DINOSAURS ARE NOT MILLIONS OF YEARS OLD

It is hard to imagine the Bible speaking about a creature that we have been taught all our lives as having “ruled the Earth” millions of years ago.  However, before we examine what the Bible explicitly says about dinosaurs, we must examine the creation record as proclaimed in the inspired Word of God.

First, the Bible makes declarations in the Old Testament that leave no doubt that every creature was created by God.  Genesis 1:1 tells us that God “created the heaven and the earth.”  Further, verse 25 tells us that He “made the beast of the earth after his kind…and everything that creepeth on the earth after his kind.”  Not only was God responsible for creating the Earth and all its inhabitants, but, more specifically, He is directly responsible for the beasts of, and animals which creep upon, the earth.

Next, the New Testament record is equally adamant about His role in creation.  In Acts 4:24, God is praised for making “heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is.”  This assertion of scripture is repeated three more times in the book of Acts (7:50, 14:15, and 17:24).  The gospel of John, itself, preaches to us that “all things were made by Him, and without Him was not anything made” (1:3).

Many theologians over the centuries have endeavored to put a date on the creation and the age of the Earth.  They have perused various Biblical dates and genealogies to calculate the approximate time of when God would have completed His created work.  The range varies from 6,000 to around 10,000 years ago.  Even further evidence of a “young earth” (thousands of years old) as opposed to an “old earth” (billions of years old) are found in scientific data.  Phenomena such as the recession of the moon, the decay of the Earth’s magnetic field, polystrate fossils, and the lack of salt in the sea all point to a young earth as opposed to an old earth.  There is other recent scientific evidence relating to the age of dinosaur fossils being recent as opposed to ancient, such as the discovery of soft marrow, viable red blood cells and stretchable blood vessels in the femur of a Tyrannosaurus Rex.

All this evidence points to God as the creator of an earth that was created no more than 10,000 years ago.  And if God did create all things, as Scripture demands, then surely He had to create the dinosaurs.  And if He created the dinosaurs, then surely He had to create them thousands of years ago, not millions of years ago.

THE BEHEMOTH

The creature described in Job 40:15-24 is certainly not a one that any of us have ever seen.  But first, note that God asks Job to “consider behemoth which I made with thee” (v.15).  God is asking Job to stop and take a look at, or at least think about, a creature with which he was familiar.  And God also took the effort to declare behemoth a creature made on day six of creation when He said “which I made with thee.”

Behemoth “eats grass like an ox” (v. 15) and “he drinketh up a river” (v. 23), indicating that this land-dweller would be a vegetarian, and that he requires a lot of water to survive.  If he drinks a great quantity of water, it is probably safe to assume that he would also require a lot of food: “the mountains bring him forth food” (v. 20).  This would be consistent with v. 19, which says this creature is the “chief of the ways of God,” or, most likely, the largest land creature that God made.

Note also that there is further description of behemoth that indicates that this was a great creature.  There is “strength in his loins” (v. 16) and its bones are “as strong pieces of brass” and like “bars of iron” (v. 18).  We are also told that “he moveth his tail like a cedar” (v. 17).  This last description is significant, as many scholars interpret “behemoth” to be an elephant or a hippopotamus.  Neither of these creatures has a tail matching the description of verse 17.  Further, the usually conservative Vine’s Expository Dictionary calls the identification of behemoth as an elephant or a hippopotamus “patently absurd.”  So this must be an animal that defies any current known zoological entries.

The description of this creature is as one of the largest, strongest land animals in God’s creative repertoire, and that this vegetarian ate large quantities of food and drank huge quantities of water.  Along with the distinctive description of its tail, this creature could very well have been a brachiosaurus, if not some yet undiscovered dinosaur.

What an amazing revelation from scripture!

THE LEVIATHAN

In Job 41, God once again talks about a creature with which Job must have been familiar.  And what an introduction God makes!  This is obviously a sea dweller (v. 31 and 32) that was the most fearsome creature that God formed.  God asks Job a series of rhetorical questions to reveal with what kind of creature we are dealing.  “Canst thou put a hook in his nose?”  “Will he speak soft words to thee?”  “Wilt thou play with him as with a bird?”  “Canst thou fill his skin with barbed irons?”  Undoubtedly, the leviathan was a creature that, like no other monster, struck immediate fear in the hearts of men.

Some scholars have interpreted “leviathan” to be a crocodile, but surely a crocodile fails to fit the description of Job 41.  The crocodile is not on the same scale as the leviathan on the fright meter, and besides, the leviathan was a sea dweller, while the crocodile is not.  Once again, the Vine’s Expository Dictionary asserts that identifying the leviathan as a crocodile “absurd.”

The leviathan has fearsome teeth (v. 14), a thick, scaly hide (v. 15-17), and weapons such as swords and spears are useless (vv. 7 and 26-30).  The scripture heralds his terrible presence when it says “upon earth there is not his like, who is made without fear” (v. 33).  This sea-monster was a magnificent creature, indeed.

