ANSWERS: 13
  • I am a Christian and I believe that the Bible, especially Genesis were told as stories so that the people of the time could understand what God was all about. Otherwise they'd be terrified.
  • I didn't know that, AR..I am not Catholic. I say "bravo"..some people will fight to the death to uphold the proposition that every word in the Bible is to be taken literally..so I applaud the Vatican. I think some will accept this but many will still cling to their beliefs because that is all they've ever known! :) Happy Tuesday! :) ((hugs))
  • I love your interpretations of the holy scriptures through the lenses of today's standards. A good question should be: when did this trend begin? I can not find any phrase, source or reference in the entire bible which supports the possibility of non-literal accuracy. Would you be so kind in telling me of any hints?
  • Most Catholics (including myself), but not all (those few stubborn holdouts!)believe that the Bible teaches truth, but that truth may be historical, metaphorical, allegorical, ethical, mythological, or poetic. The Bible is completely inerent in what it intends to teach according to the understanding that would have been common when the writings were written. This is the teaching of the Church. The fact that we have don't have that understanding today does not eliminate or even reduce the inerancy of Scripture; it only demonstrates the limits of our own knowledge. There are parts of the Bible that are clearly intended to be interpreted literally and other parts which are clearly figurative and poetic. Revelation is both literal in its prophetic teaching but figurative and poetic in its description of that prophecy. These figurative parts do not contain error if they contain something that we would consider historically inaccurate because they did not intend to teach according to our view of history (so, to try and force a modern historical view is an erroneous exercise). As such it must always be interpreted in the context in which it was written (that is, within the tradition of the Apostolic Church), as well as in which it is being read (for example, in 1500 there was no reason for anyone not to believe that the 6-day creation was historical, now we know better). Some parts of the Bible are historical, and this historicity is critical to our faith (e.g., the Resurrection). Other parts are myth or allegory (which is how most but not all Catholics would view the Genesis creation story), where the critcal point is to search out the underlying truth (in this case, that God created the universe in some way, shape or form.....including evolution)
  • 1) "The Roman Catholic position on the Bible is further clarified in Dei Verbum, one of the principal documents of the Second Vatican Council This document states the Catholic belief that all scripture is sacred and reliable because the biblical authors were inspired by God. However, the human dimension of the Bible is also acknowledged as well as the importance of proper interpretation. Careful attention must be paid to the actual meaning intended by the authors, in order to render a correct interpretation. Genre, modes of expression, historical circumstances, poetic liberty, and church tradition are all factors that must be considered by Catholics when examining scripture. The Roman Catholic Church holds that the authority to declare correct interpretation rests ultimately with the church through its magisterium. This teaching is reiterated in the Catechism of the Catholic Church." Source and further information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biblical_inerrancy#Roman_Catholics 2) An adult person with scientific education and even just common sense would not take this creation myth literally, if they were thinking critically about it. But faith still seems to move mountains, in some cases. You can critisize the Catholic Church a lot about many issues, but this is one of the issues where they opened their eyes to the facts and stopped to support some of those prescientific doctrines (at least for the mainstream). Notice, however, that they still don't let you interpret the text as you like, or follow any scientific explanation, but still let the ultimate right interpretation be defined by their "magisterium". 3) The point is actually that the Catholic Church took the most conservative position about those matters which was compatible with keeping some credibility by their members. This is also the case for many other doctrines such as priest celibacy, priest gender, contraception and the like.
  • I would say that most Catholics accept it...at least from my experience. I'd like to say all but there are very few of the Vaticans teachings that ALL Catholics believe, so I'm sure that there are some out there who take the literalist view.
  • i was raised catholic. i think that the bible is a reference. do i take all it says literally. no. anybody can interpt the bible for their own purposes or you can take great quotes and live by them. i dont go to church every sunday, i try but sometimes i dont make it. but i have a great spiritual relationship with God. am i a perfect person-nope. still working on it and probaly will be for the rest of my life.
  • Yes, most do. Most Christians do not take the stories of creation in the Bible literally. Catholics believe the book of Genesis tells religious truth and not necessarily historical fact. One of the religious truths is that God created everything and declared all was good. Catholics can believe in the theories of the big bang or evolution or both or neither. On August 12, 1950 Pope Pius XII said in his encyclical Humani generis: The Teaching Authority of the Church does not forbid that, in conformity with the present state of human sciences and sacred theology, research and discussions, on the part of men experienced in both fields, take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter - for the Catholic faith obliges us to hold that souls are immediately created by God. Here is the complete encyclical: http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/pius_xii/encyclicals/documents/hf_p-xii_enc_12081950_humani-generis_en.html And here is the Address of Pope John Paul II to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences on October 22, 1996 speaking of the Theory of Evolution: http://www.newadvent.org/library/docs_jp02tc.htm The Church supports science in the discovery of God's creation. At this time, the theories of the big bang and evolution are the most logical scientific explanations. However tomorrow someone may come up with better ideas. As long as we believe that God started the whole thing, both the Bible and responsible modern science can live in harmony. The Clergy Letter Project an open letter endorsing the Theory of Evolution signed by over 10,000 clergy from many different Christian denominations: http://www.butler.edu/clergyproject/rel_evol_sun.htm With love in Christ.
  • actually most catholics DO take the bible literally... sorry....maybe protestants dont... but many DO TOO
  • Most Catholics I talk to remain Catholic, but pick and choose what they believe as do most protestants. I don't know any one religion that members buy everything except Jehovah's Witnesses.
  • i think that most American Catholics believe that the Bible is not to be taken literally. They do not need the church to tell them that. Most Catholics including some priests and Bishops ignore their own church anyway and do as they please.
  • Jesus' geneology can be traced back to Adam; Luke 3:23.

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