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The Blue Letter Bible

Don Stewart :: What Happened to the Dinosaurs?

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Don Stewart
Though dinosaurs once roamed on the earth, for some reason they are no longer alive. As to what happened to the dinosaurs there are a number of possible answers. The theory of evolution holds that dinosaurs lived during the Mesozoic Era - roughly 230 million to 65 million years ago on their time scale. At the end of the Cretaceous Period of the Mesozoic Era they died out. Among evolutionary scientists there is no consensus of opinion with respect as to why they died out.

Evolutionary Views

The most popular evolutionary views as to what happened to the dinosaurs include the following:

1.A comet struck the earth killing all the dinosaurs.

2.A giant meteor crashed into the sea. This sent a great tidal wave throughout the earth and drowned most of the dinosaurs.

3.The sun became too hot for dinosaurs to exist.

4.The sun became too cold to support dinosaur life.

5.The climate of the world became too dry.

6.The world's climate was too wet.

7.The magnetic field of earth reversed and killed most of the dinosaurs.

8.A supernova exploded near the earth sending radiation throughout our planet.

This is but a small sample of the theories the secular scientists have adopted to explain the demise of the dinosaurs. There is no consensus of opinion. There are a number of unexplained problems no matter what theory one adopts.

What Does The Bible Say?

Among Bible-believers there are a number of possible answers to this question. They include the following:

1.Perished Before Humans Existed

There are Christians who believe and teach that the dinosaurs perished before the creation of humanity. They contend that dinosaurs roamed the earth millions of years before God created humans. For some unexplained reason, they died out before humankind was created. Therefore dinosaurs were never seen by human beings. Those holding this view would include individuals who hold the age/day concept of the universe or those who do not see the Bible teaching anything with respect to science. In addition, those who hold to the Gap Theory argue that the dinosaurs are fossils from a previous creation before that which is recorded in Genesis.

2.Died After The Fall But Before The Flood

Another possibility is that the dinosaurs existed at the same time as Adam but died out before the Flood of Noah. For this reason there were no dinosaurs taken upon the ark.

3.Perished In Universal Flood

Some feel that the dinosaurs were not taken aboard the ark. For some unspoken reason, they were allowed to perish in the Flood. Several possibilities have been suggested.

First, God knew that fear and dread of human beings would be placed in all the animals after the Flood. Because of their tremendous size, Noah and his descendants would not have been able to deal with them if they became hostile.

Dinosaurs were tropical in nature. If the temperature extremes did not occur until after the Flood the environment would have been hostile to these creatures. Knowing all this, God in His wisdom did not allow them to be taken upon the ark.

4.Survived The Flood

It is also possible that dinosaurs survived the Flood. There are a two ways in which this could have happened.

Geographically Local Flood

There is the possibility that the dinosaurs, if still existing, would have not been affected by a local Flood. Those that hold this view would argue that the dinosaurs perished for some other reason than a universal Flood.

Taken On Board The Ark

It is also possible that Noah took two of each kind of dinosaur with him on the ark.

Since the Bible is clear that there were two of each kind of animal taken upon the ark, this includes dinosaurs. Some people have argued that because the dinosaurs were such large creatures they would have never fitted into the ark. However, they do not realize that most of the dinosaurs were rather small. Most of the publicity regarding dinosaurs have been given to a few of the larger kind such as Tyrannosaurus Rex. Even the largest dinosaurs were not as large as the blue whale.

If the dinosaurs were taken upon the ark they were, most likely, young adults rather than fully grown creatures seeing that the creatures that were on the ark were there to repopulate the earth. Therefore any animal taken upon the ark had to be at a place in life where it could still reproduce. There would have been sufficient room in the ark for two of each dinosaur.

All Life Destroyed, Geography Changed

The Scripture says that the waters of the Flood killed every living creature on the face of the earth including of course, all the dinosaurs. Many of them would have been buried rapidly by the sediments. The massive fossil graveyards give testimony to the flooding.

In addition, the geography of the earth changed. Seventy per cent of the earth's surface is still covered with water. All previous geographical sites were destroyed including the Garden of Eden. Mountains were formed where there was none.

Reminder Of God's Judgment

Dinosaur fossils can serve as a reminder that God judged the world in the past. The remnants of Noah's Flood remind us that God is both the Creator and Judge of dinosaurs.

Survived After Flood?

There is the possibility that certain types of dinosaurs existed for quite some time after the Flood. Since the beginning of recorded history, there have been many stories of dragons. The stories and the pictures people have left behind testify to the existence of unusual reptile-like creatures. Many of the ancient descriptions of these dragons sound like an encounter with a dinosaur. Legends are usually based on some degree of fact rather than just simple imagination. The fact that the dragon stories are widespread all over the world lends credibility to the fact that these people actually saw dinosaur-like animals.


Over a period of time, the dinosaurs did become extinct. This could have happened after the Flood due to a number of factors.

1.Temperature Extremes

One cause for their demise could have been the changes in the temperature. Many parts of the world became hotter after the Flood while other parts became much cooler. Because the dinosaurs needed a tropical climate to exist, they would have been limited to where they could have lived. Temperatures became more extreme. In some parts of the globe, a short ice age may have followed the Flood.

2.Other Catastrophic Events

It is possible that other catastrophes, apart from the Flood, contributed to the demise of dinosaurs.

3.Lack Of Food

If there was only a small geographical area in which dinosaurs could exist this would cause a struggle to find enough food to survive. The huge great forests that once existed were no longer there. Lack of food may have contributed to their extinction.

4.Atmospheric Protection Gone

In addition, harmful radiation from the sun and space probably came down. The world before the Flood may have been protected by a water vapor canopy that kept harmful radiation from reaching the planet. This canopy, the windows of heaven, was released at the Flood. As already mentioned, the existence of this canopy is not clearly taught in Scripture.

5.Habitats Destroyed

The world that existed after the Flood could have seen destruction of some of the dinosaur habitats.

6.Hunting By Humanity

The hunting, by human beings, would have also caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. The mammoths and mastodons were wiped out by hunters. People in ancient times could have also killed the dinosaurs for food, or possibly for sport.
As to the exact cause of their extinction no one knows. It is a fact that a number of animals still become extinct each year.


The great dinosaurs that once roamed earth are now extinct. As to why, no one knows. Evolutionary scientists pose a number of theories - none of which can be proven.

The Bible does not specifically say what happened to the dinosaurs for allows for a number of possibilities. It is impossible to be certain which theory is correct.

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