Dinosaurs In The Book Of Job

There are two passages in the book of Job commonly cited as biblical evidence that "God admitted the existence of living dinosaurs". Also in the mouths of many christian apologists is the concept that the dinosaurs were happily living alongside mankind before the flood and that some animal "with a tail like a cedar tree" survived in the ark with Noah and his family. There are two such beasts mentioned in Job, those of "Behemoth" and "Leviathan".

-- Click To Expand/Collapse Bible Verses -- Job ch40:v15-24
Job 40:15 Behold now behemoth, which I made with thee; he eateth grass as an ox.
Job 40:16 Lo now, his strength is in his loins, and his force is in the navel of his belly.
Job 40:17 He moveth his tail like a cedar: the sinews of his stones are wrapped together.
Job 40:18 His bones are as strong pieces of brass; his bones are like bars of iron.
Job 40:19 He is the chief of the ways of God: he that made him can make his sword to approach unto him.
Job 40:20 Surely the mountains bring him forth food, where all the beasts of the field play.
Job 40:21 He lieth under the shady trees, in the covert of the reed, and fens.
Job 40:22 The shady trees cover him with their shadow; the willows of the brook compass him about.
Job 40:23 Behold, he drinketh up a river, and hasteth not: he trusteth that he can draw up Jordan into his mouth.
Job 40:24 He taketh it with his eyes: his nose pierceth through snares. (KJV)

-- Click To Expand/Collapse Bible Verses -- Job ch41:v1-34
Job 41:1 Canst thou draw out leviathan with an hook? or his tongue with a cord which thou lettest down?
Job 41:2 Canst thou put an hook into his nose? or bore his jaw through with a thorn?
Job 41:3 Will he make many supplications unto thee? will he speak soft words unto thee?
Job 41:4 Will he make a covenant with thee? wilt thou take him for a servant for ever?
Job 41:5 Wilt thou play with him as with a bird? or wilt thou bind him for thy maidens?
Job 41:6 Shall the companions make a banquet of him? shall they part him among the merchants?
Job 41:7 Canst thou fill his skin with barbed irons? or his head with fish spears?
Job 41:8 Lay thine hand upon him, remember the battle, do no more.
Job 41:9 Behold, the hope of him is in vain: shall not one be cast down even at the sight of him?
Job 41:10 None is so fierce that dare stir him up: who then is able to stand before me?
Job 41:11 Who hath prevented me, that I should repay him? whatsoever is under the whole heaven is mine.
Job 41:12 I will not conceal his parts, nor his power, nor his comely proportion.
Job 41:13 Who can discover the face of his garment? or who can come to him with his double bridle?
Job 41:14 Who can open the doors of his face? his teeth are terrible round about.
Job 41:15 His scales are his pride, shut up together as with a close seal.
Job 41:16 One is so near to another, that no air can come between them.
Job 41:17 They are joined one to another, they stick together, that they cannot be sundered.
Job 41:18 By his neesings a light doth shine, and his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning.
Job 41:19 Out of his mouth go burning lamps, and sparks of fire leap out.
Job 41:20 Out of his nostrils goeth smoke, as out of a seething pot or caldron.
Job 41:21 His breath kindleth coals, and a flame goeth out of his mouth.
Job 41:22 In his neck remaineth strength, and sorrow is turned into joy before him.
Job 41:23 The flakes of his flesh are joined together: they are firm in themselves; they cannot be moved.
Job 41:24 His heart is as firm as a stone; yea, as hard as a piece of the nether millstone.
Job 41:25 When he raiseth up himself, the mighty are afraid: by reason of breakings they purify themselves.
Job 41:26 The sword of him that layeth at him cannot hold: the spear, the dart, nor the habergeon.
Job 41:27 He esteemeth iron as straw, and brass as rotten wood.
Job 41:28 The arrow cannot make him flee: slingstones are turned with him into stubble.
Job 41:29 Darts are counted as stubble: he laugheth at the shaking of a spear.
Job 41:30 Sharp stones are under him: he spreadeth sharp pointed things upon the mire.
Job 41:31 He maketh the deep to boil like a pot: he maketh the sea like a pot of ointment.
Job 41:32 He maketh a path to shine after him; one would think the deep to be hoary.
Job 41:33 Upon earth there is not his like, who is made without fear.
Job 41:34 He beholdeth all high things: he is a king over all the children of pride. (KJV)

