08 February, 2010

Christians and Ecology.

OK, I've got people worked up again. I seem to have the ability to do that, and quite well. Yesterday in my sermon, really as a side note, I talked about the runaway ecological efforts of some that are putting human beings at extreme risk and danger, for the sake of a bug, a minnow and so on. I pointed out that Genesis 1:28 says "And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth." I think most people understood what I was saying, but some took it to the extreme, and supposedly I said that man can destroy the earth if he wants to. I never said that, and I will not back down off of what I said. When the life of a bug or a minnow or a tree means more than that of a human, then we are violating the Word of God. Period.

I have never been able to figure out why people want to go to opposite ends of the polar spectrum when it comes to issues like this. The fact is that if you go into a bookstore and begin looking at the latest books on "going green" you will find that far more times than not, the authors will blame pollution, global warming, land erosion and so on, on Christians and the Bible. It seems that to most environmentalists, allowing man have "dominion" over the animals and to "subdue" the earth means that God has told man that he has a free rein to do absolutely anything he wants to the earth, to abuse it, and mess it up, all for his own benefit. They will scream that the planet and the animals have rights too, and that we don't have the right to mine it, burn it and not give a second thought to the damage being inflicted.

That is far from the truth. Nowhere did God give man authority to destroy His creation. The environmentalists are correct in saying that man should be concerned and address ecological concerns. But they are very wrong to blame God for ecological problems. God is not responsible for man's neglect of nature.

For anyone to think that God has given Carte Blanche to plunder the earth is simply absurd. Think about this; He (God) is the creator. Tell me, why in the world would the creator turn right around and hand His creation over to Adam and command him to mess it up? That would be like a master carpenter creating a beautiful piece of furniture and then telling his children to smash it and turn it into firewood. God's plan and desire is for man to care for it, keeping it and prolonging it's life. In fact, if one simply reads the Bible in context, it becomes perfectly clear what God's plan is, for in Genesis 2 God defines and clarifies His Genesis 1:26 & 28 instructions. In Genesis 2:15 it says; "Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to dress and keep it." The NIV says "to work and take care of it." That does not sound like He intended for it to be plundered. Notice, we are caretakers. A caretaker's charge is to tend to, maintain and protect that which has been put in his charge so that he can return it to it's owner in good condition. It is our responsibility to take care of that which belongs to God.

So, what about putting the value of the lives of fish, bugs or other animals over that of human beings? I think that is pretty clear when God gave all these to man. Genesis 1:29 - 30 says, "Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and the creatures that move on the ground... everything that has breath of life in it... I give every green plant for food." In other words... it is ours to use.

Today we see a group of men putting the lives of dolphins, whales, insects and minnows as having more value than that of a man, woman or child. This is in direct opposition to the Word of God. Take care of the planet? Absolutely. But man is God's highest creation, and as such, the life of a human and the well being of human beings as a whole trumps a plant, animal or anything else, every time.

No comments: