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THE BIBLE IS RIGHT!
About Dinosaurs and Evolution!
By James Edward Gilmer
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2013 James Edward Gilmer, Ph.D.
All rights reserved.
Biblical Evidence of Our Coexistence with Dinosaurs
To facilitate our discussions on dinosaurs in the Bible, I would first like to clear away another blind spot generated by evolutionists, this time regarding the Bible's literal accuracy. Evolutionists dismiss Biblical stories about dinosaurs not only by using the bogus claim that dinosaurs became extinct before humans appeared on earth, but also by arguing that any dinosaurs we think we see in the Bible are simply metaphors. They say further that the entire Bible is nothing more than fictional literature composed of metaphors and allegories that teach spiritual and moral lessons. But, as usual, evolutionists are dead wrong.
Yes, the Bible does use parables and other allegorical stories to teach spiritual and moral lessons. But, as we will discuss in more detail a little later, those allegories are constructed within a framework of concrete reality. And I assure you that the verses on dinosaurs are not fictitious or metaphorical, but completely concrete and fully factual. But to properly set the stage for our discussions on the factual and concrete reality of dinosaurs in the Bible, let's first examine a few verifiable examples of the Bible's factual and concrete reality. Part of that reality can be seen in the Bible's historical and scientific accuracy:
Historical Facts in the Bible
The Hittites Were Real
Most historians dismissed Biblical references to a people called Hittites as fiction until relatively recently. This is because verses such as Genesis 15:20, Exodus 3:8, Deuteronomy 20:17, the 11th and 12th chapters of 2nd Samuel and many others that described Hittites as real had no corroboration from any records outside the Bible and were, therefore, considered untrue.
In 1884, however, tablets were discovered in the ancient Assyrian colony of Karum Kanesh which revealed trade between Assyrians and Hittites. In 1906, the capital of the Hittite empire, Boghazhoy, was excavated in Turkey. Figure 1.1 shows the Lion Gate at Hittite capital, Boghazhoy.
Ancient Egyptians Grew Grapes
Genesis 40:9 indicates that ancient Egyptians grew grapes while ancient historians insisted that they did not. Recently discovered art work on the walls of Egyptian tombs showing the growth and harvesting of grapes, however, verified the Biblical account. Figure 1.2, for example, is a relief in the tomb of Userhet showing grapes being cultivated.
Making Clay Bricks
Exodus 1:14 says that Israelites were forced to make bricks for the cities of Raamses and Pithom using clay after the straw was taken away. This story was met with extreme criticism for most of the last two millennia. Around the beginning of the 20th century, however, archaeologists discovered the city of Pihom and clay bricks made with no straw, thus confirming the Biblical story.
The Bible Was Right About Jericho
Joshua 6:20 tells us that the wall of Jericho fell after Israelites had marched around it for the seventh time on the seventh day of their siege. Excavations since 1929 have revealed that the wall really did fall with no signs of outside physical pressure such as battering rams. Verse 24 indicates that Joshua's men burned the city. Excavated ruins show clear signs of having been burned.
Joshua 2:15 describes the prostitute Rahab's house as resting on the city wall. This sounded far-fetched and highly infeasible until excavations in the 1930s showed that the city had a huge double wall, each section 12 feet thick, and that houses like Rahab's were indeed built across them. Figure 1.3 shows ruins of ancient Jericho.
King Sargon Lived
Isaiah 20:1 referred to an ancient king of Assyria called Sargon (now called Sargon II, because Sargon of Akkad had lived much earlier). Until the 19th century, he was considered fictitious, because no other record or document even mentioned him. In the mid-19th century, however, excavations at the ruins of his palace in Khorsabad confirmed his existence. In addition, tablets at the excavation site confirmed the Biblical account that Sargon (figure 1.4 on right) had sent his general, Tartan, to conquer the Philistine city of Ashdod.
Babylon Did Capture Judah
Second Kings 25 tells us that King Nebuchadnezzar's (actually Nebuchadnezzar II) forces conquered Judah and forced them into servitude in Babylon. Until the early 20th century, critics dismissed this account as false due to lack of corroboration elsewhere. In the 1930s, excavations outside Jerusalem revealed the ruins of the ancient city of Lachish, which is mentioned in the Bible as one of the cities besieged by the Babylonians. According to Wayne Jackson (2003) pottery inscriptions at the site depicted Lachish's futile struggle against its conquerors.
