last line.

The bottom line is --

Is Adam a real human being who, with Eve, founded the human species?
  #81  
Old Feb 27, '12, 11:38 am
patg patg is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by grannymh View Post
The bottom line is --

Is Adam a real human being who, with Eve, founded the human species?
Well yes, according to the church we must believe that there was an original first couple God used to found the human species. We do not have to believe in the literal creation accounts (or that their names were Adam and Eve). These accounts are myths used by the author to teach the truths about creation (or as the catechism states, "The biblical account expresses this reality in symbolic language..." and "The account of the fall in Genesis 3 uses figurative language, but affirms a primeval event,")

I still don't see what this has to do with the question at hand which was a general discussion of whether we take the bible literally. Even in this case we are required to believe the truth but not in a literalistic reading of the stories.
  #82  
Old Feb 27, '12, 12:09 pm
grannymh grannymh is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by patg View Post
Well yes, according to the church we must believe that there was an original first couple God used to found the human species. We do not have to believe in the literal creation accounts (or that their names were Adam and Eve). These accounts are myths used by the author to teach the truths about creation (or as the catechism states, "The biblical account expresses this reality in symbolic language..." and "The account of the fall in Genesis 3 uses figurative language, but affirms a primeval event,")

I still don't see what this has to do with the question at hand which was a general discussion of whether we take the bible literally. Even in this case we are required to believe the truth but not in a literalistic reading of the stories.

When people respond to the question of taking the bible literally with the answer some parts or that the allegory represents a truth, I am always curious about the some parts and what truth.

Thank you for your answer.
  #83  
Old Feb 27, '12, 9:27 pm
Lochias Lochias is offline
 
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by patg View Post
Well yes, according to the church we must believe that there was an original first couple God used to found the human species. We do not have to believe in the literal creation accounts (or that their names were Adam and Eve). These accounts are myths used by the author to teach the truths about creation (or as the catechism states, "The biblical account expresses this reality in symbolic language..." and "The account of the fall in Genesis 3 uses figurative language, but affirms a primeval event,")

I still don't see what this has to do with the question at hand which was a general discussion of whether we take the bible literally. Even in this case we are required to believe the truth but not in a literalistic reading of the stories.
This for me, too. I don't think anyone was disputing that there were an original first couple, just that the Bible, word for word, should not be taken literally in all instances. The Church gives us our solid ground, so that we don't stray into false conclusions about the Word of God.

I find it unlikely, for example, that God created the world in seven literal days. COULD He have? Absolutely, but given the things He's let us know about our world, it's unlikely. However, we know that God is a just God, a loving God, and that He has a deep and always-abiding love for all of his creation, just to name a few things off the top of my head that we can glean from the wonderful wisdom of Genesis. For things that are not readily apparent to me, I consult the teachings of the Church on the matter. Invariably, they are logical and true.
  #84  
Old Feb 28, '12, 9:37 am
Della Della is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by onlyvoice View Post
I beg to disagree. I don’t think you can compare how we make things with how God does His creating. There’s really no comparison. He is the Almighty. He can do anything. He creates – makes things out of nothing – so why can’t He do it right the first time? But didn’t He say, in His Word, that when He originally created the earth, it was so beautiful that the angels shouted for joy? He tells Job, “Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth... When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?”
Did not Jesus endure the cross, a very messy business indeed, for the joy that was to come? There's no need to be so literalistic.

Quote:
I don’t know where the problems lie if we take the Genesis account literally. I can’t see any. On the other hand, when we say the “days” are really epochs, we are confronted with some impossible situations. For example, how could the plants have survived without sunshine? Now, insects were made on the sixth day, how could some plants continue to exist for ages without their insect partners (bees, wasps, butterflies, moths)? If we say the creation days were thousands of years in length we are faced with the conclusion that most plants would have to live this period of time without producing seed. That’s an impossibility.
There's no difficulty at all--only in the way you are interpreting these verses. Moses wasn't interested in how every blade of grass came into being--he was trying to tell us that God created the heavens and the earth and all they contain in an orderly fashion and for our benefit. Picking it apart and making more of than was intended is what gets people tied into knots and the scientific community skeptical about religion. God wants us to know how to get to heaven in his Word, not how the heavens go, which is a matter of natural inquiry and not important to the salvation of mankind.
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  #85  
Old Feb 28, '12, 12:06 pm
Jerry-Jet Jerry-Jet is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Doesn't the Catholic Church say somewhere..maybe in the catechism..that normally the literal sense IS the way that scripture should be taken UNLESS it can be proved that another sense was intended?
  #86  
Old Feb 28, '12, 12:15 pm
Della Della is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry-Jet View Post
Doesn't the Catholic Church say somewhere..maybe in the catechism..that normally the literal sense IS the way that scripture should be taken UNLESS it can be proved that another sense was intended?
Yes, but literal is not the same thing as literalistic, which means every word has to be taken at face value, such as "cats and dogs fell from the sky". We all know that's an idiom for a hard rain, but no one in his right mind would think that actual canines and felines were dropping out of the skies.
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  #87  
Old Feb 28, '12, 5:09 pm
edwest2 edwest2 is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Della View Post
Did not Jesus endure the cross, a very messy business indeed, for the joy that was to come? There's no need to be so literalistic.



