I am a student that attends a Christian school. This is probably a very common question, but I was wondering how dinosaurs fit into faith. How can the fossil record and the Biblical timeline fit?
If by biblical timeline you mean “the earth was created 6,000 years ago and all life on earth was destroyed in a global flood in 2349 BC” the short answer is that the fossil record doesn’t fit.
That is why many Christians think that the early chapters of the Bible should be interpreted as something other than a literal historical account of the beginning of time. Christians who accept the earth is ancient and dinosaurs died out because of an asteroid impact 65 million years ago (the scientific consensus) think that the creation story in Genesis is teaching theological truths about God and his relationship to creation and humanity, not dating methods for earth science and geology.
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Thank you for responding! I am relatively new to Biologos, so this was really helpful.
The first 11 chapters of Genesis are not literal history.
That is clear from the fact that there are two creation stories with different orders and methods of creation.
The first is Genesis 1.1-2.4a. It has the order of creation as plants, animals, man and woman. The method of creation is God made decrees, often telling the earth to bring forth life.
The second creation story begins in Genesis 2.4b. It has the order of creation as man, plants, animals, and woman. God creates with His hands.
The Bible itself makes it clear that we are not to read the early chapters of Genesis as literal history.
Our faith is not based on Genesis being a historical document. It is based on the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ.
By the way, you might want to look at the story of a notable Christian paleontologist, Dr. Mary Schweitzer. She went through the dilemma perceived differences between the evidence that God has given us in nature and a literal reading of scripture.
As of dinosaurs themselves in the Bible they are absent. But, in terms of God’s general rule/role in creation we can praise Him for His creation of such wonderful creatures as the Psalms give good prayers for giving praise to God for the mere making/blessing of creation. All things fit into God’s plan for creation and somewhere/how dinosaurs fit into that wonderful plan of creation in a way we may not understand.
Thank you for the quick explanation! I will definitely look into the story of the Christian paleontologist you mentioned.
Thank you for responding as well! I absolutely agree, that we may not be able to fully understand God’s wonderful plan of creation.
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