So are we to simply throw our hands up into the air and say that the Bible is just a collection of legends and fairy tales? Or are we to claim that scientists must have it all wrong, that the Bible must be literally true?
The answer to both questions is a resounding "No!"
Before I go further, I should mention that I've been Episcopalian, Southern Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, almost Presbyterian, and almost Catholic. After these, I became agnostic and almost atheist — I even read some of the works of Carlos Castaneda and Alastair Crowley in my search for the truth that seemed ever more out of reach. I felt then as now that I cannot be a member of any religion whose beliefs I can easily disprove; after all, is the discussion of the salvation of our eternal souls not the most serious of all possible subjects?
Then I was invited to a Church — the Iglesia ni Cristo (Tagalog for "Church of Christ") — where I was taught that much of the Bible is metaphor, but much is also factual; and most importantly, from my cynical standpoint, contains at least one prophecy that is measurably verifiable to anyone with access to an encyclopedia. Now I won't go into our beliefs here. If anyone's curious, I'll be happy to answer as best I can, but the Bible plainly states that only ministers, only those who are sent by God, may preach the word of God — and the words preached by these ministers cannot conflict with one another.
But let's go back to the subject at hand, the Bible. To those who are troubled by those parts of the Bible that are obviously impossible (like Noah's flood, for example), I submit to you that there are three possibilities: one, that they are metaphor for humanity's edification; two, that they are legends wrongly inserted at one point or another by scribes (see Jeremiah 8:8); or three, that they are simply misunderstood by those who read them.