However, we are also introduced to an element that is once again foreign to us.  Leviathan apparently had another, more horrific, trait.  Consider verses 19-21:  “Out of his mouth go burning lamps, and sparks of fire leap out. Out of his nostrils goeth smoke, as out of a seething pot or caldron. His breath kindleth coals, and a flame goeth out of his mouth.”  This absolutely must tell us that leviathan was able to breathe fire!

This concept may seem more fiction rather than fact.  However, do not forget that lightning bugs and some beetles have a form of combustion internally.  According to some scientific theories, all that would keep a creature from being able to convert the internal combustion of the insects mentioned earlier is a store of oxygen and a vehicle to spray the fire.  Such ideas certainly draw on the images of fire breathing dragons of old.  For more on this discussion refer to the section “Dinosaurs in recorded history.”

FLYING REPTILES

We have discussed and identified the Bible’s description of dinosaurs of the land and dinosaurs of the sea.  What about dinosaurs of the air?

Isaiah 30:6 says, “The burden of the beasts of the south: into the land of trouble and anguish, from whence come the young and old lion, the viper and fiery flying serpent, they will carry their riches upon the shoulders of young asses, and their treasures upon the bunches of camels, to a people that shall not profit them.”  In this list of animals is the “fiery flying serpent.”  One oddity is that it is called fiery, which could mean that it is mean, poisonous or breathes fire, as discussed in the previous section.  But pay attention to the fact that this creature is grouped with four known, actual creatures.  Some may wish to dismiss the fiery flying serpent as a creature of fantasy, but why group a fantastic animal with four other animals.

This creature conjures up images from science books of the pterodactyl and similar creatures.  Considering such is likely true, then the Bible completes a trifecta of dinosaur creatures assumed to be “prehistoric.”  Interesting evidence, since the Mosaic Law required the testimony of two or three witnesses to prove a point in a hearing!

DINOSAURS IN RECORDED HISTORY

In 1841, Sir Richard Owen discovered the fossilized remains of Iguanodon and Megalosaurus, and coined the name “dinosaur,” which means “terrible lizard” in the Greek.  This ushered in the age of discovery when we would find thousands of fossils in various places around the world.  Ever since, dinosaurs have captured our imagination.

But is it possible that mankind has known about dinosaurs all along, just under a different term?   Knowing that the word “dinosaur” did not come into our language until the 19th century, what were these beasts called before that?

It is known that dragons have been regarded as fictional fantasies and legends for centuries, and they have captured the imagination of mankind for decades.  It is interesting to note that the ancient Chinese, who shut out the rest of the known world for thousands of years, have a rich legacy of dragon stories and legends.  In fact, the Chinese lunar calendar cycle includes the dragon with 11 other real animals, such as the pig, rat, rabbit and monkey, suggesting that the dragon is also real.

The ancient Babylonians, who would have had no contact with ancient China, likewise, has a god, Marduk, whose pet was a dragon.  Around 900 AD, an Irish writer described an encounter with a large animal that had thick legs, strong claws and iron nails on its tail (like a stegosaurus). There is even the recorded English account of a dragon from 1405, describing the dragon as “vast in body, with a crested head, teeth like a saw, and a tail extending to an enormous length.”  This description vividly matches the images of the Chinese and Babylonian dragons.  Such features not only match one another, but are drastically consistent with a dragon being a dinosaur-like creature.

Not only is the dragon recorded in legends and literature, but various art mediums depict a dragon that matches not only one another, but they match dinosaurs found in science books.  There are various paintings, drawings, pottery and engravings from ancient China, ancient Babylon, and India that abound with pictures of dragons with features often matching scientists’ modern reconstructions of dinosaurs from fossil evidence.

There are various cave drawings and even brass engravings from Carlisle Cathedral in England dating to the 15th century that depict animals that any 21st century child would recognize as a dinosaur.  The brass engraving from England also has depictions of fish, pigs, birds and dogs.  This begs us to ask this question:  how would the artist know what dragons look like, given that the artist made these engravings over 400 years before the first fossils were discovered?

All of the evidence presented in this section should at the very least demand strong consideration, if not prove, that before dinosaurs were called “dinosaurs,” they were referred to as “dragons.”  And when you consider that the English word “dragon” is found in the Bible 36 times, it must be probable, if not absolutely true, and our “dinosaurs,” the “dragons” of ancient history, are given a prominent place in God’s zoological order.

CONCLUSION

The Bible declares in the Old Testament and the New Testament that God created everything.  And if our Earth is relatively young, then dinosaurs were made on the literal sixth day of creation, not millions of years ago.  Never forget that the Bible is not silent about dinosaurs.  From its descriptions of behemoth, leviathan and the fiery flying serpents to the record of dragons, God’s Word has been telling us about dinosaurs long before the fossil discoveries of 1841.

ADDED NOTE

I am providing a link from Creation Ministries International that explains more details about the age of the earth.  Click here to read this online article.


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