I'd start there on those threads. You can't inherit something from a story that is not literal truth.
No sir, this is not true.
Great literature provides insight into human nature. To be human is to inherit the traits that great literature examines. That is what makes some work of literature great - the author(s) were observant enough of human nature around them to fashion stories which explain human nature in a somewhat universally comprehensible fashion.
Humans inherit the flaws of the Greek gods not because the stories about those gods are literally true, but because the people who crafted those stories did so to pattern human nature.
Seriously? "great literature of the bible..." It is far from being "great literature".
You would then have to explain why parts of the Bible are taught in university literature classes.
It is horribly compiled, the context is so self canceling, the characters are utterly shallow and often times contradictory even in their own personality.
What do you mean by "horribly compiled"? Which version?
If we take, for example, the King James Version, it is difficult to imagine a better compilation: the language is eloquent yet simple, which made the work readily accessible to the larger population who, at the time of the compilation, had no access to scripture. This is the making of great compilation.
And what do you mean by "context is so self canceling"?
Do you mean the setting of the stories, or the language of the stories? If you mean the setting, I cannot imagine how any of the settings would be "self canceling" - whatever that might mean. And if you mean the language, again I have to ask: which version? Considering the hundreds of versions, I am in doubt as to whether or not this is an applicable criticism.
As for utterly shallow characters, I hope you are making a joke. Is Abraham a shallow character? Moses? Job? Jesus?
As for characters who sometimes act contrarily to their typical nature, first I wonder at examples, but second I ask: so what? Cervantes points out the times when Sancho Panza acts contrary to his typical nature! And Don Quixote
is considered one of the greatest, if not the greatest, novel ever written.
If the hype were taken off it as a religious book, it would definitely not receive the best sellers list.
What must be understood is that best sellers become them for a reason - there is something about the stories and the language of the books that catch the affections of people. The books which became the New Testament, for example, became widely popular for a reason
- not simply because they were called religious texts. They became popular and revered because of their content, their content as religious books. People are, by and large, religious after all.
The only reason it makes it on the list is because for every new hotel that opens, they buy one for ever room.
Gideon's Bibles explain away the thousands of years of being one of the most popular books, and sometimes the most popular book, in the world? I doubt that a modern phenomenon such as Gideons can explain away the Bible's historical popularity - or did that group also circulate the Gospels among Second Century AD slaves in the Roman Empire?
Besides, popularity is not necessarily an indication of greatness - the Left Behind
series is widely popular and absolute rubbish.
It is not something that is widely consumed as a great read.
Evidence, please? I read the Bible for pleasure - am I alone in this world?
It is often a chore to read from cover to cover
Many people say that reading Shakespeare is a chore - so what?
Further, the Bible is not designed to be read from cover to cover - each book exists on its own. It is an anthology. We can sit down to read just Matthew, or just Revelations, or just Genesis. For example, one need not read the Mahabharata
from cover to cover in order to read and enjoy the Bhagavad Gita
on its own.
and I will bet that a huge majority of Christians have actually never read it from cover to cover. They think going to church counts as reading the bible.
What does any of this have to do with the Bible being something other than great literature?
Let's try the same argument with a different work: I will bet that a huge majority of Americans have never read Walden from cover to cover. Obviously, the ignorance of a given population of the work is no strike against the quality of the work itself.
The adam and eve story has lots of holes. To actually find a logical moral or teaching is far fetched. What's it saying other than obey or be casted out into death. Would it need to be written in such a way to make that message? No.
Most stories have some holes. But something to remember: the story of Adam and Eve is contained in five different books, and that the narrative is split for a reason
. We have to remember that, as with many ancient tales of the like, the source material is not a single source, but a collection of many divergent tellings of stories related to the same characters.
As for your claim about logic, morals, and teaching, you could not be more mistaken. But rather than explain the story to you, I urge you to check into the thousands upon thousands of pages of commentary available on the story.
But your own words should tip you off to your error - "Would it need to be written in such a way to make that message?" The message you refer to being "obey or be cast out into death". Obviously if that is the message the story would not need to be written as it is: so ask yourself why, then, is the story written as it is! Instead of writing off the work as junk try some study.
If this is your criticism of the Bible, I would be sad to hear your criticism of Gilgamesh!