If Jurassic Park is anything to go by, it’s a good thing that humans and dinosaurs never coexisted. Science tells us that the “terrible lizards” went extinct 65 million years ago. The Bible makes no mention of dinosaurs (Leviathan and Behemoth in Job likely refer to the crocodile and hippopotamus, respectively).
Nevertheless, these fantastical beasts continue to capture imaginations—especially youthful ones. My preschooler already knows that dinosaurs go “ROAR!” Dinos are the stars of countless books, movies, museum displays, and even a live-theatre show. Despite extinction, dinosaurs are here to stay. It seems wise, then, to include them in a family exploration and appreciation of God’s creation.
With this goal in mind, here are a few dino-discussion starters to encourage curiosity and good questions.
• Scripture does describe extinction and speciation events similar to those that occurred during the age of the dinosaur (Psalm 104). What do you think of these events? How do they display God’s wisdom and goodness?
• How have dinosaurs benefited human culture? (Think biodeposits and, of course, our imaginations!)
• We know a lot about dinosaurs today, but let’s imagine what it was like when people first discovered dinosaurs in the 1800s.
• Earth looked very different in the time of the dinosaurs. The continents were in different locations, and places that are dry deserts today were marshy swamps. What do you think it would be like to live in such an environment?
• Dinosaurs quite literally came in all shapes and sizes. How did each dinosaur’s design equip it for survival?
• What can dinosaurs teach us about the God who made them?
• Just for fun, if you could be any dinosaur, which would you choose and why?
When we look at the remains of Tyrannosaurus rex, Triceratops, and all their fearsome friends, we can praise God for his creativity, wisdom, and power.
By Maureen Moser