Lesson 4: Dinosaurs with Man

Well, I gotta give it to this lesson. It is the first where I actually had to step back and check additional data. I had to study! If nothing else, I respect that.

Question One: Is Noah’s Flood supported by historical fact? What does this lead us to believe?

Their answer: Yes, about 200 flood legends exist among the world’s cultures, leading us to believe the Bible is absolutely accurate in its description of a global flood of God’s judgement.

My answer: They get so cranky when anyone else tries to make leaps in logic, but “Well, there are many flood legends, THEREFORE! Flood is fact.” Right. There are no other possible explanations. Never mind that there is evidence of settlements under water in Mesopotamia, and younger settlements above the water line. They had a catastrophic flood, but their legend means the Bible is correct.

In fact, the fact that floods have historically ruined lives and civilizations, or the fact that most civilizations have formed on flood plains due to their incredible fertility, that means nothing. Despite the fact that people living on flood plains means that floods are likely to be common, and things that are common form legends. In fact… Could… Could that lead to the flood legend in the Bible?

Nah, theirs is the one, true, only flood legend that has any basis in fact. The rest are clearly derivative.

Question two: Could some dinosaurs still exist today?

Their answer: Absolutely! Of course, the land dinosaurs would be much smaller, due to the change in atmospheric pressure [note: see lesson 3 discussion for additional info]. Any that still exist would only live in extremely remote regions such as deep waters and swamps. There are thousands of accounts of dinosaur sightings in modern history. After all, dinosaurs were on the ark, too!

My answer: There are Big Foot sightings, Loch Ness sightings, Chupacabra sightings, UFO sightings, and legends that span the length of breadth of the world. To take 100,000 local legends, sift through for the 1000 that fit your agenda, and call those factual? That is just intellectual dishonesty to an extreme degree. The odd thing is that these are supposed to be huge creatures, in legend. The Loch Ness monster(s) is/are supposed to be huge, but despite innumerable scientific surveys of the area, not to mention the massive amounts of tourism the legend has spawned, there are absolutely no reliable sightings. Funny how that is.

These legends of dinosaur sightings are just that; legends, tales, stories to be told around a campfire.

Do dinosaurs still exist today? Yes, of course they do. Alligators, crocodiles, birds, they are all the descendants of dinos.

Question three: Does the Bible mention dinosaurs in general, or even specifically?

Their answer: The Bible makes many references to dragons (dinosaurs), and even specifically mentions fiery, flying serpents (Isaiah 14:29; 30:6), Leviathan (Job 31), a fire breathing dragon, and Behemoth, a sauropod-like creature (Job 40).

My answer: Like any number of ancient books, there are mythical creatures. To say “Due to these three local mentions, two of which penned by the same hand, completely prove dinosaurs in the Bible,” is just… odd, to me. That’s like saying “I read Homer’s epics, and now I am going on a Minotaur hunt, once I find the golden fleece, but I’ll be careful to avoid the Sirens.”

People have written a lot of legends, but so very few have any historical basis. To say “Someone wrote it down, therefore truth,” is to open yourself to many absurd arguments. To wit, the YECs state that God says the Bible is the Word of God, therefore it is the Word of God. “The Bible is true because The Bible said so,” in other words. You know what, given the corrupted and fallen nature of humans, you are right. I can think of no reason a person would ever want to lie to make themselves sound better connected or more powerful.

No one has ever done that in all of history.

That being said, what about dragon legends worldwide? Well, I am sorry, but Chinese dragon legends don’t really jive with dinosaurs; their dragons are, at best, fantasy creatures.

In fact, most dinosaur legends in China aren’t dinosaur legends at all. Foot imprints in trails have been identified as dinosaur tracks, but the local legends tell that the tracks are not of giant reptiles but of giant birds. Huh.

So you are wrong, I guess? Since legends are fact now, there were giant birds in China recently.

End of Questions

In the application section of this chapter, they fall back on the age old defence. Do not require that the Bible be proven right, but have faith in the absence of proof.

The Challenge section again asks you to accost a young person and tell them that dinosaur sightings in the modern era prove that dinosaurs are still alive, and that this means the Bible is true.

I … I don’t connect the dots the same way.

Crossover, Prologue

I’d been sitting alone in the interrogation room for hours at this point. The chair was hard and uncomfortable, the walls white and the light over bright. It was definitely not something I would consider enjoyable.

