Hi there, @Lostnfound. It is a pleasure to meet you. Like you, I am also new to these forums. (This might be my third post, I think?) But I came here for reasons that are a bit different from yours. I’m here because I enjoy having my ideas tested and refined through the fires of this layman’s version of peer-review. Exploring and explaining my beliefs to others forces me to really understand them, a level of familiarity and depth that breeds a highly developed perspicuity and intelligibility. As someone once said, “If you can’t explain it, you don’t understand it.” And my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ keep me on the straight and narrow with their intense critical scrutiny, ensuring that my beliefs remain consistent with a biblical faith and evangelical theology. (By the way, it’s really nice to meet a fellow skeptic and advocate of the scientific frame of mind.)
1. Jesus and the New Testament authors seem to believe in a literal account of Genesis.
I know that young-earth creationists make this argument routinely enough, but is it true? When their argument is examined closely, I cannot help noticing that they stretch the conclusion beyond the supporting evidence. As I understand it, what Jesus and the New Testament authors took literally was the existence of Adam (and Eve), as well as his federal headship over all mankind in covenant with God by which he plunged us all into sin when he fell. Does accepting those points commit someone to only a young-earth creationist interpretation of Genesis? Hardly. Somehow they believe that a literal Adam means that the universe is less than 10,000 years old, but that’s simply false. As others have pointed out, there are many evolutionary creationists who hold to a literal Adam and Eve. I am one of them.
“But,” someone objects, “the genealogies.” I know. More on that later.
2. If Genesis is not to be taken literally, the rest of the Bible is open to question.
I highly recommend John H. Walton, The Lost World of Genesis 1 (2009).  After studying Gregory K. Beale and his argument on temple imagery throughout the Bible, starting with Adam and Eve in the garden,  I was reading Walton’s book when their exegetical arguments coalesced into an epiphany that hit me hard. More on that later. But it was Walton and his exegesis of Genesis 1 that really brought it home for me, namely, that none of the young-earth creationist material I’ve read over the decades has ever interpreted Genesis literally. I’m quite serious. They say they do, of course, but look again at what their arguments involve. It’s always a plain or straight-forward reading of Genesis 1 from an English translation using modern categories of thought. All of that makes a literal interpretation impossible.
In order to take Genesis 1 literally, what is needed is a robust historical-grammatical exegesis of the text in its original language and ancient cultural context, to be immersed as much as possible in what the human author and his audience would have understood (which wasn’t English, for starters). We quite naturally think that to create is to bring something into existence, which is understood in material terms, but that is precisely the problem. “We” are the ones who think that way, and it’s so intuitive and ingrained that we’ve never thought to question it. Worse still, we simply imposed our modern categories on this ancient text without a second thought, taking it for granted that people over three thousand years ago thought in the same terms. But maybe there are some important questions we need to ask related to responsible and meaningful exegesis, important historical and grammatical questions. The ancient Israelites didn’t view the world (as we do) in terms of its material structure and properties, as if it was a vastly complex machine engineered by a transcendent designer. They viewed it in terms of its order and function, as if it was a sacred kingdom with a sovereign ruler.
“The most respectful reading we can give to the text,” Walton explained, “the reading most faithful to the face value of the text—and the most ‘literal’ understanding, if you will—is the one that comes from their world, not ours.” This goes far, far deeper than looking at the Hebrew word for “day.” And it is what Walton has done in the book that I (and others) have recommended to you. For the first time ever in my life, I was presented with an authentically literal interpretation of Genesis 1. And it threw open so many doors on numerous other scriptures, tying them together into a coherent temple image with a Sabbath rest awaiting the people of God. (Beale is indispensable here, too.) It also inspired within me a deep reverence for nature, for it became impossible to view any part of it in secular terms. As Walton said, we don’t have natural resources, we have sacred resources. All of creation, including everything in this world, belongs to God. We are stewards, not consumers. We must care for creation, not exploit it. And so on.
In fact, Genesis ought to be taken literally. But don’t be taken in by what young-earth creationists pretend is literal. It’s nothing of the sort.
3. Understanding different views in order to discuss them in a study group.
I don’t know what views you have been examining but I would nominate evolutionary creationism, and for several reasons. First, it is rapidly becoming popular within the Christian community of faith as an old-earth view that accepts the theory of evolution and its relevant sciences (viz. paleontology, population and developmental genetics, biogeography, evo-devo and so forth). There are a couple of different old-earth views on offer (such as progressive creationism) but none of them accept the theory of evolution. This is the only old-earth view that does. (There is theistic evolution, of course, but its inherent deism is contrary to the trinitarian creator God of the Bible. It also takes for granted that there are “purely natural processes,” but the Bible clearly teaches that there is no such thing.) Anyway, since it is rapidly becoming popular, it is worth taking seriously and learning about. For this I (very) highly recommend Denis Alexander, Creation or Evolution (2014). 
