What about dinosaurs?

Creation Answers Book, Chapter 19Click to view PDF


Creation Magazine Volume 46 Issue 2 Cover

Chapter 1Does God exist?

Chapter 2Six days? Really?

Chapter 3What about gap theories?

Chapter 4What about carbon dating?

Chapter 5How can we see distant stars in a young universe?

Chapter 6How did bad things come about?

Chapter 7What about similarities and other such arguments for evolution?

Chapter 8Who was Cain’s wife?

Chapter 9Were the ‘sons of God’ and/or the nephilim extraterrestrials?

Chapter 10Was the Flood global?

Chapter 11What about continental drift?

Chapter 12Noah’s Flood-what about all that water?

Chapter 13How did all the animals fit on Noah’s Ark?

Chapter 14How did freshwater and saltwater fish survive the Flood?

Chapter 15Where are all the human fossils?

Chapter 16What about ice ages?

Chapter 17How did animals get to Australia?

Chapter 18How did all the different ‘races’ arise (from Noah’s family)?

Chapter 19What about dinosaurs?

Chapter 20What should I do?

  • Was there an ‘age of dinosaurs’ long before people came on the scene?
  • What does the Bible say about dinosaurs?
  • What were the dragons of history?
  • What do dinosaur fossils tell us?
  • What happened to the dinosaurs?

We hear and see it everywhere. Via newspapers, radio broadcasts, television documentaries, museum displays, university courses, school textbooks, and even in picture books for toddlers, the message is unrelenting: ‘millions of years ago there was an “age of dinosaurs”, but they became extinct long before man appeared on this planet’.

However, a straightforward reading of the Bible contradicts this utterly. Dinosaurs were created by God alongside man (Genesis 1:24–31) only around 6,000 years ago, and as there was no death before Adam sinned (Genesis 2:16–17; 3:6), humans and dinosaurs once lived together, in recent history.

The basis of the conflict

As we saw in Chapter 1, the way you view the world—including the whole issue of dinosaurs—depends upon your starting assumptions.

A basic idea of evolutionary theory, as taught in science textbooks, is that humans have appeared ‘only’ in the last 100,000 years or so. Therefore, given that no-one was around before then to observe and record what happened, scientists can only reconstruct history (i.e. what they define as ‘pre-history’) on the basis of fossil evidence, and assumptions. This scenario posits that sedimentary rock layers around the world were deposited over a very long time—billions of years. Thus, looking at the ‘progression’ of organisms from the lowest (‘oldest’) layers to the uppermost (‘youngest’) layers provides the order of evolutionary appearance and extinction, over many millions of years.

In contrast, the Christian’s starting assumptions are (or ought to be) very different. For starters, Christians believe in a Creator, and that He has spoken through His prophets (Hebrews 1:1), for our benefit (2 Timothy 3:16). And Christians know (or ought to know) the biblical emphasis on eyewitness accounts (Deuteronomy 19:15; 2 Corinthians 13:1), without which we cannot know definitively what happened before we were born (Job 38:4, 21).

Secular/evolutionary paleontologists, biologists, and anthropologists are at an enormous disadvantage in trying to reconstruct history without reference to an eyewitness account. (See the section on experimental versus ‘historical’ science in Chapter 1.) Conversely, if the Bible’s claim to be an eyewitness account of history from the very beginning is true, then the dinosaur fossil evidence found around the world ought to make much better sense from the perspective of ‘young-earth’ biblical history than from the claimed long-age evolutionary ‘history’. And it does.

Lots and lots of dinosaur fossils!

Photo courtesy Films for Christ17214-fossil-graveyard
Dinosaur graveyards testify to catastrophic burial conditions, consistent with the Flood.

As discussed in Chapter 10, the Bible speaks of a cataclysmic global Flood around 4,500 years ago—such was its impact that Noah and his family and animal/bird ‘cargo’ remained on board for over a year. Multiple layers of water-borne sediments, now hardened into rock, right around the world, are powerful evidence of the geography-rearranging forces at work during that Flood. These sedimentary rock layers contain billions of fossils (see Chapter 15), with many of them so well-preserved that those creatures must have been buried quickly under loads of sediment—neither scavengers nor the ravages of oxygen-facilitated decay have left their mark.

Among those billions of fossils, researchers have found and documented many dinosaur1 fossils. (Occasionally one hears of people claiming that dinosaurs never existed—but such claims are completely untenable, given the abundant fossil evidence.) Dinosaur fossil ‘graveyards’ have been found at many places around the world.

