Dinosaur Bones:
         Just How Old Are They Really?


                    MOST PEOPLE THINK that fossil bones (of which the most
                     well-known examples are those of dinosaurs) must be very, very
                     old — because, after all, they have turned to stone, haven’t they?

                     Even millions of years might, to some, not even seem long enough to allow
                     for natural processes to gradually, molecule by molecule, replace the
                     original substance of the bone with rock minerals.

                     But this common picture is misleading. A recent book, co-authored by a
                     world expert on dinosaurs, points out some things about dinosaur bones
                     that are of great interest to creationists.1

                     For one thing, it says:

                          ‘Bones do not have to be "turned into stone" to be fossils, and
                          usually most of the original bone is still present in a dinosaur fossil.’2

                     OK, but even if the actual bone is not replaced by rock minerals, some
                     fossil dinosaur bones are rock-hard, and show under the microscope
                     when cut that they have been thoroughly ‘permineralized’. This means that
                     rock minerals have been deposited into all the spaces within the original
                     bone. Doesn’t this show that the formation of these fossils, at least, must
                     represent a long time? Think again. The same authoritative work also tells

                     ‘The amount of time that it takes for a bone to become completely
                     permineralized is highly variable. If the groundwater is heavily laden with
                     minerals in solution, the process can happen rapidly. Modern bones that
                     fall into mineral springs can become permineralized within a matter of

                     So even a rock-solid, hard shiny fossil dinosaur bone, showing under the
                     microscope that all available spaces have been totally filled with rock
                     minerals, does not indicate that it necessarily took millions of years to
                     form at all.

                     Now of course if a dinosaur bone is indeed permineralized, it would give it
                     great protection from the normal processes which cause things such as
                     bone to just naturally ‘fall apart’. So a permineralized bone might indeed
                     be anything from a few weeks to millions of years old.

                     However, in a situation where the dinosaur bone has been prevented from
                     being invaded by mineral-rich water, one would expect that over millions
                     of years, even locked away from all bacterial agents, dinosaur bone
                     would, in obeying the laws of thermodynamics,3  just disintegrate from the
                     random motions of the molecules therein.

                     There are actually instances, mentioned in the same book, in which
                     dinosaur bones in Alberta, Canada, were encased in ironstone nodules
                     shortly after being buried. We are told:

                          ‘The nodules prevented water from invading the bones, which for
                          all intents and purposes cannot be distinguished from modern

                     This is a stunning revelation. Evolutionists are convinced that all dinosaur
                     bones must be at least 65 million years old. Those who take Genesis as
                     real history would predict that no dinosaur bone is more than a few
                     thousand years old, so the existence of such totally unmineralised dinosaur
                     bones that have not disintegrated is perfectly consistent with our

                     We have previously told you about the unfossilised dinosaur bone which
                     still contained red blood cells and hemoglobin (see online article).5  Also,
                     we wrote about ‘fresh dinosaur bones’ in Alaska.6  Let the evolutionist
                     experts writing this book confirm this:

                     ‘An even more spectacular example was found on the North Shore of
                     Alaska, where many thousands of bones lack any significant degree of
                     permineralization. The bones look and feel like old cow bones, and the
                     discoverers of the site did not report it for twenty years because they
                     assumed they were bison, not dinosaur, bones.’

                     In summary, therefore:

                       1.Most fossil dinosaur bones still contain the original bone.
                       2.Even when heavily permineralized (‘fossilized’), this does not need
                          to require more than a few weeks. The creation/flood scenario for
                          fossilization would allow many centuries for such permineralization
                          to occur, even under less than ideal conditions.
                       3.Where bones have not been protected by permineralization, they
                          are sometimes found in a condition which to all intents and purpose
                          looks as if they are at most centuries, not millions of years old.

                     The Bible’s account of the true history of the world makes it clear that no
                     fossil can be more than a few thousand years old. Dinosaur bones give
                     evidence strongly consistent with this.

                                    REFERENCES AND NOTES

                       1.Philip J. Currie and Eva B. Koppelhus, 101 Questions about
                          Dinosaurs, Dover Publications, 1996. Currie is a well-known
                          dinosaur authority. He is Curator of Dinosaurs at the Royal Tyrrell
                          Museum of Palaeontology, Drumheller, Alberta, Canada.
                          Koppelhus is a visiting researcher at the same institution. Return to
                       2.Ref. 1, p. 11. Return to text
                       3.The Second Law of Thermodynamics formalizes the relentless
                          tendency of all systems to strive toward the most probable
                          arrangement which, in the absence of some specific ordering agent,
                          is the one in which the molecules exhibit the maximum disorder. For
                          more information, see this article. Return to text
                       4.Ref. 1, p. 12. Return to text
                       5.C. Wieland, ‘Sensational blood report!’ Creation 19(4):42–43,
                          1997 (see online version). Return to text
                       6.M. Helder, ‘Fresh dinosaur bones found’, Creation 14(3):16–17,
                          1992 and ‘Buddy Davis: The creation music man who makes
                          dinosaurs’, Creation 19(3):49–51, 1997.

                     First published in:
                            Creation Ex Nihilo 21(1):54-55,
                            December 1998-February 1999

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