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What about the dinosaurs?

God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the water in the seas, and let the birds increase on the earth."... And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” Genesis 1. 22 & 24


Our meander through the Trotternish peninsula took us to Corran near Staffin Beach and then the Dinosaur Museum at Ellishadder. Our guide was Dugald Ross, whose lifelong interest in archaeology has led to the most startling palaeontological discoveries in Scotland. There is even a dinosaur named after this island! To behold the landscape and scour its rocky shoreline in Dougie's company is to see it all with fresh eyes.


Yet, just as our forebears who cultivated this land and fished its seas knew none of this, so the Bible fails to mention the millions of years before life as we know it trod the earth, when the continents were formed, ice came and went and creatures great and small roamed, flew and swam in shapes and sizes we are only beginning to learn about. Is this a problem?


No more than the Bible's silence on some of today's moral and social issues, such as nuclear weapons and gender realignment. Such dilemmas were not issues during the formation of Holy Scripture, so how can we expect them to find a mention? At the same time underlying principles were established which can be applied as life evolves: love your neighbour, tread lightly on the earth, remember you are accountable to God...


The same applies to creation. Discoveries that appear foreign to the Bible do not undermine our faith. Instead they add new dimensions to our understanding and enhance our wonder of what God has made and how he has made it. The Bible simply states that creation was not accidental, it was the product of a mind whose power and love is revealed in Jesus Christ and expressed though the Holy Spirit. Science is helping us get our heads around those timeless truths.

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