The Dinosaur Question
Despite any ideas the media may have given you, Christianity and the theory of evolution are not mutually exclusive beliefs. The Catholic Church, for example, teaches that we may believe in evolution, provided we view it as guided by the hand of God, rather than being purely random. This is what is meant by the term “intelligent design,” and it is how I have always viewed evolution. While our secular society would have you believe that you can’t possibly be a good scientist and a devout Christian, they’re wrong. Learning about science, for me, was always an eye-opening lesson in the subtle intricacies of creation. To our limited minds, it’s awesome to realize the tiniest little things God considered when putting this universe together, how it all fits together, and the pure artistry of it all.
My Christian belief caused a hiccup when it came to dinosaurs. Paleontologists have proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that these creatures existed at one time. Heck, I’ve seen the fossils myself in museums. The hiccup comes when I get to the part that says they were extinct before man appeared on the Earth. How can that be? How could there have been something like T. Rex before man existed? T. Rex was a predator, and there was no predation before the Fall of man!
To my mind, this presented a major problem. It’s the analysis of teeth that distinguishes carnivores from herbivores; maybe that analysis was in error, and all the dinosaurs were herbivores? Nah. Toss that one out as soon as you think of it; it’s about as unlikely as it gets. However, one can posit that herbivores were around first, and carnivores evolved later; that might fit. Yet fossil studies don’t suggest that, either. The third possibility, to my mind the most likely, is that the perceived timing is off: Either man has been around longer, or dinosaurs remained extant a lot later, than previously believed.
When I discussed this with a friend of mine (now gone from us), he pointed out that he had seen a show on…A&E? The History Channel? I don’t really remember which; it was several years ago. At any rate, I’m told the program showed ancient gold tablets that had been discovered in South America, Incan in origin, that bore etchings of hunters taking down what was unmistakably a dinosaur. Does anybody recall having seen this program, or perhaps read about something like this? I’d really like to know, since this question has been bugging me for nearly half my life now.