Scientists say they are a step closer to proving a giant comet or asteroid struck near Mexico and resulted in the extinction of dinosaurs some 66 million years ago. According to the U.S. journal “Science,” researchers have used updated techniques to get what they believe is a more precise date for the impact — 66,038,000 years ago — which they are confident is accurate to within 11,000 years.
Using high-precision radiometric dating analysis of debris supposedly kicked up by the impact, they say these findings suggest the mass extinction of dinosaurs and the asteroid collision happened no more than 33,000 years apart — give or take 11,000 years. Paul Renne, a geochronologist and director of the Berkeley Geochronology Center in California, told LiveScience, “We’ve shown the impact and the mass extinction coincided as much as one can possibly demonstrate with existing dating techniques.”
Renne said, “We have shown that these events are synchronous to within a gnat’s eyebrow, and therefore, the impact clearly played a major role in extinctions, but it probably wasn’t just the impact.”
In real time, 33,000 years is a long, long, time — not quite “a gnat’s eyebrow.” A lot can happen in 33,000 years. So, it is refreshing to hear Renne admit that “it probably wasn’t just the impact.” Given the fact that these giant creatures continued to roam the earth for some 33,000 years after the impact, one must ask what else may have contributed to the extinction of dinosaurs?
“What we really need to do is to understand better what was going on before the impact — what was the level of ecological stress that existed that allowed the impact to be the straw that broke the camel’s back?” Renne said. “We also need better dates for the massive volcanism at the Deccan Flats to better understand when it first started and how fast it occurred.”
In February 2013, LiveScience reported, “dramatic climate swings in the preceding million years, including long cold snaps in the general hothouse environment of the Cretaceous, probably brought many creatures to the brink of extinction. The volcanic eruptions behind the Deccan Traps might be one cause of these climate variations.”
Notice the words, “probably” and “might be” are used? Why? Because these are only theories. Scientists are not able, with any certainty, to answer the question of what happened to the dinosaurs. You have to read carefully beyond the headlines to see it, but it’s there. Other scientists speculate that disease, parasites, poison gases or cosmic radiation may have played a role in the dinosaur’s extinction.
History.com states, “Evidence from the 65-million-year-old lava flows in India hint that a giant, gaseous volcanic plume might have initiated global climate change that threatened the dinosaurs.” Notice the words “hint” and “might have.” What is that telling you?
In a recent article on “Mass Extinctions, What Causes Animal Die-Offs,” National Geographic admits, “The causes of these mass extinction events are unsolved mysteries, though volcanic eruptions and the impacts of large asteroids or comets are prime suspects in many of the cases.”
So the truth is, scientists don’t really know what happened to the dinosaurs. Neither do theologians. While the Bible is silent on the specific appearance and disappearance of these giant creatures, some Christians believe Genesis 1:20-23 allows for the possibility of dinosaurs to be created on the fifth creative “day.” Still, there is no way to be certain.
The fact that human bones have not been found with dinosaur bones is why most scientists conclude the reign of dinosaurs ended before humans came on the scene. Any attempt to have them roaming around the Garden of Eden or packed into Noah’s ark only stretches credibility. To some, however, it is not outside the realm of possibility.
The truth is, the earth and the Bible only give us clues as to what happened to the dinosaurs. Humans are left with a prehistoric mystery that clouds the past and presents a premonition of the future.
Both the scientific community and the religious community are at a disadvantage when it comes to explaining dinosaurs. These massive creatures are not a perfect fit in the theory of evolution or the recorded account of creation. Still, they existed. So God gets the last laugh. Only He knows why they were created and why they are extinct.
As Daniel 4:35 describes this Creator: “Everyone who lives on earth is nothing compared to him. He does whatever he wishes with the army of heaven and with those who live on earth. There is no one who can oppose him or ask him, ‘What are you doing?’” — GOD’S WORD Translation.
According to Psalm 37:10, the Almighty will orchestrate another extinction — the extinction of the wicked. Only with this mass extinction, survivors will know exactly what happened.
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