“And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.”
It was always exciting for me, as a small boy, to sit down in front of the black and white TV set and hear my favorite program’s litany: “5, 4, 3, 2, 1 Thunderbirds are go!”
The marionette TV show must have been one of the first to spawn spin-off merchandise, and I enjoyed playing with my model Thunderbird 2. But where did Gerry Anderson get the show’s title from? It turns out that it was from Native American legends.
Many people groups, particularly in the Pacific Northwest, talk about the Thunderbird. This remarkable large flying creature was supposed to have amazing powers, such as that of thunder and lightning. Pictures of these giant flying creatures abound in carvings and in petroglyphs. Sometimes they appear reminiscent of eagles – the largest birds of the region today – but not always.
Many serious Native American commentators have suggested that thunderbirds could actually represent sightings or memories of much larger flying creatures – giant pterosaurs, such as pteranodons or quetzalcoatluses. Of course, evolutionists would say this is impossible. Pterosaurs must have died out about 66 million years ago. Yet, it has always made me uncomfortable at the very least that evolutionary scientists are prepared so to belittle the stories of the indigenous peoples.
As flying vertebrates, pterosaurs would have been aboard the Ark and saved from the Flood. It is completely consistent with Scripture to suppose that Native American legends are based on factual post-Flood observations of such creatures before they died out.
Prayer: We know, Lord, that all the creatures that You made were described by You as good. We thank You that everything in Your word is true, even if it seems impossible to those who do not love Your word. Amen.
Author: Paul F. Taylor
Ref: Johnson, B. (2002), Thunderbirds, < https://answersingenesis.org/dinosaurs/dragon-legends/thunderbirds/ >, accessed 5/31/2019. Image: Thunderbird petroglyph, from Wisconsin, CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported.
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