Second, it situates the science and history of evolution within a biblical world-view. Many evolutionary creationists, myself included, are evangelical Christians who have a firm commitment to the supreme authority of Scripture as the enscripturated Word of God, the only infallible rule of faith and life. As a theological perspective on the science of evolution from a biblical world-view, evolutionary creationism does not subject the Bible to the authority of science; it is rather the other way around, science is subject to the authority of the Word of God revealed in Scripture. All things are under Christ’s authority, including science. This means a lot of different things, too much to get into in this thread, but it’s fleshed out really well in the apologetics of covenant theology. 
Third, it allows for Adam and Eve as historical figures. My own evolutionary creationist perspective doesn’t just allow for it but demands it. However, I am compelled by reality to acknowledge that there are evolutionary creationists who feel at liberty to dispense with a historical Adam. I don’t get it, I think that generates a host of profound theological problems, but that’s a different discussion for elsewhere. Nevertheless, for Christians like me who consider a historical Adam to be vitally important theologically, it is nice to have an evolutionary view that welcomes that doctrine.
4. If Adam, then young Earth, because genealogies.
Anyway, back to the epiphany that resulted in a massive, seismic paradigm shift for me. It was after reading Beale and Walton that it suddenly occurred to me:
- Natural history and redemptive history are not necessarily the same thing.
Theologians have been so clear that the Bible is not about science but about salvation. From start to finish, it’s about Christ and his redeeming work, his life, death, and resurrection. After he was raised from the dead, he encountered those two men on the road to Emmaus and “beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them the things written about himself in all the scriptures” (Luke 24:27). In the theological circles I travel in, it’s referred to as redemptive history, that moment when God entered into covenant relationship with mankind through Adam as our federal head. In other words, what we find in Genesis is the dawn of redemptive history.
Does that mark also the dawn of natural history, the origin of the natural world? Young-earth creationists would say it does, but they’re relying on a plain or straight-forward reading of an English text using modern categories of thought. So what happens when you interpret it literally using a robust historical-grammatical exegesis of the text in its original language and ancient cultural context? Walton showed us. Genesis 1 is not an account of material origins but of functional origins as God established the cosmos as sacred space (temple) for his presence and rule, creating the functions and assigning functionaries over a six-day period and resting on the seventh. (On this view, that seventh day is no longer a footnote to creation week but arguably the most important day.)
“I understand that and it makes sense,” someone might say, “but couldn’t Gensis 1 be about material origins as well?” Yes, it certainly could. But is it? That’s the question. Such a conclusion must be drawn from the text responsibly, not imposed on it because that’s a view with which we are most familiar. And Walton observes an important point: “Viewing Genesis 1 as an account of functional origins of the cosmos as temple does not in any way suggest or imply that God was uninvolved in material origins—it only contends that Genesis 1 is not that story.”
So, on my view of evolutionary creationism, which consolidates the theological work of Beale and the exegetical analyses of Walton, the dawn of natural history occurred several billion years ago (i.e., the “construction phase” of the cosmic temple) whereas the dawn of redemptive history reaches back to the garden around seven or eight thousand years ago (i.e., the “inauguration phase” of the cosmic temple). The days in Genesis 1 were normal 24-hour periods, Adam and Eve actually existed as real people, the events in the garden actually happened and it was only a few thousand years ago, etc. Also, the earth is over four billion years old, dinosaurs went extinct around 65 million years ago, descent with modification from a common ancestor is a thing, the universe is roughly 13 billion years old, etc. Redemptive history on the one hand, natural history on the other. Both are true. The key is realizing they are not the same thing. Natural history is disclosed through general revelation, the meaning and purpose of which is unveiled in redemptive history disclosed through special revelation.
5. Additional questions.
(a) Yes, I think that there is a discernible shift from Genesis 1–11 to Genesis 12–50, but I will leave that argument in more capable hands.
(b) As you can see, on the view which I presented here there is no need to question “the precise stories, names, and timelines in the primeval chapters of Genesis.” As it turns out, Genesis does factually report history—but it is redemptive history, just as we find in the gospels and the rest of the New Testament.
© I have very little interest in prophecy. It has something to do with my personal life and a church that obsessed over that stuff.
(d) I think that Satan will make use of pretty much anything in order to undermine the faith. He can even use young-earth creationism to turn people away. That doesn’t make the things he uses evil or suspect, it just means that he is desperate and seizing upon whatever he can. But he is ultimately irrelevant, for we worship a sovereign God who has every authority over him.
 John H. Walton, The Lost World of Genesis 1: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2009).
 Gregory K. Beale, The Temple and the Church’s Mission: A Biblical Theology of the Dwelling Place of God (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2004).
 Denis R. Alexander, Creation or Evolution: Do We Have to Choose?, 2nd ed. (Oxford: Monarch, 2014).
 K. Scott Oliphint, The Battle Belongs to the Lord: The Power of Scripture for Defending Our Faith (Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Publishing, 2004).