Many Christians however think the Bible can support an older Earth. Perhaps the ancient system of charting generations was different from today or maybe they only included significant families or individuals rather than complete family trees. If so, there’s no issue with dinosaurs existing billions of years ago.
There are many other things the Bible doesn’t mention - particularly in the creation accounts - that doesn’t mean they didn’t exist. Their exclusion may also prove that dinosaurs and animals never co-existed. Some think there are references to dinosaurs in the Bible, particularly in Job, (consided the oldest book in the Bible) which mentions a fearsome ‘Leviathan’ in chapter 41 and a ‘Behemoth’ in chapter 40 (whose tail looks similar to a brontosaurus or brachiosaurus).
Some Christians believe the world was created in seven literal days. According to Genesis, the first book of the Bible, God made animals and humans on the same day. This doesn’t allow for the 60 million year gap between dinosaurs and humans that palaeontologists (fossil experts) generally think occurred after dinosaurs became extinct. Christians who read Genesis in a more literal way might argue that dinosaurs never existed or maybe they simply existed at the same time as people. They might point to cave drawings of dinosaurs, which may imply that humans lived alongside them in order to be able to draw them.
There are many Christians who don’t think biblical creation accounts need to be read literally. They would look at their genre (type of writing) and argue that these parts of Genesis weren’t meant to be read as historical documents or scientific textbooks but are a poetic celebration of God’s handiwork in creation. Some Christians view the seven days in the creation accounts as seven periods of time, which could still allow for dinosaurs being created way before humans. There are also Christians who think the order of creation follows the order of evolution and therefore think God-centred evolution is compatible with the Bible.
Questions to ask:
- What’s your favourite dinosaur?
- Do you think God created the world?
- How do you think humanity came about?