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The Blue Letter Bible

Don Stewart :: According to the Bible, When Were the Dinosaurs Created?

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Don Stewart
Although the theory of evolution teaches that all plants and animals came about by natural processes, the Bible says that everything creature that exists is a result of the special creation of God. If God created all things, then the dinosaurs were certainly part of that creation.

Fifth And Sixth Day

The Bible has something to say with respect to the origin of dinosaurs. The first chapter of Genesis tells us that God created all the animals on the fifth and sixth day of creation. The birds and sea creatures were created on Day five.

And God said, Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky. 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. 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. And there was evening, and there was morning - the fifth day (Genesis 1:20-23).

The land animals were created on Day six.

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. 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 . . . God saw all that He had made and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning - the sixth day (Genesis 1:24,25,33).

Same Time As Humans

Adam was also created on the sixth day. If these were solar days, then human beings were contemporaries of the dinosaurs. Dinosaurs would have had to have lived at the same time as humans because they were part of the animal kingdom created by God.

Adam Named The Dinosaurs

Along with all the other animals, the dinosaurs would have been named by Adam. The Bible says that Adam named all the animals.

The Lord God had formed out of the ground all of the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought then to Adam to see what he would name them. Whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. So Adam gave names to all the livestock, the birds of the air, and all the beasts of the field (Genesis 2:19-20).

Not Same Time

If the days in Genesis were long periods of time, then it is possible that dinosaurs had already become extinct before humanity came on the scene. This view assumes there was death in the animal world before the Fall of Humanity recorded in Genesis 3.

Mentioned In Creation Account?

Whether the days in Genesis were solar days or long periods of time, dinosaurs, like all the other animals God had made, began to populate the earth after the initial creation. Israeli scientist Gerald Schroeder writes:

As to whether or not dinosaurs are mentioned in Scripture, consider this: Although there is no reference to individual species (other than humans) in the 31 verses that describe the first six Days, there is an allusion to those creatures we have labeled dinosaurs: And God created the large taninim . . . (Gen. 1:21). Taninim is variously translated as crocodiles, whales, or sea-monsters.
The word tanin also appears in Exodus. At the Burning Bush, Moses cast his staff to the ground and it became a nahash (Ex 4:3). But later, when confronting Pharaoh, Moses again throws down his staff and it became a tanin (Ex. 7:10).
From other places in Scripture, it becomes clear that nahash refers to a particular type of animal - a snake. In chapter one of Genesis, only general categories are mentioned. Since tanin is used there, it must refer to the general category within which snakes are found. Thus, tanin must refer to reptiles.
So a more accurate translation of Genesis 1:21 is: And God created large reptiles (The Jerusalem Post, International Edition, Week ending September 4, 1993, p. 6).

Why Did God Create Them?

As to the exact reason for the dinosaur's creation, we are not told. It is possible that the dinosaurs were created to show humankind the great power of the Creator but any conclusion regarding the purpose of the dinosaur's creation is only speculation.


God created the dinosaurs at some time in the past. There is no agreement among Bible- believers as to when this happened.

1.If the days in Genesis were solar days, and the creation was recent, then dinosaurs lived at the same time as humans.

2.If the creation in Genesis occurred millions of years ago, it is possible that the dinosaurs died out before humanity came on the scene.

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