Monday, August 6, 2012

Dinosaurs in the Bible? Dragons? Youth Bible Study Lesson

Brief: The Bible includes descriptions of dragons and dinosaurs.

Needed: Dinosaur and Dragon Legends quiz (student sheet)

We’ve been looking at Genesis 1 and the record of how God created the world. We talked about how God didn’t create every species of plant and animal. He made the kinds of plants and animals. Now, let’s talk about some of those specific kinds of animals.

Scripture: Genesis 1:20-25; Job 40:15-24; Job 41

Genesis 1:20-25:  And God said, "Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky." 21 So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living and moving thing with which the water teems, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 God blessed them and said, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth." 23 And there was evening, and there was morning—the fifth day.

 24 And God said, "Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: livestock, creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind." And it was so. 25 God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.

What about the dinosaurs? Does the Bible talk about dinosaurs? Were the dinosaurs one of the things that God created?

Answers to Student Sheet Quiz Questions
1..Dinosaurs lived from about 6’000 to 4.5 thousand years ago. The Bible says that the world was created about 6’000 years ago and that the Flood happened about 4.5 thousand years ago.

2. Dinosaurs were created in their kinds by God. God did not create each species of dinosaur, but He created them in their family groups, in their kinds. The flying and swimming dinosaurs were created on day 5 with the rest of the flying and swimming animals, and the land dinosaurs were created on day 6 with the rest of the land animals.

3. Most of the dinosaurs were killed in the Flood. Those that survived the Flood eventually became extinct due to the changing climate of the world after the Flood, a reduced food supply, and hunters.

4. Humans and dinosaurs did live at the same time. All land animals, including the dinosaurs, and people were made by God on day 6. Dinosaurs lived with humans until the dinosaurs became extinct.

5. Fire-breathing dragons, or fire-breathing dinosaurs, were once real creatures. The Bible describes one.
6. The Bible does describe a couple of dinosaurs.

7. The Bible does describe a fire-breathing dragon, or dinosaur.

Let’s look at a couple of those descriptions that the Bible gives of dinosaurs.

Job 40:15-24: "Look at the behemoth, which I made along with you and which feeds on grass like an ox. 16 What strength he has in his loins, what power in the muscles of his belly! 17 His tail sways like a cedar;  the sinews of his thighs are close-knit. 18 His bones are tubes of bronze, his limbs like rods of iron. 19 He ranks first among the works of God, yet his Maker can approach him with his sword. 20 The hills bring him their produce, and all the wild animals play nearby. 21 Under the lotus plants he lies, hidden among the reeds in the marsh. 22 The lotuses conceal him in their shadow; the poplars by the stream surround him. 23 When the river rages, he is not alarmed; he is secure, though the Jordan should surge against his mouth. 24 Can anyone capture him by the eyes, or trap him and pierce his nose?

What does this passage sound like it’s describing? (A brontosaurus.)

Job 41: Can you pull in the leviathan with a fishhook or tie down his tongue with a rope? 2 Can you put a cord through his nose or pierce his jaw with a hook?  3 Will he keep begging you for mercy? Will he speak to you with gentle words? 4 Will he make an agreement with you  for you to take him as your slave for life?  5 Can you make a pet of him like a bird or put him on a leash for your girls? 6 Will traders barter for him? Will they divide him up among the merchants? 7 Can you fill his hide with harpoons or his head with fishing spears?  8 If you lay a hand on him,  you will remember the struggle and never do it again!  9 Any hope of subduing him is false; the mere sight of him is overpowering. 10 No one is fierce enough to rouse him. Who then is able to stand against me?  11 Who has a claim against me that I must pay? Everything under heaven belongs to me.  12 "I will not fail to speak of his limbs, his strength and his graceful form.  13 Who can strip off his outer coat? Who would approach him with a bridle? 14 Who dares open the doors of his mouth, ringed about with his fearsome teeth?  15 His back has [e] rows of shields tightly sealed together; 16 each is so close to the next  that no air can pass between. 17 They are joined fast to one another; they cling together and cannot be parted.  18 His snorting throws out flashes of light; his eyes are like the rays of dawn. 19 Firebrands stream from his mouth; sparks of fire shoot out. 20 Smoke pours from his nostrils as from a boiling pot over a fire of reeds. 21 His breath sets coals ablaze, and flames dart from his mouth.  22 Strength resides in his neck; dismay goes before him.  23 The folds of his flesh are tightly joined; they are firm and immovable. 24 His chest is hard as rock, hard as a lower millstone.  25 When he rises up, the mighty are terrified; they retreat before his thrashing. 26 The sword that reaches him has no effect, nor does the spear or the dart or the javelin.  27 Iron he treats like straw and bronze like rotten wood.  28 Arrows do not make him flee; slingstones are like chaff to him.  29 A club seems to him but a piece of straw; he laughs at the rattling of the lance.  30 His undersides are jagged potsherds, leaving a trail in the mud like a threshing sledge.  31 He makes the depths churn like a boiling caldron and stirs up the sea like a pot of ointment. 32 Behind him he leaves a glistening wake; one would think the deep had white hair.  33 Nothing on earth is his equal—  a creature without fear.  34 He looks down on all that are haughty; he is king over all that are proud."

What does it sound like this passage is describing? (A fire-breathing sea-dragon, or a fire-breathing water dinosaur.)

So, the Bible does describe dinosaurs and dragons as part of God’s creation.

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