For some reason this line of argument reminds me of those who deny the
historicity of the Book of Mormon:
The Book of Mormon doesn't have to be literally a record of ancient America
as long as the principles that it teaches are true. There probably weren't
any Nephites and Lamanites in ancient America. It is an extended allegory
that the Lord inspired Joseph Smith to make because of the wonderful,
eternal truths that it teaches.
Is this an example of a strawman? I wasn't speaking about the Book of
Mormon, but the Bible - specifically the Old Testament. I don't hold the
position on the Book of Mormon that you are apparently trying to claim that
Sorry, but in my book, this kind of reasoning just won't cut
it. Admittedly there is symbolism in the Bible. There is symbolism in the
Book of Mormon, too. But there really was a Father Lehi, and there really
were Nephites and Lamanites. And it matters very much to me whether or not
the God of the Old Testament parted the Red Sea, or Jesus Christ and Peter
literally walked on water. If they didn't, then the scriptures are a lie,
and I might just as well chuck all this religion stuff.
Why would the scriptures be a lie if the parting of the Red Sea was merely
a symbolic testimony of the Israelites leaving Egypt and Pharaoh's
inability to stop them?
Notice John that I do not question the fact that the Israelites existed,
that they left Egypt, or that they physically crossed the Red Sea. I am
saying that a belief in the actual parting, a'la Charlton Heston, is not
necessary for a testimony that God is real, that he guided the Israelites
past that physical obstacle, and He is willing to do the same for us today.
You see. I know that the Bible might have errors in it. But there are
undoubtedly errors in the findings, interpretations, and conclusions of
archaeologists and paleontologist, too. Nothing that man touches can be
without error. But I don't know why religious people would assume the
error is with the Bible rather than the scientists. That is the crux of
the matter. When push comes to shove, why would anybody put scientists
above the scriptures?
And I know that the Bible _does_ have errors in it, not just might. But it
is _still_ the Word of God; how can this be? Simple: the errors are in the
_specifics_, not the true principles.
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