One such ‘mass fossil graveyard’2 in Patagonia, South America, has yielded a great many dinosaur fossils. Some of the fossils are of quite large creatures indeed, such as the T. rex-like Giganotosaurus (Greek gigas [giant] and notos [south]), measuring up to 14 m (47 ft) long. Many small dinosaurs are found there, too. But whether big or small, the excellent preservation of these fossils is consistent with the animals having perished and been covered over during the Flood of Noah’s day. For example, one ‘family’ of six fossilized dinosaurs—one adult, two smaller adults, two juveniles and a ‘baby’—were found buried together, with no evidence of their having been attacked or scavenged by other animals.3 Secular paleontologists theorized that this group of dinosaurs therefore ‘may have perished in a flood’.4

Time and again, paleontologists speak of dinosaur fossil finds as having been formed ‘on the floor of an ancient lake or sea’ or ‘in an old riverbed’. When seven fossilized dinosaurs, all identified as being of one species, Mapusaurus roseae, were found in a single deposit in Patagonia, they “showed no sign of disease, so the animals were apparently victims of some catastrophic event.”5,6 It must, indeed, have been quite some catastrophic event to have suddenly buried a group of such large—up to 12.5 m (40 ft) long—monsters.

Similar fossil finds around the world are consistent with the global catastrophic Flood event that the Bible describes (Genesis 6–9, 1 Peter 3:20), yet secular paleontologists apparently can’t see it (2 Peter 3:5–6), despite encountering the evidence in their daily work. One such person is Montana State University paleontologist Jack Horner. He is very familiar with dinosaur fossil ‘graveyards’—on an expedition to Mongolia’s Gobi Desert he and his team set a new ‘record’ for dinosaur discovery—67 skeletons in one week!7 An expedition to the same area the previous year had yielded 30 skeletons.

And evidence of rapid burial is often unmistakeable. For example: from Oxfordshire, UK, sauropod footprints,8 which require rapid burial for preservation. From China’s Jiangxi province, an oviraptor dinosaur fossil with two eggs still visible in the body cavity—i.e. it died just before it was about to lay the eggs,9 and must therefore have been buried quickly, before the eggs could decay.

The Bible does talk about dinosaurs

At this point, some may object, ‘But the Bible doesn’t mention anything about dinosaurs!’ It’s true that the word ‘dinosaur’ does not appear in the Bible. But ‘dinosaur’ is a relatively modern word, coined by Sir Richard Owen in 1841. He derived it from the Greek words meaning ‘terrible lizard’ after seeing fossil bones of Iguanadon and Megalosaurus. It’s understandable that ‘dinosaur’ does not appear in English translations of the Bible, because the tradition of English translation was set in the 1500s and 1600s with the Geneva Bible and the King James Version. However, the Bible does tell us important information about dinosaurs:

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  • The original dinosaur kinds were made during Creation Week, around 6,000 years ago.
  • The land-based dinosaurs were created on Day 6 of Creation Week, along with man. If there were aquatic dinosaurs, they were created on Day 5, along with the swimming reptiles (like the plesiosaurs) and the flying reptiles (like the pterosaurs).
  • There was no suffering and death before Adam sinned—dinosaurs from the beginning lived alongside man and all the other created kinds.
  • The whole Creation (including dinosaurs) was cursed as a consequence of Adam’s sin, and has been ‘in bondage to decay’ (Romans 8:21) ever since.
  • All air-breathing vertebrate land animals (including dinosaurs) that were not aboard Noah’s Ark perished in the global Flood around 4,500 years ago. But they did not become extinct at that time because pairs of each kind were preserved on the Ark.
  • It was from the Ark’s landing site in (what is today known as) the Near East, or commonly called the Middle East (‘the mountains of Ararat’—Genesis 8:4) that the air-breathing land animals (including dinosaurs) began to repopulate the earth.
  • From the end of the Flood, the ‘fear and dread’ of man fell upon all the animals (including dinosaurs), coinciding with man being given permission to now eat meat (Genesis 9:2–4).

Do ‘dragons’ = dinosaurs?

Applying the above biblical framework to our thinking in relation to dinosaurs, then, raises this question: As man, post-Flood, spread out after the fiasco at Babel (Genesis 11), surely he would have (re-)encountered dinosaurs?

Indeed, there are strong indications of exactly that. From Europe, across Asia and into China, historical references to ‘dragons’ abound, with the described features of those creatures often matching scientists’ modern reconstructions of dinosaurs from fossil evidence.

Marie-Lan Nguyen | CC BY 3.0 | Wikimedia17214-saint-george
St George and the dragon, Venice, Italy, c. 1500

For example, from a chronicle of 1405, in England: “Close to the town of Bures, near Sudbury, there has lately appeared, to the great hurt of the countryside, a dragon, vast in body, with a crested head, teeth like a saw, and a tail extending to an enormous length. Having slaughtered the shepherd of a flock, it devoured many sheep.”10 Such features as ‘crested head’ and ‘tail extending to an enormous length’, are consistent with this ‘dragon’ being a dinosaur-like creature.

