Are Dragons Really Mentioned in the Bible?
- Vivian Bricker Contributing Writer
- 2022 31 Mar
Personally, I am a huge fan of dragons. I am obsessed with books involving dragons, such as the Wings Of Fire series by Tui T. Sutherland. Dragons have interested people throughout time as there is artwork depicting dragons in almost every culture and continent.
Many people strongly believe in the existence of dragons (myself included); however, some people do not believe dragons ever existed. In this article, we are going to see what the Bible says about dragons.
1. The Book of Genesis
This biblical mention of a dragon in the Book of Genesis is up for debate; however, the Bible describes a “serpent” as tempting and deceiving Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:1-24).
The “serpent” spoken of here is Satan. Many people have thought that Satan could have possibly taken on the form of a dragon when he entered the Garden of Eden.
While we often associate a serpent with a snake, it is highly possible Satan took the form of a dragon and that the word “serpent” used here is referring to a dragon. In the Hebrew, nāḥāš means, “serpent, image (of a serpent), fleeing serpent (mythological).”
My reasoning is that when God curses the snake, He curses the serpent to always crawl on his belly and to eat the dust of the earth (Genesis 3:14).
Since God curses the serpent to be doomed to always crawl on his belly for the rest of eternity, it would stand to reason that the serpent was not always cursed to crawl on its belly as modern-day snakes are restricted to.
Reasoning would conclude that the serpent may have previously had arms, legs, and even possibly wings. While this is an interesting theory of mine, I cannot be dogmatic. Nonetheless, the Book of Genesis does refer to a serpent, which a dragon can’t be ruled out.
2. The Book of Revelation
When a theologian is normally looking for a dragon in the Bible, the first place to look is always the Book of Revelation.
Despite my love for dragons, when dragons are presented in the Book of Revelation, they are presented in a bad light because Satan is described to be a dragon (Revelation 12; 13; 16; 20:2).
Reformed theologians believe the Book of Revelation is only an allegory, in which they believe the Bible is not telling us Satan is a literal dragon, but rather, he is just figuratively a dragon.
Dispensationalists, on the other hand, take Revelation to be a literal book of the Bible and that Satan will literally be a dragon. Whether you are reformed or a dispensationalist, either way, the Bible is telling us that Satan is wicked and will ultimately be destroyed (Revelation 20:7-9).
3. The Book of Isaiah
The Book of Isaiah is an unlikely place for individuals to go to when looking for dragons, yet dragons are referred to in this book of the Bible.
Isaiah 27:1 says, “In that day the LORD will take his terrible, swift sword and punish Leviathan, the swiftly moving serpent, the coiling, writhing serpent. He will kill the dragon of the sea” (NLT).
Similarly in Isaiah 51:9, the Bible tells us, “Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of the LORD; awake, as in days of old, the generations of long ago. Was it not you who cut Rahab in pieces, who pierced the dragon?” (ESV).
Throughout the Book of Isaiah, there are mentions of a dragon or what the Bible calls, the Leviathan. Scholars are in debate as to what the Leviathan actually is; however, many scholars and theologians believe the Leviathan to be a dragon.
The Leviathan is said to be able to breathe fire (Job 41:21). Many scholars believe the Leviathan to be an alligator, crocodile, or an extinct reptile; however, the alligator, crocodile, and other reptiles do not breathe fire as the Bible describes the Leviathan as doing.
It is highly plausible that the Leviathan spoken of in the Book of Isaiah as well as in other places in the Bible could be a dragon or a water dragon who lived in the sea.
4. The Book of Job
The Book of Job is another book of the Bible that includes dragons. The Leviathan is once again mentioned in this book of the Bible (Job 41:1-34). As previously mentioned, the Leviathan is described as a fire-breathing reptile (Job 41:21).
Since the Leviathan is described as a fire-breathing dragon who lives in the sea, it is highly possible that it is a water dragon.
When the Book of Job describes the Leviathan, it describes the Leviathan as being around the same time as when man walked upon the earth just like the behemoth.
Many scholars believe the behemoth would have been a type of dinosaur, specifically a Sauropod. Some scholars argue that the behemoth would have been a hippo or an elephant, yet the behemoth is described as having a tail that “sways like a cedar” (Job 40:17).
Hippos and elephants do not have tails that are this large as their tails are short. Nevertheless, the Book of Job describes mankind walking with both the Leviathan and the behemoth. The Leviathan and the behemoth are extraordinary creatures that God has made.
It is without a doubt that they exist because the Bible tells us they do. However, what is up for debate is whether or not the Leviathan is indeed a type of dragon. It is my opinion that the Leviathan is a type of dragon, yet each person can have their own opinion on the matter.
5. The Book of Psalms
The Leviathan is once again mentioned in the Book of Psalms. Psalm 74:14 tells us, “It was you who crushed the heads of Leviathan and gave it as food to the creatures of the desert.”
In this passage of Scripture, the psalmist is referring to the Leviathan being destroyed by God and giving it to be food for the creatures of the earth.
While this single Leviathan may have been killed in this way to display God’s glory, it is possible that there were more Leviathans in addition to the one spoken of in this passage of Scripture.
Given the description of the Leviathan, it is reasonable to conclude that the Leviathan could have been some type of a dragon, whether that be a land dragon or a water dragon.
Many people try to discount the existence of dragons, but there is much evidence of dragons throughout the world, such as each culture having drawings and artwork depicting dragons, not to mention the accounts in the Bible.
While some scholars may disagree with me, I believe the Leviathan is most likely a type of dragon rather than an extinct reptile, crocodile, or alligator.
Are Dragons Still Around?
We cannot be dogmatic at claiming dragons are still around or if they are not. It is highly plausible that dragons are still around, but they do a good job at keeping themselves hidden. It is also possible that dragons are not around anymore.
We might not know the exact nature and existence of dragons until we are in heaven; however, we can always read about the Leviathan in the Bible. If you’re like me, you have the hope that there are still dragons in the world.
I know that God has created amazing creatures, therefore, we cannot limit His greatness. Dragons are magnificent creatures and are wise according to ancient texts. It would be amazing to see a dragon, but we cannot be dogmatic that we would see one in our lifetime.
Just because we never see something with our eyes does not mean it does not exist. Dragons are mentioned in the Bible many times, with some references referring to Satan and some referring to the Leviathan.
For further reading:
What Is the Leviathan According to the Bible?
What Does it Mean to Be ‘Wise as Serpents and Innocent as Doves’?
What Does the Bible Say about Dinosaurs?
Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/ARV
Vivian Bricker loves Jesus, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Christian Ministry with a deep academic emphasis in theology. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, reading, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, she is embarking on other adventures.