The Pool of Siloam Was There
The first few verses of the 9th chapter of the New Testament book of John relates the story of Jesus healing a man who had been blind from birth. He did so by spitting on soil, putting the clay on the man's eyes and then telling him to wash it off in the Pool of Siloam.
Until recently, critics had said that there was no Pool of Siloam and that John was just making an allegorical point with the story. In the Fall of 2004, however, while doing sewage digs, workers uncovered what was quickly recognized by local archaeologists as the Pool of Siloam, as seen in figure 1.5. Subsequent excavations confirmed this.
Lucius Sergius Paulus Was Proconsul
Act 13:6-13 tells us that Sergius Paulus was Proconsul of Cyprus (under Claudius, 1st century A.D.). It was generally believed that the Bible was wrong and that Paulus was a proprietor instead of proconsul.
According to Jim Sasser, the recent discovery of coins in Cyprus bearing the inscription, "Paulus the Proconsul," apparently confirms the Bible's account.
We could continue such examples of the Bible's historical accuracy, but I am sure I have provided enough to make my point. Just to doubly ensure that we are more receptive to the idea that the verses on dinosaurs are factual, however, let's briefly look at one final area of factual information in the Bible—its scientific accuracy.
Scientific Facts in the Bible
I would wager that most people consider it oxymoronic to use the terms Bible and science together, because the two words are normally used in contexts that would seem to make them mutually exclusive. But just as we have seen that the Bible is historically accurate without being a history document per se, we will also shortly see that, although the Bible was not written with science in mind, its references to the world around us are very often consistent with scientific facts that were not known during Biblical times:
In Genesis 15: 5, God tells Abram that the stars in heaven are innumerable. In Genesis 22:17 and Hebrews 11:12, the Bible points out that the number of stars in heaven and the number of grains of sand on earth are both innumerably large.
We know that now, but we did not always know it. As recently as the 16th century, many scientists believed we could number the stars and actually estimated them to be in the hundreds! It was well after Galileo invented the telescope that we began to realize how enormous the number of stars really is.
Now we know that there are over 100 billion stars in our galaxy alone and at least that many in each of over 100 billion other galaxies!
A Planet Floating in Space
Job 26:7 says that God "hangs the world upon nothing." While we now know that gravity affects the movement of the earth, we also know, unlike most of our ancestors that the earth is not held in place by Atlas (ancient Greek Titan) or any other physical restraints, but, in a very real sense, is, indeed hanging on nothing.
The Earth is Round: Isaiah 40:22 tells us that the earth is round: "It is he who sits above the circle of the earth ..." This is the first mention anywhere in human history that the world is round. We did not scientifically know the earth was spherical, however, until just a few hundred years ago.
How the Earth Rotates
In Job 38:12-15, God asks Job "Have you ever commanded the morning since your days and caused the sunrise to know his place; that it might take hold of the ends of the earth, that the wicked might be shaken out of it? The earth changes like clay under a seal ..." Here, 'the wicked' is an allusion to darkness in the symbolic sense of the word. The sunrise thus replaces the darkness in a rotation (change) similar to the way a potter rotates his clay.
The Second Law of Thermodynamics
This law of nature, which Albert Einstein called the most provable of all scientific laws, basically states that all systems in the physical universe will eventually degenerate into chaos or disorder. This includes the earth and all other celestial bodies. Our scientists first observed this theory in the 19th century, thousands of years after the Bible mentions it: "... For the heavens will vanish away like smoke, the earth will grow old like a garment ... (Isaiah 51:6)".
The Sea Has Springs
Only since 1977 has our technology allowed us to probe the ocean floor to verify that springs (also known as hydrothermal vents) exit there. And yet, in Job 38:16 God asks "Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea or walked in the recesses of the deep?" Figure 1.8 shows a "black smoker."
The Water Cycle
The Bible indicates in various verses that water rises by evaporation, forms clouds and falls again as rain in a continuous hydrologic (water) cycle. For example, in Job 36:27-29 it says: "He turns the waters into small droplets and draws them up into clouds and forms rain with it." Psalm 135:7 and Jeremiah 10:13 say virtually the same thing. Again, the process was certainly not known in those days.
How the Winds Blow
Ecclesiastes 1:6 points out that the "wind blows to the south and goes round to the north; round and round goes the wind, and on its circuits with wind returns." Science verified these facts at a much later date.