An Irish writer around AD 900 recorded an encounter with a large animal with thick legs and strong claws and described it as having ‘iron’ nails on its tail—could that have been a Stegosaurus?11

And brass engravings dating from the 1400s at Carlisle Cathedral in Britain depict creatures that any 21st-century child would instantly recognize as dinosaurs, along with depictions of various fish, a dog, a pig, a bird, and other familiar animals.12 How could the person engraving those depictions have known what dinosaurs looked like, given that he/she lived over three centuries before the fossil bones of such creatures were systematically dug up, described, and named? Surely the answer is clear: people knew what such dinosaurs looked like because those creatures were alive at that time, and were as familiar to people as fish, dogs, pigs, and birds.13

Photo Mark Harwood17214-bishop-bell-tomb
Brass engraving on the tomb of bishop Richard Bell, who died in 1496, Carlisle Cathedral, UK

Descriptions of ‘dragons’ have a remarkable consistency, stretching from Britain (the emblem on the flag of Wales is a dragon) across Europe and India and into China. Chinese pottery, embroidery, carvings, etc., are famous for being prominently adorned with images of dragons. In the traditional (complex) Chinese script, the character for ‘dragon’ (龍, lóng; simplified script 龙) is seen as pictographically representing the creature—the right part of the character being the spines and tail of a dragon. There are also many sayings in Chinese that connect dragons with still-living animals, such as tigers. The Chinese word for ‘dinosaur’ is 恐龍 / 恐龙 (kǒnglóng), literally ‘fearful dragon’.14

Traditional Chinese character for ‘dragon’

Furthermore, of the twelve symbols used in the Chinese lunar calendar cycle, eleven are real animals (pig, rat, rabbit, tiger, etc.), suggesting that the remaining one, the dragon, is equally real.

All of this is consistent with identifying dinosaurs with the dragons of history and as real animals that lived not too long ago. This contradicts the whole idea of an ‘age of dinosaurs’ millions of years before people existed, and further supports the biblical account of the real history of the world.

A dinosaur described in the Bible?

As well as possible oblique references in the Bible to creatures which may have been dinosaurs,15 there is a detailed description of an animal in the book of Job which defies ready categorization as any of the animals known to be living today.

Within a few hundred years of the Flood, God spoke to a man called Job, and reminded him of how great He was as Creator, by pointing to a particularly massive creature He had made:

Look now at the behemoth, which I made along with you; he eats grass like an ox. See now, his strength is in his hips, and his power is in his stomach muscles. He moves his tail like a cedar; the sinews of his thighs are tightly knit. His bones are like beams of bronze, his ribs like bars of iron. He is the first of the ways of God; only He who made him can bring near His sword.” (Job 40:15–19).

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Was ‘behemoth’, seen by Job, one of the big dinosaurs?

One difficulty facing Bible scholars is trying to identify just what this ‘behemoth’ could be. Obviously it was alive in Job’s day, otherwise God’s instruction would not have made sense. Some Bible translators, not being sure what the beast was, simply transliterated the Hebrew בּהמוֹת, behemoth. Others, noting the size and strength of the creature, and that it ranks first of the ways of God, thought it must be the largest land animal alive today, namely the elephant, or alternatively (noting its capacity to occupy streams/marshlands—vv. 21–23) the hippopotamus. This idea was indicated either in a footnote or, in some instances, in the translation itself.

However, besides the fact that the elephant and the hippo were not the largest land animals that God made (fossils show that certain dinosaurs completely dwarfed anything the size of an elephant), such an interpretation does not make sense, since the tail of a behemoth is compared to a cedar tree (v. 17). Neither the cord-like tail of an elephant nor the hippo’s tail in any way justify comparison with a cedar tree. But paleontologists’ reconstructions of Brachiosaurus, based on the fossils, look very much like God’s description of behemoth to Job.16

How could dinosaurs have fitted on the Ark?

Given the many different dinosaur species that have been identified, and the huge size of some of them (e.g. Seismosaurus, on the basis of fossil reconstructions, attained lengths of 45 metres (150 feet)), some people might wonder how Noah could have taken all the dinosaur kinds onto the Ark. However, when one considers the following, there is no problem.

