Steve's Herpetological Blog

An insight into the life of Steve, his research and the many books he reads


#StevesLibrary: The Serpent’s Promise

How to sell me a book, stick a frog or a snake on the front cover. Done! There have been a number of people in the past that have tried to scientifically analyse The Bible and explain each of the phenomena and miracles in a logical way. None have done so like Steve Jones. The Good Book is considered to be one of the first science books but we’ve come a long was in the centuries since it was first penned. The Bible means many different things to as different people with members of the Christian faith viewing it as the word of God. For others, it is a record of society in the Middle East viewed as a history book.

Jones is both careful not to offend but also clever in his deconstruction of The Bible in The Serpent’s Promise, explaining events in a simple yet profound way. Take the book of Genesis for example. It’s one everyone in the Western World is familiar with as being the first book of The Bible. When looked at carefully, it is less of a scientific text and more of a genealogical record. There are of course some inconsistencies within such as God creating plants before the Sun which clearly the wrong away around. Jones works around these problems and updates the tales to fit our modern understanding of science comparing the two to determine which is more likely.

I’d recommend this book purely because of it’s wit and it’s clearcut method. However, it could do with some more work in terms of retelling The Bible as it does seem like some books or passages were cherry picked due to their ease of correction. I’m also sure this was also due to time constraints as rewriting the whole bible to make it factually sound would be a monumental task! It’s an important read in order to understand why in a technologically advanced civilisation that people still hold dear to books such as Genesis despite the mountain of evidence against them.


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