I have recently posed the question, Can We Take the Bible Literally? There are undoubtedly many texts that aren't meant to be taken literally. The Scriptures, at times, employ poetic license, allegory, apocalyptic, parable, and other non-literal forms and genres. So I don't believe every text is to be taken literally.
Nor do I think it's always necessary to force the pre-modern biblical texts into a scientific mold as if they were written to either demonize or to be harmonized with modern theories or discoveries. Modern science wasn't even on the biblical authors' radar screens.
While God knows all the secrets of the universe, I doubt that he revealed them to these authors who originally addressed pre-moderns. The biblical authors wrote within the framework of pre-scientific understandings, sometimes reflected in the Scriptures themselves, which does not make the biblical theology any less true.
I believe that God took the biblical authors where they were, not revealing everything to them, but just what was pertinent to human redemption. If it were proved to me beyond the shadow of a doubt (which it has not been) that creation did not take place in six literal days, or that the Book of Jonah is a parable, or that the "demons" Jesus cast out were actually diseases, this would not shake my faith in the least. But are some texts intended to be taken literally as objectively and historically true? Does the theological truth of some texts depend upon the literalness of historical events described therein?
I think a case in point would be the resurrection narratives in Matthew's Gospel. Matthew clearly argues for a historical, literal, and bodily resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Matthew dispels the rumor that disciples stole the body of Jesus. The tomb was well-guarded and well-secured (Matthew 27:62-66).
The rumor of the stolen body began with guards who claimed to have been asleep at the time of the alleged grave robbery (Matthew 28:11-15). As Rubel Shelly asked in his book, Prepare to Answer: A Defense of the Christian Faith, what court would accept the testimony of those who claim to have been asleep during the incident in question? Moreover, Shelly contends that had the disciples stolen the body, both religious and Roman officials had both the means and the motive to produce the body. They could "examine every piece of evidence" and "interrogate every witness" (p. 205).
We must reckon with the empty tomb when pondering the claims of the Christian faith. What did happen to the body of Jesus?
More later---soon---I promise.