I’ve been trying to make my way through this entire thread so I’m all caught up and can respond to you, but with a hundred posts still to go, I’m going to daringly start replying without a full understanding of the current state of the debate.
Your question seems clear and reasonable, and I have a few thoughts which may be of use to you although I present them as options for thought rather than items of personal faith to me (I’m not Christian, just trying to gain a deeper understanding of those who are).
First, it is not the case that the traditional interpretation of what the Bible says is unchanging. In the Middle Ages it was assumed that Genesis’s “Let the earth/waters bring forth” allowed for spontaneous generation of all sorts of life: maggots from meat, mice from the mud of the Nile, etc. Biblical interpretation allowed for this as it was the common scientific belief of the day, and it was only relatively recently that it was disproved conclusively by Pasteur and others. Theologians barely had time to adjust to this shake-up before Darwin was shaking it all up again. I think a lot of feeling on the issue comes from the history of how scientists and theologians had just about concluded that animals did not spontaneously arise (the creatio continua argument was likely referenced here) or form from other animals (tapeworms forming from intestines) when Darwin said, well, actually…
Which brings us to the question, what exactly does the Bible mean by ‘kind?’ Does it imply ‘fixity of species?’ Why or why not? Does it loosely translate to species or genus, or is that too specific an interpretation and really it just means God created all sorts of plants and animals? (I can cite at least one article on this if you are interested.) What do we make of His repeated instructions to let the land or waters bring forth life? Genesis definitely sees no conflict between these instructions and a description of God creating.
Did God create Adam from nothing, or form him from pre-existing material? It says Adam was formed from the earth, or soil, or clay. Does that mean God literally molded him with literal fingers? Does God have literal fingers? What else could it mean?
It’s very interesting to me that Genesis 2 is set very distinctly in an agricultural setting. This places it, to me, significantly after the beginning of the human race (Gen 1:26) but in a time of great significance and change in our condition. Was there a right way and a wrong way to adopt agriculture, begin to live in cities, and begin our religious understanding and interrelationships? When we started talking about and passing along opinions on capital letters Good and Evil?
These are the thoughts which have occurred to me so far, reading this thread: I’m sure I will think of others as I continue!