The Need for Sterilization
The Bible has many references to the need for proper sterilization and quarantine to prevent diseases. For example, Leviticus 15:13 says: "And when he that has an issue is cleansed of his issue he shall number to himself seven days after his cleansing, and wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in running water, and shall be clean."
Although we now know that running water sanitizes better than basin water, doctors as recently as the American Civil War, rarely washed their hands or instruments after surgery. When they did it was in water basins. Louis Pasteur's late 19th century experiments proved the Germ Theory of Disease and led to improved sanitary standards that resulted in an enormous drop in the mortality rate. Again, these core principles of sanitation were being practiced by the Israelites thousands of years earlier.
Circumcision on the 8th Day
Genesis 17:12 called for males to be circumcised on the 8th day. According to David Skjaerlund, medical science has only recently discovered that the blood-clotting element prothrombin is above 100% only on the 8th day of life. This is not a coincidence.
Earth's Geographical Center?
Ezekiel 5:5 and 38:12 indicate that Jerusalem is situated at the center of the world. Computer analysis recently placed Jerusalem, in fact, very nearly at the earth's geographical center. More precise mapping of the earth's land masses could very well place it squarely on the center mark.
Even Metaphors Are Based on Concrete Reality
Now that we have established that the Bible is not only a compilation of books containing fictional narratives and extended metaphors, but also one containing verifiable historical and scientific facts, let's underscore another fact that we mentioned earlier—Even the Bible's metaphors are based on concrete reality. Yes, the Bible does mention certain things that we cannot yet verify such as angels and Heaven (although some of us have personally experienced both). But all the 'earthly' things mentioned in the Bible; that is, the physical places, events, people, animals, etc., are all verifiably real, even within allegorical stories such as parables.
Many verses, for example, such as Job 38:12-15, use real proven facts (rotating earth) to build metaphors to make figurative points (wickedness is equated with darkness). Fictional parables like the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32) involve real kinds of people (a father and his two sons), real types of animals (pigs, a calf) and real types of behavior (wasteful living, forgiveness). Even in the highly symbolic Book of Revelations, John describes the creatures he sees in his visions by comparing them to real animals like lions, lambs, and eagles (Revelation 4:7). His description of dragons as serpentine creatures (Revelation 12:10) matches one of the descriptions of the very real dragons that we discuss in Chapter 6.
Now that we have ascertained that Biblical stories are based on verifiable facts and concrete reality both in literal and metaphorical situations, let's now turn our attention to the Bible's concrete facts about dinosaurs.
Dinosaurs in the Bible
As we discussed above, it is clear that the physical things mentioned in the Bible can be verified as real. This includes people, places, and animals. With this in mind, let's now turn our attention to animals in the Bible that happen to be what we call dinosaurs. First up—the Behemoth:
In Job 40:15-24, the Bible describes a large animal that is an example of God's great works:
15) Look at the behemoth that I have made along with you; he eats grass like an ox.
16) Consider the strength in his loins and the power in his belly.
17) His tail stretches out like a cedar; the sinews of his thighs are interwoven.
18) His body is like a frame of enormous brass pipes; his bones are like iron bars.
19) He is a prime example of the great works of God; He who made him and who alone can approach him with a sword.
20) Surely the mountains bear plants for him to eat, and all the wild animals play there.
21) He lies under the lotus trees and in the covert of reeds and marshes.
22) The lotus trees cover him with their shade. The willow trees by the stream surround him.
23) You will see that if the river becomes turbulent, he will not be alarmed. He will be confident even if the Jordan rushes into his mouth.
24) Can anyone capture him by direct confrontation and puncture his nose with snares?
What Behemoth Was Not
So that we will have no lingering questions about Behemoth's identity when we discuss why it was a dinosaur, let's first eliminate other translations of the term 'behemoth' that we may have seen or heard:
Hippopotamus or Other Animals?
Most Bible scholars and dictionaries will translate behemoth as hippopotamus, because they believe the hippo matches the behemoth's description. Others will occasionally translate it as ox, elephant or crocodile, because, in their opinion, these other animals match behemoth's description.
Excerpted from THE BIBLE IS RIGHT! by James Edward Gilmer. Copyright © 2013 James Edward Gilmer, Ph.D.. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse.
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