Just as in the second passage we do not honestly expect dinosaurs to be "fire breathing" creatures, we should realise that the first passage is also representative of something else; Leviathan is recognised as the world itself, with even Pharaoh called "a head of leviathan" in the scriptures, (Ps.74:v14). Leviathan is the dragon, the serpent (satan) whom is the god of this world, and after whose deceiving works the whole sinful world follows.

Then Behemoth, is a "gentle giant" of a beast that God likens Job to. ("That I made with thee" - or "of thee") Whereas the behemoth is likened to Job, as "Chief in the ways of God", God compares the gentle Job to Behemoth and sinners collected as "Leviathan". The world being so full of violence and corruption that it can never be "tamed" except by the power of God - Behemoth on the other hand has no need for restraint, living peaceably. The "his tail like a ceder" simply indicates a calm, slow and steady beast; not a violent animal that will resist every attempt to tame him.

A little context may help. Job has declared that he has suffered an injustice, and has not sinned to deserve that injustice - but even more so has refrained from leaving the blame at God's door, but leaving only that possibility left open in his own world-view. Job, has been struggling with the idea that the blessed by God need to suffer. Job is perhaps the only OT book where satan is called before God along with all the other angels. (Aside from another passage in Zechariah if memory recalls.) The presence of an "accuser" Job has no knowledge of, the scenes clearly separate as in the heavenlies.

Job, waxes most eloquently in replying to his friends that he has done God no injury, and spends much time side stepping their advice that he should repent - besides there being no record of him sinning in the account. God's reply to Job is one of: "I made the good, I made the evil - I have no debt to repay to the sinner." This doesn't seem like much of an answer, but Job is assured that he is in the wrong and lastly repents before God.

The answer God gave is reminiscent of the passage concerning the work of the potter - where God states "O house of Israel, can not I do with thee like the potter does with this lump of clay?" In reforming one marred vessel into another, God shows that even His own people are subject to refinement and testing.

God can and does bridle the fierce beast leviathan - He was also the one whom made Job, (behemoth by analogy) the calm and peaceful beast he 'is'. In so far as Job separated himself as innocent compared to the sinners God likened to leviathan, Job's answer from God is such as to state to Job, "Can you make the sinner righteous as yourself?" Job from his own slanted point of view would admit that "the sinner deserves all the suffering he gets" but not the righteous. If the sinner deserves punishment and requires such correction to be pointed towards righteousness, where is the unfairness with the shared suffering of the righteous?

God states to Job that he is become righteous because God made him thus. Sinners are God's creations as is Job, and the suffering Job experienced had a purpose for God's own righteousness rather than Job's own - though in the end of the book God again blesses Job and he prospers greatly.

Job (Behemoth) as Leviathan, is a creation of God - under God and God's will. The book of Job does not validate all suffering as righteous, but that "God's ways are higher than our own." Even in this singular case it is most likely also the simplest such example that we could understand. (We get a brief look 'beyond the veil').

Leviathan then is God's plaything to bridle as much as Behemoth is "Chief in His ways." Leviathan is the sinful fodder for forming a Behemoth from; just as the Leviathan would attack a Behemoth for prey in his untamed violence. Where else can God find a righteous man to make a Behemoth except from amongst the sinful and violent members of the Leviathan's body? That God spends much time lecturing Job on how little control Job has over the violent nature of the unrighteous, God assures Job that Job's human nature is essentially the same as a sinful man. Job's suffering had one result, that it is for God to divide the sinful from the righteous, standards are made by God and not between men, but over them all.

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