Our allergy to the legendary

The enlightenment has absolutely no use for legends. Any hint of legend is seen as an embarrassment and obviously false in every possible way. False not just as fanciful or exaggerated but in the same category as “wicked lie of the devil”. There is no distinction. There is only cold logic. If it isn’t sufficiently verifiable by scientific method or by contemporary historical research, then it is pure hot garbage, the stuff of the void.

Contemporary Christians in thrall of this sort of epistemology find scripture, especially the early chapters of Genesis to be intensely disconcerting. They smell legendary. How embarrassing! That will not do. They must be reread and conformed into something more palatable for the modern age. The days of creation must be 24 hours, or even 1440 clock-hand seconds in length. Each metaphor or piece of imagery must unlock or at least correspond to some recently articulated piece of geology or astronomy. Later books must be heavily footnoted with as much 20th century archeology as can be dug up and appropriated. Once properly modernized, we can get back to the much more important and comfortable work of expositing the Greek epistles where everything is kept either very practical or philosophical and never mythical thank you very much.