Photos by Don Batten17214-apatosaurus-skull
Skulls given different genus names Apatosaurus (top) and Diplodocus (bottom) which are clearly the same biblical kind

1. Only around 55 dinosaur ‘kinds’

In Chapter 13, we discussed how Noah did not need to take all species (a notoriously flexible concept) on board the Ark, but only pairs of each created kind. The same principle applies to dinosaurs. So Noah’s Ark did not have to carry the 668 or so named species of dinosaurs; rather, just the representative ‘kinds’ (Genesis 6:20)—of which it has been estimated there were only 55.17

And although it’s the immense dinosaurs that capture public attention (and are given media prominence), most dinosaur kinds were actually a lot smaller—for example, Compsognathus was only as big as a chicken.

2. The Ark was huge

According to Genesis 6:14–16, the Ark was huge—nothing like the ‘bathtub’ caricature often portrayed by modern artists.18 It was more than large enough to carry the requisite number of animals.19 (See also Chapter 10.)

3. No need for fully grown dinosaurs on the Ark

Even considering the actual (voluminous) size of the Ark,20 dinosaurs as large as the huge fossil specimens that have been discovered would not likely have fitted through the Ark door. But this does not mean that those very large dinosaur kinds were not represented. Rather, juveniles could have easily been taken on board—and this makes more sense than taking ‘grandma and grandpa brachiosaur’21 onto the Ark, given the need for actively reproducing pairs after the Flood, necessary to repopulate the earth. Note that it was God who selected which pairs would represent each kind and brought them to Noah (Genesis 6:20)—Noah did not need to ‘round up’ the dinosaurs (and other animals and birds), in contrast to the taunts of some Bible skeptics.


Some might ask, ‘But some dinosaurs were huge—doesn’t that mean their “babies” were big, too?’ In fact, no. Lots of dinosaur eggs have been discovered at various places around the world, but the largest is about 50 cm (20 in) long. So, immediately after hatching out, the juveniles of even the largest dinosaurs were less than 1 metre tall (about 3 ft).

What about the possible problem of dinosaurs, taken onto the Ark as small juveniles, growing too big (during the subsequent year aboard the Ark) to go out of the door when it was time to disembark? Growth studies of dinosaur bones show that this would not have been a problem either (provided the juveniles were at the correct stage of growth when selected to go on board). Researchers who studied growth rings in dinosaur bones showed that dinosaurs had a type of ‘adolescent growth spurt’.22,23,24 For example, in the huge Apatosaurus, the spurt started at the age of about five years, when the dinosaur was only one tonne (bullock-sized). During the spurt, it grew at over five tonnes per year, then the growth levelled off at the age of 12–13, when it was about 25 tonnes. (See graph above.) Other dinosaurs such as the 1700 kg (3700 lb) Maiasaura and the much smaller 20 kg (44 lb) Syntarsus and Psittacosaurus had the same sigmoid (‘S’-shaped) growth pattern.

These studies suggest a means of fitting the animals on board. God could well have chosen specimens He knew would undergo their growth spurt as soon as they left the Ark. This would solve the common sceptical objections of fitting and feeding huge dinosaurs on the Ark. That is, the dinosaurs weren’t actually that huge while they were on board. The growth spurt just after leaving the Ark would also mean that they could quickly outgrow potential predators.

To summarize, Noah would have easily been able to fit all the dinosaur kinds on the Ark because:

  • most dinosaur kinds were relatively small
  • even the big dinosaur kinds were small before their teenage growth spurt
  • there were comparatively few kinds of dinosaur (likely around 50 or so) compared to the number of named ‘species’
  • the Ark was big enough!

Dinosaurian challenges to evolutionary theory

In Chapter 15, we saw how, according to an evolutionary long-age interpretation of the fossil record, many fossils are ‘out of place’. That is, they do not fit the supposed bottom-to-top progressive order of appearance expected by evolutionists.

‘Out-of-sequence’ fossils are a challenge to theories of dinosaur evolution, too. For example:

