KM, you mention AnnaReiers' comments, which you rightly describe as "loosely" based on the Bible story of Creation. Then you ask for my input.

In my opinion, the book of Genesis is no more about the modern way of looking at cosmology and astronomy than the book of Numbers is about mathematics.
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And speaking about the modern way, check out:
http://www.library.usyd.edu.au/libraries/rare/modernity/index.html

http://www.library.usyd.edu.au/libraries/rare/modernity/cosmo.html

FOR WHO LIKE TO TAKE THE BIBLE STORIES AS LITERAL TRUTH:
http://www.alltruebible.com/index.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Ussher#Education
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Even as a youth I did not take all the stories of the Bible as being literally true and historical.
BTW, great scholar that he was, Bishop James Usher, a Protestant bishop Ireland, missed the point that there are two stories of creation in Genesis.

The first story,uses the Hebrew ELOHIM (gods) which we translate 'God'. This story probably originated in Babylonia (Persia) where there are two rivers. It talks poetically about the creation of things out of raging chaotic light-less waters. The power of the spirit of God brings light. This story ends at Chapter 2, verse 4a.

The second story--the Garden of Eden story--uses YAHWEH ADONAI, which we translate 'Lord God'. The story probably originated in Arabian dessert, south of modern Israel and Jordan. Note the reference to water coming up from beneath the surface of the ground. Sounds like a reference to an oasis in the dessert.

FOR A LIBERAL AND ANALYTICAL WAY OF READING THE BIBLE CHECK OUT
http://liberalevangelical.org/index
John S. Spong's book on Rescuing the Bible from ffundamentalism.
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Edited by Revlgking (07/30/09 05:43 AM)
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G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org