There's no difficulty at all--only in the way you are interpreting these verses. Moses wasn't interested in how every blade of grass came into being--he was trying to tell us that God created the heavens and the earth and all they contain in an orderly fashion and for our benefit. Picking it apart and making more of than was intended is what gets people tied into knots and the scientific community skeptical about religion. God wants us to know how to get to heaven in his Word, not how the heavens go, which is a matter of natural inquiry and not important to the salvation of mankind.



Moses was not telling us anything, it was the Holy Spirit of God. See 2 Peter 1:21.


http://bible.cc/2_peter/1-21.htm



Why was Jesus born? Why was His sacrifice necessary? The Bible tells us but there are those who seek to hide or obscure the truth.



Peace,
Ed
  #88  
Old Feb 29, '12, 3:23 am
grannymh grannymh is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerry-Jet View Post
Doesn't the Catholic Church say somewhere..maybe in the catechism..that normally the literal sense IS the way that scripture should be taken UNLESS it can be proved that another sense was intended?
To match up the Catechism with Scripture, check out the footnotes. Read and meditate on the whole Scripture chapter in addition to the cited verse(s). Those who have the book, can check out the Index of Citations.

One of the purposes of the Catholic Church is to teach Divine Revelation through the declared and proclaimed doctrines. It is so easy to start with a doctrine, itself, to find the truth. When using the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition, one needs to start with the first paragraphs which explain how to use the book. Then go to the Table of Contents in order to understand the book's structure. The glossary and the index in the back are essential.

Link to Catechism. http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc.htm
  #89  
Old Feb 29, '12, 12:16 pm
bextah bextah is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sedonaman View Post
Then how do you explain how light could have been created on the first day ["Let there be light."] when the sun, moon, and stars weren't created until the fourth day?
And there was nobody around to record it until the 6th day!
  #90  
Old Feb 29, '12, 12:48 pm
bextah bextah is offline
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Default Re: Do you take Bible literally?

Quote:
Originally Posted by onlyvoice View Post
I beg to disagree. I don’t think you can compare how we make things with how God does His creating. There’s really no comparison. He is the Almighty. He can do anything. He creates – makes things out of nothing – so why can’t He do it right the first time? But didn’t He say, in His Word, that when He originally created the earth, it was so beautiful that the angels shouted for joy? He tells Job, “Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth... When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?”

I don’t know where the problems lie if we take the Genesis account literally. I can’t see any. On the other hand, when we say the “days” are really epochs, we are confronted with some impossible situations. For example, how could the plants have survived without sunshine? Now, insects were made on the sixth day, how could some plants continue to exist for ages without their insect partners (bees, wasps, butterflies, moths)? If we say the creation days were thousands of years in length we are faced with the conclusion that most plants would have to live this period of time without producing seed. That’s an impossibility.
So where do the dinosaurs fit?

We understand now about the relationship between plants / insects / animals, but maybe at the dawn of creation it didn't work that way? Who is to say what is impossible for God?

Maybe everything existed and thrived initially simply because God willed it so, and then maybe he established relationships between his plant, animal and insect creations so they would need to rely on each other and work together to have the best possible existence?

Maybe these symbiotic relationships were created in a day, or developed over a thousand years. Maybe these relationships were formed and developed to help us to understand that every living thing is essential for the survival of another, and our love, understanding and respect of this is how we honour what He made.

Amazing relationships in nature confirm this for me all the time - like the actions of the spiders in Pakistan after the floods in 2010, they cocooned trees with their webs because the water took so long to recede - but these spun webs caught the mosquitoes that came due to the stagnant water that was left, so the potential threat of malaria was significantly less than predicted. I think before this, some people may have said it was impossible for some spiders to have a positive impact on the health of flood victims... God wasn't one of them

This part of the Bible was written by people without that scientific knowledge of the importance of bees to flowers or even the location of the sun in relation to Earth - they wrote within their limits, and quite beautifully I think, but not literally.
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