  • The fossilized remains of a small dinosaur (psittacosaur) have been found in the belly of a fossil mammal named Repenomamus robustus.25 This specimen, and another newly discovered large Repenomamus fossil, are a real surprise for evolutionists because evolutionary assumptions say that mammals living during the so-called ‘age of the dinosaurs’ had to be small to avoid the huge reptiles. While a surprise for evolutionists, it’s no shock to creationists—mammals, dinosaurs, and man originally lived at the same time.
  • The evolutionary idea that only tiny, unspecialized (‘primitive’) shrew-like mammals lived with dinosaurs was further challenged by the discovery of a fossil of a beaver-like mammal in Inner Mongolia ‘dated’ by evolutionists to 164 million years.26,27 Some of its soft tissues, such as its thick fur, were well preserved. It looks like an animal that could both swim and dig, which means that it was highly specialized—not a small and ‘primitive’ mouse-size mammal!
  • Dinosaur fossils are often found in rock strata containing few plant fossils, yet there must have been huge amounts of vegetation to feed the large herbivorous dinosaurs such as Brachiosaurus. However, from a creationist perspective, there’s no mystery. The dinosaur-bearing strata do not represent a buried ecosystem or dinosaurian ‘age’—rather, dinosaur-bearing strata are simply rocks that have hardened around dinosaurs buried during the Flood. One might expect that the mobility of the dinosaurs compared to the plants would mean that they were not buried together—the dinosaurs would try to escape the rising floodwaters, whereas the plants could not.
  • Evolutionary researchers who discovered the remains of at least five types of grasses in dinosaur coprolites (fossilized dung28) say “it was a complete shock”.29,30,31,32 It was a shock because according to the standard evolutionary line, based on a long-age fossil record ‘chronology’, grasses evolved around 55 million years ago, which would be 10 millions years after the extinction of the dinosaurs (supposedly) around 65 million years ago. But the discovery that dinosaurs ate grass left evolutionists with a dramatic grassy ‘time-travel’ conundrum: how could dinosaurs have eaten something that supposedly hadn’t yet evolved? It is interesting that the Bible speaks of the sauropod-like Behemoth eating grass like an ox (Job 40:15).
  • The popular evolutionary idea that dinosaurs were the ancestors of birds contradicts itself, as, according to their own dating, fossils of ‘bird-like dinos’ (the supposed precursors of birds) are millions of years younger than the famous fossil Archaeopteryx, which was a fully developed flying bird. Even fossils of the beaked bird Confuciusornis33 are older than its supposed ancestors.
  • The extinction of the dinosaurs is a great mystery for secular science. Little wonder, then, that it has so captured the attention of popular culture. Various evolutionary theories have been mooted as explanations for the demise of the dinosaurs, e.g. mammals appeared and ate dinosaur eggs; new narcotic plants evolved; and global cooling/warming. However, by far and away the most popular idea is that an asteroid impact was responsible. But that notion has insurmountable difficulties. For example, (evolutionary) extinction dates don’t correlate with (evolutionary) crater dates;34,35 and the famous iridium layer found in rocks worldwide—supposedly a key proof of meteor impact—is much less clearly defined than was once claimed.36

From a biblical perspective, there is no dinosaur extinction ‘mystery’—the sedimentary rock layers containing fossils are not a ‘record’ of evolution and extinction over a millions-of-years timeframe, but rather a legacy of burial in the global Flood (around 4,500 years ago) and its aftermath. All the kinds of land animals (including dinosaurs) and birds survived aboard the Ark, repopulating the earth afterwards. Since then, many creatures have gone extinct, not just dinosaurs, in an ongoing display of the Curse on creation. Just as with the dodo, it’s likely that some dinosaurs perished through human influence, e.g. because of being a direct threat to man’s safety or because of loss of habitat (to agriculture or urban encroachment).

A modern parallel can be seen in that the tiger, the rhino, and the elephant have either died out or are on the ‘endangered species’ list in many parts of South-East Asia through the ongoing post-Babel dispersion of man. Heroic accounts of brave young men in Indonesia slaying ‘rogue’ tigers and elephants bear a striking parallel with centuries-old stories of ‘St George and the Dragon’, Beowulf, etc., where the dragon-slayers were also protecting others.

Image by Steve Cardno17214-beowulf
Beowulf and the dragon: a story from Scandinavia

Some might wonder how people could kill some of the larger dinosaurs without modern weapons. But people killed whales that were larger than any dinosaur, from sailing boats, using team work and hand-launched harpoons. And this on the whales’ ‘home turf’. Hunters have used such things as fire, traps, and curare to capture/kill large animals.

The drying out of the continents after the Flood—all continents once had extensive inland seas—could also have been a factor in the demise of the dinosaurs. It seems that dinosaurs were like hippos, inhabiting areas with plenty of water (the Bible mentions that Behemoth frequented the river; Job 40:21–23), and the drying out of the land resulted in a contraction of areas suitable for them. The wax and wane of the post-Flood Ice Age (Chapter 16) would have also impacted dinosaur survival.

Thus dinosaur extinction is readily understandable from a biblical perspective.

Interestingly, according to an evolutionary interpretation of the fossil layers, lots of other organisms became extinct millions of years ago, e.g. the coelacanth (sometimes referred to as the ‘dinosaur fish’ because it was said to have become extinct around 65 million years ago) and the Wollemi pine (also known as the ‘dinosaur tree’ for the same reason). But evolutionists were surprised when these, and many other ‘living fossils’37 or ‘Lazarus taxa’ were found to be still living today. Such discoveries did not surprise creationists. Similarly, it would not be a surprise if someone happens to find a live dinosaur today, e.g. in the remote jungles of the Congo or Papua New Guinea.38 But for evolutionists, the shock would greatly exceed that experienced when the coelacanth and the Wollemi pine were discovered to be still living today.39

Dinosaur bones—not millions of years old!

