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Old 09-08-2001, 09:36 PM   #11
Amos
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Quote:
Originally posted by Boro Nut:
<STRONG>

Oh you are so right. It was a lizard, and it was talking. What does that prove to you? I cannot explain further, as I am apt to make a fool of myself.

David Icke</STRONG>

Hardy called it a salamander in "The Convergeance of the Twain" with the words "salamandrine fire"

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Old 09-09-2001, 06:42 AM   #12
kctan
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Its just a simple little side story as told by Papaver. Genesis 1 & 2 are two creations stories preserved over the ages & this little story could be rename 'how the serpent loose its legs' & 'how humans stopped being stupid slaves'.
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Old 09-09-2001, 06:54 AM   #13
Amos
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Quote:
Originally posted by kctan:
<STRONG>Its just a simple little side story as told by Papaver. Genesis 1 & 2 are two creations stories preserved over the ages & this little story could be rename 'how the serpent loose its legs' & 'how humans stopped being stupid slaves'.</STRONG>
You mean "how the serpent was engaged and humans became stupid slaves" don't you?

Why else would we be looking for destiny?

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Old 09-10-2001, 03:16 AM   #14
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Hi JohnClay,
I think your question is one which is certainly worth consideration.

If we were to take the fundamentalist literal interpretation of the passage, then what we have is a story about a talking snake, which as kctan points out might as well be named 'how the serpent lost its legs' and might as well be by Rudyard Kipling. I agree with what appears to be the general consensus here that such an interpretation would mean that the story is a primitive myth and of no real value.

Alturnatively we have the interpretation of the liberal end of the spectrum which would declare the story to be pure myth metaphorical in its entirity and the only truth in it is perhaps that man in general (not a literal Adam and Eve) fell from God's grace somehow. While this gets us nicely out of the position of having to take the text seriously, I feel that it does injustice to the text.

The third catagory of interpretation which should not be overlooked is that the story is a blend of truth and metaphor. This appears to be confirmed in later parts of the Bible. As you note the Book of Revelation refers to the serpent as the Devil. Frankly, intellectually the idea that the tempter was Satan and not a mere talking snake who tempted for no apparent reason makes a great deal more sense to me. Thus I would say the truth lies somewhere in between fact and metaphor, as I would imagine does most mythology to some degree or another. Thus I think Adam and Eve were probably literal people. Eden I imagine is both literal and figurative, both representing God's beautiful creation and being that creation. The two trees are probably completely figurative - the point of the story is not about the fruit, it is about man disobeying God. Another culture with a similar creation myth has man eating white Strawberries. The point is the same, whether by eating something forbidden or by some other act entirely: Man directly disobeyed God at the promptings of Satan and punishment followed. That I think is the heart of the story. Any attempt to take the story more literally is, I think, failing to recognise the story as the myth that it is. Similarly I think any attempt to call the story a metaphor in its entirely is to fail to appreciate the blendings of truth with metaphor that occur in such myths.

Thus to answer your original question, I think what the Jews believe is irrelevant: Most of us here seem to be agreed that to take the story literally in its entirity is simply laughable.

Tercel
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Old 09-10-2001, 04:25 AM   #15
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Tercel:
I'm not a Christian and I'm skeptical about the truthfulness of the Bible, but I think that the Bible is very clear that the story of Adam and Eve is real history.
Here's some creationist/fundy articles:
What About The Snake in the Garden of Eden?
Who Was the Serpent?
Does God expect us to read Genesis 1-11 as a record of authentic historical fact, or is this simply a collection of parable-like stories?
How should we interpret Genesis 1-11?

Anyway, they believe that Satan possessed a snake, and God cursed the snake species as a reminder of the fall. That may have support from the New Testament, but going by Genesis itself, it seems there was no demon posession involved at all. Perhaps the writer of Revelation reinterpreted Genesis so that the story was better, having a single enemy throughout the whole story of the Bible.
I think the only parts in the Bible that explicitly say that the snake was the devil are Revelations, and perhaps John 8:44 - "You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies."
BTW, translations such as the Good News Bible use the word "snake" instead of serpent, clarifying that a snake is involved.
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Old 09-10-2001, 04:42 AM   #16
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Talking

All I know is, this is what Genesis 4:1 says

Quote:
And Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and brought forth Cain and said, I have gained a man through God.

