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Wonders of Creation - Extinction

What do pteranodon and passenger pigeons have in common?

 

First, the pteranodon was a flying reptile, which was created on day five, about 6000 years ago (Genesis 1:20-23)

along with birds.

 

Second, they have both become extinct.  This could have happened because of several factors ? climate change, predators, disease, or hunting by Man.

 

Third, they both had wings.  The pteranodon had a wingspan of about 30 feet, (9 metres) made of stretched skin, while the pigeon had wings of feathers.  But both creatures could fly.

 

Fourth, both creatures were seen by humans.  Because God created all living things before Man, they must have all been known to Adam and Eve and their children.  This means any broad, general illustration . . .

What do pteranodon and passenger pigeons have in common?

 

First, the pteranodon was a flying reptile, which was created on day five, about 6000 years ago (Genesis 1:20-23)

along with birds.

 

Second, they have both become extinct.  This could have happened because of several factors ? climate change, predators, disease, or hunting by Man.

 

Third, they both had wings.  The pteranodon had a wingspan of about 30 feet, (9 metres) made of stretched skin, while the pigeon had wings of feathers.  But both creatures could fly.

 

Fourth, both creatures were seen by humans.  Because God created all living things before Man, they must have all been known to Adam and Eve and their children.  This means any broad, general illustration of the Garden of Eden or the world of that time, if it is to be Biblically accurate, ought to include pteranodon, and dinosaurs as well as birds.

 

The Biblical history of the world begins with a beautiful scene.  All life was in harmony, and all creatures fed exclusively on plant products.  But after sin entered, many of the problems which beset our world today began to appear ? diseases, carnivorous behaviour, poisons, stings, allergies and so on, as well as degeneration in plant and animals.

 

The passenger pigeon, about a century ago, was possibly the most numerous species on the planet, yet within 50 years humans destroyed every last one of them.  The first white man to report on the pigeons was Jacques Cartier, in 1543.  He described their numbers as ?infinite?.  In 1810 ornithologist Alexander Wilson sat down on the bank of a creek to count them.  They flew past steadily at about 60 miles an hour in columns about a mile wide.  After an hour the stream of birds widened and deepened.  By nightfall Wilson estimated the flock to be 240 miles long, and the number to be 2,230,272,000 pigeons.  (Over 2 billion).

 

All through the 18th century and the first half of the 19th the country was filling up with settlers.  Men killed pigeons as a matter of course tThey ate them fresh, or pickled, salted, or rendered down for fat.  Their roosts and nests were plundered and eventually there was no place they could find sanctuary.  At some sites up to 2000 people would be employed in catching and killing pigeons, and many of their methods were cruel and heartless ? such as setting fire to the trees to burn the nests so the young would drop.

 

By 1908 the total world population of passenger pigeons was exactly seven.  By August 1910 one female was left, in a zoo.  This one died in 1914.

 

Ever since creation, extinction of species has been a familiar theme.  From the overflowing abundance of original creation, the number of species was dramatically reduced by the global flood of Noah's time.  After that, for about 300 years, an Ice Age took its toll, and then came the worldwide droughts, which have produced many vast deserts.  Many creatures have drawn on their gene pool and adapted, but others have failed.  We live in a terribly depleted and damaged world.

 

The good news is, today's world is not the one which God intends to keep.

 

Richard Gunther, Copyright 2005