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Witness from the Bible

According to dictionary definitions Behemoth means a beast of oppressive size and enormous power. In another sense it is used to describe a vast corporation or organisation. In the Bible it is found in Job chapter 40.

“Look at Behemoth, which I made along with you and which feeds on grass like an ox. What strength it has in its loins, what power in the muscles of its belly. Its tail sways like a cedar; the sinews of its thighs are close-knit. Its bones are tubes of bronze, its limbs like rods of iron. It ranks first among the works of God, yet its Maker can approach it with his sword. The hills bring it their produce, and all the wild animals play nearby. Under the lotus plants it lies, hidden among the reeds in the marsh. The lotuses conceal it in their shadow; the poplars by the stream surround it. A raging river does not alarm it; it is secure, though the Jordan should surge against its mouth. Can anyone capture it by the eyes, or trap it and pierce its nose?"

Every word, whether it be realistic or poetic is descriptive of a gigantic creature who fulfils the meaning of the word behemoth: which most experts suggest means colossal beast.

The book of Job was written between 4000 and 3500 years ago. You could argue that biblical commentaries have got it right in describing Behemoth as either an elephant or a hippo, as both are very large and also herbivores. This book of Job demonstrates that its writer understands the animal world very well. And yet if behemoth was an elephant or a hippo then what explanation is there for this colossal beast's tail being described as moving like a cedar. In the bible the cedar tree is a byword for grandeur. The movements of their branches would be a natural likeness to that of creatures such as a diplodocus or argentinosaurus.

The tails of all sauropods are of this type, massive, and they must have swayed like the branches of huge trees. The tails of elephants and hippos by contrast are puny and insignificant. Despite their size and power, the only part of their impressive frames you would not pick out for special attention would be their tails. Look at the sauropods, these herbivores and first among God's creation. Which part of their anatomy would you draw special attention to if you wanted to state just how magnificent they are? "Its tail sways like a cedar," as a description of either an elephant's tail or hippo's is just absurd.

God speaks to Job of a creature Job must have seen. He speaks of a massively impressive animal. Greater than every other, a standout animal. How else would the argument made by God have made its impact?

The image below gives a good idea of the scale of Sauropods

Witness of the Bible