An account is testimony, witnesses telling what they have seen. The speaker or writer -- the one giving the account -- does not need to be a direct witness herself. She may be a journalist or a historian compiling the testimony of others. But without some basis in such testimony from actual witnesses we haven't got what we can call an account.He also notes that other examples of accounts in the Bible have eye witnesses, especially the acts of Jesus, while the creation story does not. Is this semantic? Perhaps not since it goes to the heart of the “Were you there?” argument of Ken Ham's, who then states that we have God's account. In point of fact, no one was. While I have no doubt that the book of Genesis is what God handed down to Moses, in a sense, we are taking Moses' word for it.
When I point this out -- that the story in Genesis 1 is not an "account" -- the creation-ists get upset with me, as though I were attacking the book of Genesis. But I'm not attacking it, I'm defending it. Genesis 1 does not itself claim to be an account. It does not present itself as such and it does not willingly comply with those who would treat it as such. To read the story as it is, in the way that it presents itself, cannot be an attack. It's far more hostile to the text to declare, with no basis from the text itself, that it must be read as something it does not and cannot claim to be.
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