I didn’t realize you were such a closet Calvinist!

🙂 I think I’m more of a closet agnostic. God is sovereign and involved at all points, yet human beings are to be held responsible. Something between the Wesleyan-Arminian position and Openness theology seem to me to explain this best, but I admit to not being very satisfied. In my view, each group can bring forward a selection of texts that make a strong case–as long as one doesn’t read the rest. So bottom line, I really don’t know how they fit together.

It’s funny, but I think you’re view on literalism in Genesis 1 is in one respect more conservative than mine! I think theistic evolution is fully compatible with a literal reading of the text, and you don’t.

You are probably correct here, though in the rest of the paragraph, I think we’re using slightly different definitions of “literal.” But for this one point, I think our definitions coincide. I think Genesis 1 & 2 expressed creation very accurately, as accurately as could be done speaking into the cosmology of the time. I treat the cosmology more as language than as fact. Thus I think it is literal in its original sense, but has to be translated.

The days function in the framework of the semi-poetic narrative as days, even if they don’t represent 24-hour periods of time in reality.

You’re right, that does illustrate the difference. I think the original author was thinking in terms of 24-hour periods. Not God, who inspired, but the human author who wrote. Since God chooses to communicate with humans, we have to see through human language.

I too look forward to the WBC volume, though I have no information on its release. I have found WBC quite useful, and as I think you already know, I love studying the Torah.