Many dinosaur fossils are not completely mineralized—in fact, dinosaur bones with blood cells, hemoglobin, fragile proteins (e.g. osteocalcin, actin, tubulin), and soft tissue such as flexible ligaments and blood vessels have been found. And of special note: DNA and radiocarbon. This is enormously confronting for evolutionists, because how could such bones possibly be 65 million years old? As one of the researchers involved in the discovery of dinosaur blood cells, Dr Mary Schweitzer, said: “If you take a blood sample, and you stick it on a shelf, you have nothing recognizable in about a week. So why would there be anything left in dinosaurs?”40

Why indeed? Unless of course they haven’t been extinct for millions of years, and their remains were preserved quickly under catastrophic conditions a few thousand years ago, or even more recently. But so entrenched is the evolutionary paradigm in the scientific community, that it soon became known that Dr Schweitzer was having trouble getting her results published.

Photo by Mary Schweitzer17214-dino-blood-vessels
Photo by Mary Schweitzer17214-dino-blood-cells
A stretch? T. rex bone yielded flexible, branching vessels (left), some of which contained red blood cells (right). How could they be millions of years old?

“I had one reviewer tell me that he didn’t care what the data said, he knew that what I was finding wasn’t possible,” says Schweitzer. “I wrote back and said, ‘Well, what data would convince you?’ And he said, ‘None.’”

Schweitzer recounts how she noticed that a T. rex skeleton (from Hell Creek, Montana) had a distinctly cadaverous odour. When she mentioned this to long-time paleontologist Jack Horner (see earlier in this chapter), he said “Oh yeah, all Hell Creek bones smell.” But so ingrained is the notion among paleontologists that dinosaur bones must be millions of years old that the ‘smell of death’ didn’t even register with them—despite the evidence being right under their noses. Schweitzer herself does not seem able or willing to escape the long-age paradigm, despite her direct involvement in many of the discoveries, across two decades.41 She has tried to explain the longevity of the material by appealing to iron in hemoglobin as a preservative. However, the hemoglobin in the experiment was highly concentrated (very artificial), and cannot explain the range of features preserved. This is ‘grasping at straws’.42

Other evolutionists have attempted to ‘explain away’ many of the findings as contamination, knowing that measured rates of decomposition of the fragile proteins and DNA show these could not have lasted the presumed millions of years since dinosaur extinction. That, and the evolutionists’ unconcealed moves to stifle reporting of the radiocarbon result (carbon-14 decays so quickly that if the remains were even 100,000 years old, none should be detectable!), testify to an unwillingness to face up to evidence that challenges the long-age paradigm.43

Dinosaurs—a key witnessing tool for Christians

Given the evolutionists’ difficulty in facing up to such confronting (to them) evidence, you’d think that the church in general would be proclaiming it loudly in the quest to reach out to the many who think that evolution is true. (‘Evolution is true’ means the Bible is wrong in saying Christ is Creator, and therefore, by definition, there can be no salvation in Christ.) In the light of the Bible, the supposed dinosaur ‘mystery’ completely disappears.

Sadly, however, many Christians are not actively using dinosaurs as a witnessing tool, for a variety of reasons. For some, it is because they are unaware of just how powerful addressing the dinosaur issue can be when witnessing to a culture bombarded by evolutionary teaching about dinosaurs. Children in particular are being indoctrinated in evolution with its millions of years through captivating their imaginations using dinosaurs.

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For others, it is because they think the contradictions between ‘science’ and the Bible are solved through adopting one of the oft-taught ‘compromise’ positions, e.g. gap theory (which of course doesn’t solve anything—see Chapter 3). Such Christians can be gently ‘won over’ by pointing out examples of Curse-affected dinosaurs—e.g. fossilized dinosaurs that died from cancerous tumours similar to those that afflict people today,44,45 or that were cannibalized by their own kind46,47,48—then asking them the question, ‘Did this dinosaur die such a terrible death in the “very good” world before Adam sinned, or after he sinned?’ Of course, there was no cancer in the pre-Fall world, and God said that the animals (including dinosaurs) were to reproduce ‘after their kind’, not to eat their own kind!

There is no need for the church to be silent regarding dinosaurs. Nor is there any excuse, given the increasingly abundant creationist resource materials, such as this book, which can help equip Christians to boldly proclaim Christ, no matter how ‘evolutionized’ the culture. And if more and more Christians, thus equipped and emboldened, are ready to do just that, what a difference that could make—as we’ll see in Chapter 20.

