In what sense are these biblical books literal interpretations of what was happening? History means different things to differ people. History is always an interpretation. In fact, our concept of what is history is always changing. The result is that a literal interpretation means that you have to understand what they were trying to say about God, not the incidentals surrounding the events. The idea of footnoting has become a general practice that was not known over a thousand years ago. History sometimes refers to a good story. Even in our own lifetime we can still argue about the events surrounding the death of President John Kennedy or the victims at the OJ Simpson house. Thus, it does not seem out of place to question events that supposedly took place either pre-historically or thousands of years ago. They did not have to happen exactly as detailed by men writing about them years after the described events.
“At this also my heart trembles.
My heart leaps out of its place.
Listen to the thunder of his voice.
Listen to the rumbling that comes from his mouth.
Under the whole heaven he lets it loose.
His lightning goes to the corners of the earth.
After it his voice roars.
He thunders with his majestic voice.
He does not restrain the lightning when his voice is heard.
God thunders wondrously with his voice.
He does great things that we cannot comprehend.
To the snow he says.
‘Fall on the earth.’
The shower and the rain,
His heavy shower of rain,
Serve as a sign on everyone’s hand.
Thus all whom he has made may know it.
Then the animals go into their lairs,
They remain in their dens.
From its chamber comes the whirlwind.
Cold comes from the scattering winds.
By the breath of God ice is given.
The broad waters are frozen fast.
He loads the thick cloud with moisture.
The clouds scatter his lightning.
They turn round and round by his guidance.
They accomplish all that he commands them
On the face of the habitable world.
Whether for correction,
Or for his land,
Or for love,
He causes it to happen.”
God as the weather man continues in this hymn to the power of God. The voice of God can be heard in thunder. His lightning reaches the ends of the earth. He makes snow fall. He sends rains, heavy and light. We feel the rain as a way that God touches us. Animals know when to get out of the cold. God sends the cold and ice as he freezes up the rivers. God causes all this to happen here on earth. This is a Theo-centric climate concept. All comes from God, not man. He guides the climate to correct us, help the land, and show his love. God makes it happen. Humans are merely passive to the actions of God. This is very poetic and thus not literal. It is anthropomorphic in that we assign the voice of God, who has no voice, to the thunder. God does not literally speak to us in thunder.