Gospel Gazette Online
Vol. 15 No. 7 July 2013
Page 4

Editorial

Did Dinosaurs Really Exist?

Louis RushmoreYes, the fossil evidence for the existence of dinosaurs is overwhelming. Dinosaurs really did exist. In addition to abundant fossil remains to prove that dinosaurs once roamed the earth, the historical record also testifies to the former existence of what we call “dinosaurs.” The Bible is just one of the historical records that verify that dinosaurs once inhabited earth.

The word “dinosaur,” meaning “terrible lizard” was added to the English language in 1841, and so it is no wonder that the word “dinosaur” does not appear in English Bible translations such as the King James that predated the existence of the word “dinosaur.” However, the Bible does describe dinosaur-like creatures within its pages.

Job 40:15-24 introduces the “behemoth.” From verse 15, one learns: (1) This beast cohabited the planet with mankind. (2) “He eats grass like an ox” (NKJV). Verse 16 says “strength is in its hips, and his power is in his stomach muscles.” Verse 17 compares this creature’s tail to a cedar tree – one of the largest trees in girth (up to 52’) and length (up to 152’), a far different kind of tail from modern-day, large, land animals like the hippopotamus or the elephant. In addition, the behemoth had strong thighs. Verse 18 attributes to the behemoth “bones” like “beams of brass” and “ribs like bars of iron.” Verse 19 affirms the behemoth to be the most massive of all the creatures God created. Furthermore, this creature was such that only God could slay it. Whereas verse 20 notes that the behemoth was at home on the land (e.g., “mountains”), this creature was fearless in marshes and rivers, even at flood stage (see also verse 23). Verse 23 also identifies one of the places on earth where the behemoth lived – around the Jordan River. A form of the Hebrew word for “behemoth” occurs 190 times in the Old Testament and is variously translated as “beast” or “cattle”; some of those may very well also refer to what we call dinosaurs today.

A dinosaur-like sea creature (verses 1-2, 7, 31-32), the “leviathan,” appears in Job 41:1-34. The leviathan could not be domesticated or tamed (verse 4) and was unsuitable for a pet (verse 5). It was invincible (verse 9) to all weaponry of the ancient world (i.e., sword, spear, dart, javelin, arrows and slingstones, verses 26, 28), and the leviathan was fearless (verse 33). This creature evidently did not necessarily pursue humans naturally, but if approached by men, it would readily attack (verses 10). The leviathan was swift enough in water to make whitewater waves as it swam (verses 31-32).

Yet, the leviathan also came ashore, too (verse 30). He was a massive creature (verse 12) with natural armor including scales (verses 13-17). The sight of him as he raised himself up struck fear in warriors (verse 25). His destructive powers crushed “iron as straw and bronze as rotten wood” (verse 27). Whereas the behemoth was the largest creature God had made (Job 40:19), the leviathan was the fiercest creature on earth (Job 41:9-10, 33-34).

God’s description of the leviathan in the Bible provokes man’s imagination because nothing like it lives today. It had a noteworthy, powerful neck (verse 22). The leviathan’s teeth were no less alarming (verse 14). His belly was a remarkable breastplate useful for both defense and offense, leaving distinctive, pointed impressions in the mud wherever it had been (verse 30). This beast’s eyes shone as miniature suns (verse 18). The most astonishing description of the leviathan was that it breathed fire (verse 18-21)! Smoke rolled from its nostrils (verse 20), and the leviathan’s fiery breath set brush on fire (verse 20). Incidentally, several ancient civilizations’ historical annals record lizard-like creatures that breathed fire.

Another Hebrew word, “tannin” (singular) or “tannim” (plural), describes a dinosaur-like creature of the sea (Psalm 148:7). It appears 28 times in the Old Testament, and it has been translated sometimes as “sea monster” (Lamentations 4:3 KJV, Genesis 1:21; Psalm 74:13; 148:7 ASV), “sea creatures” (Genesis 1:21; Psalm 148:7, NKJV) “monster” (Jeremiah 51:34; Ezekiel 29:3; 32:2 NKJV; Isaiah 27:1; 51:9; Jeremiah 51:34; Ezekiel 29:3; 32:2) or “dragon” (Deuteronomy 32:33; Nehemiah 2:13; Job 30:29; Psalm 44:19; 74:13; 148:7; Isaiah 13:22; 34:13; 35:7; 43:20; 51:9; Jeremiah 9:11; 10:22; 14:6; 49:33; 51:34, 37; Ezekiel 29:3; Micah 1:8 KJV), among other references.

Human history aside from the Bible also acknowledges the existence of what we today call dinosaurs or dinosaur-like creatures. Following is a sampling.

Dinosaurs were created within the six days of creation (Exodus 20:11) and obviously coexisted with mankind until such time as they became extinct. Human history, scientific discoveries and the biblical record confirm that people and dinosaurs populated the earth at the same time. Not only so, but some of the references above pertain to drawings, carvings and pottery that depict dinosaurs, and which were made just hundreds of years ago or a thousand years or so ago. Atheistic evolutionists refuse to acknowledge historical and scientific evidence, but now you know the truth about dinosaurs.


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