(Septuagint)
Who said God was bored...how come Eve gives Adam no credit...poor Adam

Doesn't this remind you of how Joseph had nothing to do with Jesus' conception according to the NT???

Yeah, I know it's not entirely relevant...

It kinda is, though...

love
Helen
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Old 09-10-2001, 05:28 AM   #17
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the problem that xians have had since the onset is that the biblical jesus obviously believed that the accounts in genesis were literally true, and that they were in fact written by none other than moses himself. because of this, we have people believing in a 6-day creation and a global flood, and totally dismissing redaction & multiple authorship.

how many YEC jews have you ever met???
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Old 09-10-2001, 08:47 PM   #18
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JohnClay,
Quote:
I'm not a Christian and I'm skeptical about the truthfulness of the Bible, but I think that the Bible is very clear that the story of Adam and Eve is real history.
Here's some creationist/fundy articles:
Obviously the creationist/fudamentalist view is that it is literal history - by definition of "fundamentalist" that is their view. Unfortunately for them, it does not make it right.
I am a Christian and believe in the truth of the Bible. Yet it is clear that the story of Adam and Eve is a Hebrew Creation myth and it deserves to be read as such. That it is in the Bible means there is something to be learned from it, but it hardly follows that we should take it literally. The Book of Revelation makes clear that the snake in the story was a metaphor for the Devil, making very clear to us that parts of the story are meant to be taken metaphorically. Obviously the fundamentalists can't accept this and so they create their "Devil possessed the snake" theory in order to try and force their literal reading on to the story despite the clear indications that such a reading is unwarrented.

Tercel
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Old 09-11-2001, 04:46 AM   #19
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Tercel,
If you look it Genesis, it appears that it involves one continuous story. Where do you think the metaphorical stories end and history begins in Genesis? Or maybe anything that sounds plausible is history, and anything that doesn't is just a metaphor?
I think some verses from Revelations is hardly evidence that the authors of Genesis meant the story of the fall to be taken metaphorically.
Genesis 3:1 (GNB) says "Now the snake was the most cunning animal that the Lord God had made."
You're saying that that is just a metaphor. Perhaps the verse means that Satan is like a serpent, and traditionally people think serpents are pretty crafty.
But what about verses 14 and 15? They talk about what snakes have to go through.
Perhaps you could argue that the snake was a general metaphor for evil and temptation, but only the verses in Revelations say that Satan is what that snake represented.
In Luke 3:23-38, it lists the ancestors of Jesus. It lists every single ancestor, all the way back to Adam. His earliest ancestors are in the early chapters of Genesis, so it appears that this involves real history. Do you think that the list of Jesus's ancestors is an accurate list? Or is it a "metaphor"?
Also, in Genesis, it lists a lot of figures - the ages of people when they had children and when they died. Some lived over 800 or 900 years. Is that list an extended metaphor? Why didn't it just say "they lived as long as the mountains" - why did they make up seemingly realistic/random/irregular ages?
In Genesis 17:17 it says that Abraham was 100 years old and Sarah was 90 and they later had a baby. Were those ages metaphors?
In Genesis 25:7 it says that Abraham lived to be 175 and in Deut. 34:7 it says that Moses lived to be 120. Are those things metaphors? I guess you'll say that anything that sounds plausible isn't a metaphor and anything that doesn't sound realistic is a metaphor, or an exaggeration. But if you look at the style of Genesis, there isn't anything distinguishing the historical information from the "metaphors" or the exaggerations.
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Old 09-11-2001, 04:58 AM   #20
Ron Garrett
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It's not that hard to find the parallels between the Genesis creation stories and the Egyptian cults of Heliopolis, Hermopolis and Thebes, versions of which pre-dated Hebrew written tradtions by a couple of millenia. The snake is the serpentine wisdom god Set. The notion of devils is something the Israelites picked up in Babylon.
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