Many have been confronted with the breathless news from their children: “We learned about dinosaurs in school today, Dad!” followed by an expectant pause while we struggle with a response. Taking care how we answer is equally as important as the answer itself. Instead of calling down fire from heaven like the disciples wanted the Lord to do in Luke 9, the right attitude is the same patient grace He showed to the inhospitable village. Recognizing that our kids are quite naturally upset by a conflict between their Bible and the teacher we instruct them to obey, we must exercise patience and wisdom.
A good answer must come from rightly dividing the Word of truth. We may be tempted to answer hastily and overstep God’s Word, just as Eve did in the face of Satan’s questioning. God had not said to not to touch the fruit, and as logical as it seemed to not touch what was strictly forbidden to eat, by adding to God’s Word she gave Satan the leverage he needed to claim a victory.
There is no difficulty that God’s Word makes no “clear” reference to dinosaurs. He makes no mention at all about jellyfish or kangaroos. All creation is a marvelous revelation of God and so much of it is still unknown. That dinosaurs existed is not in dispute. The massive skeleton on display in a museum is not “evil”; it is part of the record of God’s wonderful ability in creating all things. It is the theory of evolution, better termed the “hypothesis of evolution,” that we oppose because it denies the record of God’s Word. In Job 40 and 41 we are introduced to two massive beasts called behemoth and leviathan, creatures which God expected Job to be familiar with, were created together with mankind (Job 40:15) and were clearly superior to other beasts (Job 41:33). What else could these now extinct creatures of massive size and great strength be but dinosaurs? Evolutionists theorize that dinosaurs died out because of catastrophic climate changes that caused their normal food sources to disappear. The catastrophe in question was a global flood, brought about by a new phenomenon called rain which is a pillar of today’s climate patterns, combined with a thinning of available prey to only what would fit inside the ark built by Noah.
Science supports the truth of creation. Let us not be afraid to arm ourselves with this knowledge. Paul twice quoted Greek poet-scholars in his sermon on Mars Hill … all wisdom comes from God! Here are three brief notes on a massive subject:
The scientific Second Law of Thermodynamics (all laws also find their origin in God!) states that anything left to itself degenerates instead of producing something better. Decay is a law that Paul clearly saw “written in his own members” (Rom 7:23). This law which has its roots in sin and will persist until sin is destroyed contradicts the basic premise of evolution (that order can spontaneously come out of chaos). To exist, order has to have a Creator.
Geneticists have proven that humans share a most recent common ancestor living anywhere from 6000BC to 1000AD – namely Noah and his wife. Similar studies show that all of us share a single father mockingly called “Y-chromosomal Adam” by evolutionists, and also a single mother “Mitochondrial Eve.” We use the names God gave them – Adam and Eve.
The obvious youth of creation is seen on land, in the sea, and in the skies. Earth’s rapidly decaying magnetic field, the high levels of rock-trapped helium produced by unstable elements, the low levels of river sediment and salt in our oceans, the continued existence of comets, the low number of observed supernovae, and the pinwheel galaxy formations, all point to a recently created universe (taken from articles from the website www.icr.org – Institute for Creation Research).
A note of caution: when David took five stones in his shepherd bag this tells us that he prepared for more than just the immediate confrontation with Goliath; but he clearly was not planning to engage the entire army of the Philistines single-handedly! Total defeat of the lies of Satan belongs solely to Christ; tempting as it may be, we will not preempt His victory by engaging in a global crusade against evolution. Like Paul at Mars Hill, we try to present the truth at any opportunity we are given and continue with those willing to listen. The gospel is, and remains, our focus, with creation one beautiful facet of the entire gem.
My advice to my son is this. First, his God does not lie. Second, as a student in our local school system, he is required to answer questions in accordance with the expectations set. Objecting to false teaching must be done responsibly, not rebelliously. Teachers of our children are included in the command “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers” (Rom 13:1). Thirdly, since he is a believer, he needs to know that the world that rejected his Lord will not treat him fairly when he stands up for His Word.
Our believing children must be taught by us that there is a worthwhile cost for identifying with the Lord, and that they must be careful to be good examples for Him. For unsaved children who have no indwelling Holy Spirit to protect them, the daily reading of the Word written by the same Spirit is still their best defense, as it is for us all. A family altar is a must!
Parents need to use caution and balance in approaching this subject. Reacting in haste, anger, or dismissing the evidence that dinosaurs existed because it seems to support evolution only puts us at greater risk to a wily and capable foe.
Reject the lie but, in the process, do not overstep God’s truth as did Eve. Take time to discuss the issues intelligently with children, putting God’s Word first. And “if any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally” (James 1:5).