We seem to have reached an accord. I agree with this completely. Now allow me to suggest that this supports my position that Genesis in particular, is wrong, rather than metaphorical. To be metaphorical, the author must be completely aware that his tale is a figure of speech rather than literal.
To my knowledge, (please correct me if I'm wrong), Homer presented his works as an art form, rather than instruction.
I disagree somewhat, for this reason: I don't believe that we can fairly infer what the author(s) thought or didn't think, using modern symbology. the mapping between us and them is too distorted. It's like judging Nero harshly for using Christians as human torches at one of his feasts. A barbaric lighting system and probably not efficient. But Nero was interested in conveying multiple messages using metaphors to every segment of his city and nation. Was it harsh? Uh, yeah. Even his sympathetic contemporaries thought it a bit over the top. But it was not insane, it was not novel. It was merely excessive.
We share a lot more in common with urban Romans of 1700 years ago than we do with pastoral semi-literate nomads of 3,000 years ago. Roman poetry and plays make sense. Roman engineering and science make sense. Roman art makes sense. Roman politics for the most part makes sense to us. Roman religion -- eh, not so much I guess.
In contrast, we share almost nothing with ancient Hebrews. What do modern Americans know about agrarian or pastoral life? The Hebrews were not interested in engineering and technology, they freely adopted whatever they could from conquering or conquered neighbors. As a result, their art and architecture is undistinguished. About the only thing of theirs that we do understand, at least to some degree, is their religion, which we adapted to our own modern western culture. St John's metaphor of the good shepherd is an excellent example. Unless we have some idea of pastoral living, it makes the Good Shepherd sound like a thoughtful pet owner. Good for him!
More specifically addressing Genesis, I think most modern scholars accept that much of the book was an oral history that wasn't written for perhaps a couple thousand years. We can't even agree on a story concerning Dubyuh, wonder what it would look like after 2,000 years of mouth-to-ear-to-mouth transmission! The oral tale itself has elements that most scholars attribute to the Exile, when the defeated Hebrews were sent to Babylon for a couple of generations. Evidently the Babylonian metaphors sneaked under the tent. Thus, the different creation myths of chapters 1 and 2. Chapter 1 is all Hebrew, Chapter 2 is Babylonian-Hebrew. Also the frequent polytheistic references in Genesis. Thus, a story thousands of years and culturally dissimilar became part of the canon. How? When the Babylonian Jews returned they forced the unexiled Jews to adopt the exiled Jews wholly scripture, which had an urban/polytheistic bias, and abandon their earlier strictly monotheistic, pastoral/agrarian bias.
In closing, I have to say it amuses me to hear people sometimes argue that the Bible is literally true. When demonstrated that the Bible is itself, an amalgamated text from a variety of competing cultures and shot through with inexplicable anachronisms, they place the problem squarely on the shoulders of the scholars who have, since the Reformation, been struggling to produce the most accurate possible interpretation of those ancient texts. Modern literalists, literally don't know what they are talking about.