Published: 21 May 2024

References and notes

  1. In popular culture, extinct flying reptiles such as the pterosaurs and aquatic (swimming) reptiles such as plesiosaurs are often called dinosaurs. However, scientists, despite some variation in the formal definition of ‘dinosaur’, generally exclude flying and swimming reptiles. Thus ‘true dinosaurs’ are described as being ‘chiefly terrestrial’. They are reptiles with column-like legs beneath the body, rather than having splayed-out legs like a crocodile or lizard. Return to text.
  2. Owen, J., for National Geographic News, 2006, Meat-eating dinosaur was bigger than T. rex, news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2006/04/0417_060417_large_dino.html. Return to text.
  3. Anon., Flood link to fossilized dino family, Creation 22(4):7, 2000; creation.com/dinofam. Return to text.
  4. Niiler, E., A new rex, Scientific American 282(5):30, 2000. Return to text.
  5. Owen, 2006. Return to text.
  6. Coria, R. and Currie, P., A new carcharodontosaurid (Dinosauria, Theropoda) from the Upper Cretaceous of Argentina, Geodiversitas 28(1):71–118, 2006. Return to text.
  7. Boswell, E., MSU, Mongolian paleontologists find 67 dinosaurs in one week, Montana State University News, 2006; montana.edu/news/4016. Return to text.
  8. Day, J.J. et al., Sauropod trackways, evolution, and behaviour, Science 296(5573):1659, 2002. Return to text.
  9. Sato, T. et al., A pair of shelled eggs inside a female dinosaur, Science 308(5720):375, 2005. Return to text.
  10. This and numerous other accounts of similar encounters between people and dinosaur-like creatures described as ‘dragons’ can be found in Cooper, B., After the Flood—The early post-Flood history of Europe traced back to Noah, New Wine Press, UK, pp. 130–161, 1995; creation.com/atf. See also, Nelson, V., Untold Secrets of Planet Earth: Dire Dragons, Untold Secrets of Planet Earth Publishing Company, Canada, 2011; creation.com/dire-dragons. Return to text.
  11. Taylor, P.S., The Great Dinosaur Mystery and the Bible, Chariot Victor Publishing, US, p. 43, 1989. Return to text.
  12. Bell, P., Bishop Bell’s brass behemoths! Creation 25(4):40–44, 2003; creation.com/bb. Return to text.
  13. There are many examples, such as a Mesopotamian cylinder seal with a clear depiction of a Tanystropheus dinosaur, and others: Statham, D., Mesopotamian monsters in Paris, Creation 34(1):38–41, 2012; creation.com/dino-art. Return to text.
  14. Batten, D., Crouching tiger, hidden dinosaur? Creation 23(4):56, 2001; creation.com/hidden-dragon. Return to text.
  15. In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word ןינת, tanniyn, appears some 15 times—some modern English translations translate it as ‘monster’, ‘serpent’, or ‘jackal’, while in the King James Bible the word ‘dragon’ is used. Tanniyn could refer, at least in some contexts, to large reptiles/dinosaurs. Return to text.
  16. Steel, A., Could Behemoth have been a dinosaur? Journal of Creation 15(2):42–45, 2001; creation.com/behemoth. Return to text.
  17. Paleontologists are beginning to see that there are many duplicate names for dinosaurs, so that the number of species is greatly inflated. See: Fangrad, R., Dracorex—the dinosaur that looks like a dragon, Creation 32(3):56; creation.com/dracorex. See also Sarfati, J., Refuting Compromise, Chapters 7–8, 2011; creation.com/rc. Return to text.
  18. Naval architects concluded that the Ark would have had a capacity of 15,000 tonnes and been stable in the roughest seas. See Hong, S.W. et al., Safety investigation of Noah’s Ark in a seaway, Journal of Creation 8(1):26–36, 1994; creation.com/arksafety. Return to text.
  19. Woodmorappe, J., Noah’s Ark—A Feasibility Study, Institute for Creation Research, US, 1996; creation.com/ark-feas. Return to text.
  20. Hong et al., 1994. Return to text.
  21. As reptiles have the potential to grow as long as they live, the largest fossil dinosaur specimens that have been discovered were probably older ones. Return to text.
  22. Erickson, G. et al., Dinosaurian growth patterns and rapid avian growth rates, Nature 412(6845):429–433, 2001. Return to text.
  23. Erickson, G. et al., Gigantism and comparative life-history parameters of tyrannosaurid dinosaurs, Nature 430(7001):772–775, 2004. Return to text.
  24. Sarfati, J., How did dinosaurs grow so big? Creation 28(1):44–47, 2005; creation.com/dinogrowth. Return to text.