When I was sure no one was watching, I loosened the handcuffs that ran through a loop on the metal table. It was amazing how easy it had become, now, after I’d had some practice. A few months ago, I might have tightened the cuffs so much I’d leave the room with bruises around each wrist.

I was feeling through the one way mirror that dominated the wall to my left, but my range wasn’t good enough to tell who was all in the room. I could feel three people, but that was all the detail I could get. I was guessing that they were trying to come up with a strategy for dealing with me, but since they still had no idea what I could do I guessed that the conversation would end with uncomfortable silence. They knew I could do things they’d never seen before, but since they had no idea how, they didn’t know the limits. To be completely fair, neither did I.

The door clicked and swung open, admitting a middle aged man in street clothing holding a few sheets of paper, looking down at them as he walked over to the table and took a seat. I snapped my focus back from the room behind the mirror; the three people were likely watching us at this point. It amused me that this was all the information they had, as I probed the man who had just walked in. No metal on him, except the key to my handcuffs; well, they’re getting the right idea. Sort of.

“Amanda Simmons, born September 5, 1986. No criminal history, nothing out of the ordinary listed here in any of your school transcripts or records. I see you’ve worked at a few places here in the city, and even done some charity work. I won’t lie, I found that surprising enough that I followed up on it. Glowing references, seems they’d love to have you back.” The man set the sheets of paper on the table and looked up to make eye contact with me. He was smiling. It was an odd smile, not unkind, but seemed out of place given the situation.

My eyes slid out of focus as I felt his nervous system. Every twitch, every move of a muscle he made lit up like the flash of a camera. It helped me catch liars; it was something I had looked into while I was figuring out everything I could do. I read that, when being dishonest, most people made a large number of small, involuntary muscle movements. When I was focused on them, they were as clear to me as the sun on a bright summer’s day.

I couldn’t see even the slightest hint of dishonesty so far, but we were just getting started.

“I’m Detective Charles Sutherland. You can call me Charlie,” he continued after the brief silence. I refocused my eyes on him, but couldn’t think of anything to say.

“Right. Well,” he continued, and flipped the top two sheets of paper over to look at the third page. It showed a picture of me standing over the body of one of the others. “Given your history, I’m at a bit of a loss. We’ve got you on camera killing this guy,” he flipped another page. “Phil Isaacson. 34 years old, security guard working for various businesses down town. Near as we can tell, you two’ve never met before. His criminal record is as clean as yours. The odd thing is the guy was clearly built like a truck, but the footage from the security cameras shows you killing him without much of a fight. Now, I understand we like to think ‘innocent until proven guilty,’ but the video doesn’t exactly paint a picture of innocence.”

There was another silence as he looked back up at me. He seemed expectant, but I still didn’t really have anything to say. I did kill the guy, and I wasn’t in any position to deny it. Maybe this was the effect of watching too many movies and crime dramas, but I decided to say as little as possible. To be fair, what does one say? I knew the guy had to die, but right now my choices seemed limited to prison for staying silent, or a psychologist for the explanation.

I don’t know how long it will be until the human race learns about their fate, but I know that one woman who just killed a man was probably not going to qualify as a reliable messenger.

They all seemed so fragile. I knew it wasn’t my own thought, but that didn’t make it any less true.

The Detective’s eye flicked to the one way mirror for the briefest moment, then back to me. “How about we get those cuffs off? Can’t be comfortable sitting here like that for as long as you have been.” He stood up and pulled the key out of his jeans pocket. A few seconds later, both of my handcuffs had slipped off, and I leaned back in the chair, stretching my back slightly.

“Mind if I stand up to stretch?” My first words to the Detective were straight to the point, and nothing that revealed even the slightest bit of information. My–her training, coming to the fore.

“Be my guest,” the smile never left his face, but he crossed his arms and leaned back in his chair as I stood and did a full body stretch. God, that felt good.

I sat back down after a few seconds and met his eyes. I sent another light probe through his body; none of his muscles seemed tense. No fear there, though he had seen what I could do.

“This being recorded?”

“It doesn’t have to be,” he replied casually, still smiling, still leaning back in a relaxed pose. He turned his head to the mirror and nodded, then returned his attention to me.

Charlie seemed trustworthy, all things considered. Not like I had anything better to do at this point.

“All right,” I adjusted slightly, getting more comfortable in the chair. This would take a while, and I’d have to suppress her instincts. I knew she wasn’t going to let me talk without a fight. “Let me tell you a story.”