  25. Weil, A., Living large in the Cretaceous, Nature 433(7022):116–117, 2005. Hu, Y. et al., Large Mesozoic mammals fed on young dinosaurs, Nature 433(7022):149–152, 2005. Return to text.
  26. Martin, T., Early mammalian evolutionary experiments, Science 311(5764):1109–1110, 2006. Return to text.
  27. Ji, Q. et al., A swimming mammaliaform from the Middle Jurassic and ecomorphological diversification of early mammals, Science 311(5764):1123–1127, 2006. Return to text.
  28. The fact that we find fossilized dung at all speaks of rapid burial in an oxygen-free environment—for how else could dung have been so preserved? Return to text.
  29. Prasad, V. et al., Dinosaur coprolites and the early evolution of grasses and grazers, Science 310(5751):1177–1180, 2005. Return to text.
  30. Piperno, D. and Sues, H.-D., Dinosaurs dined on grass, Science 310(5751):1126–1128, 2005. Return to text.
  31. Hecht, J., Dino droppings reveal prehistoric taste for grass, New Scientist 188(2527):7, 2005. Return to text.
  32. According to the researchers, the spherical coprolites (fossilized feces/dung), which measured up to 10 cm across, were probably created by titanosaurs, the most common type of dinosaur represented in the rock layer holding the coprolites. Perkins, S., Ancient grazers: Find adds grass to dinosaur menu, Science News Online, 2005, sciencenews.org/articles/20051119/fob1.asp. Return to text.
  33. Sarfati, J., New four-winged feathered dinosaur? 2003; creation.com/4wings. Return to text.
  34. The Geological Society of America, Far more than a meteor killed dinos, News Release 06-47, 2006; geosociety.org/news/pr/06-47.htm, available via web.archive.org. Return to text.
  35. AFP 2003, Dinos doomed even before impact: scientists; abc.net.au/science/articles/2003/07/15/902500.htm. Return to text.
  36. Many evolutionists agree with creationists that iridium enrichment can be caused by massive volcanism. This would certainly have been a feature of the Flood year, associated with the breaking up of the ‘fountains of the great deep’ (Genesis 7:11). See Sarfati, J., Did a meteor wipe out the dinosaurs?—What about the iridium layer? 2001; creation.com/iridium. Return to text.
  37. Scheven, J., ‘Living fossils’: liquidambar and coelacanth, Creation 15(4):45, 1993; creation.com/scheven. Return to text.
  38. Reports of sightings of dinosaur-like creatures in remote areas today periodically make their way into the news media, e.g. (1) ABC News Online, PNG hunts giant mystery creature, abc.net.au/news/2004-03-12/png-hunts-giant-mystery-creature/150454, 12 Mar 2004; (2) Catchpoole, D., Mokele-mbembe: a living dinosaur? Creation 21(4):24–25, 1999, creation.com/mokele; (3) A living dinosaur? Creation 23(1):56, 2000; creation.com/live-dino. Return to text.
  39. Anon., Sensational Australian tree … like ‘finding a live dinosaur’, Creation 17(2):13, 1995; creation.com/woll. Return to text.
  40. Yeoman, B., Schweitzer’s dangerous discovery, Discover 27(4):37–41, 77, 2006. Return to text.
  41. Catchpoole, D., Double-decade dinosaur disquiet, Creation 36(1):12–14, 2014; creation.com/dino-disquiet (a summary of the discoveries). Return to text.
  42. Smith, C., Dinosaur soft tissue: In seeming desperation, evolutionists turn to iron to preserve the idea of millions of years; creation.com/dinosaur-soft-tissue, 28 January 2014. Return to text.
  43. For more on this, including a detailed listing of all of the discoveries since 1993, see: Wieland, C., Radiocarbon in dino bones—International conference result censored; creation.com/c14-dinos, 22 January 2013. Return to text.
  44. Pickrell, J., First dinosaur brain tumor found, experts suggest, National Geographic News, 24 November 2003; news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2003/11/1124_031124_dinocancer.html. Return to text.
  45. Wieland, C., First-ever dinosaur brain tumour found, Creation 26(2):21, 2004; creation.com/dinotumour. Return to text.
  46. Pilcher, H.R., Dinosaurs ate each other, Nature Science Update, 2003; nature.com/nsu/030331/030331-7.html. Return to text.
  47. Rogers, R.R. et al., Cannibalism in the Madagascan dinosaur Majungatholus atopus, Nature 422(6931):515–518, 2003. Return to text.
  48. Catchpoole, D., Grotesque dinosaur cannibals! Creation 26(4):34–35, 2004; creation.com/grotesque. Return to text.

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