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A Christian Response to Global Warming
by James Robison

03/01/2007  

The politics of environmentalism cloud the real issues.

The politics of environmentalism reached a crescendo this week with Hollywood endorsing ideology over art as the Academy Awards morphed into an Al Gore worship service. The hostility toward Christianity that often accompanies environmentalism has caused many Christians to completely reject all things "green." The few who attempt to lead in this area often find themselves out in the cold -- even to the point of being lambasted by other believers as "deceived" or "misguided."

Should a Christian care about the environment? If so, what level of priority should we assign it?

Before we can find any answers, we need to rise above the dirty politics of the "environmental movement." So much has been usurped, misrepresented and corrupted that it is hard to address common-sense environmentalism because of those involved in the movement as a career. We could discuss things like Al Gore's outrageous utilities bills or the 15,000-plus scientists who signed the petition declaring, "There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere and disruption of the Earth's climate."

Disagreement, hypocrisy and controversy pollute the environmentalism landscape; but rather than bog down in the mire of science and politics, I'd like to suggest a few basic truths related to the care of our planet.

First, God likes the earth. After He made it, He said, "It is good." God even invented waste management when he told the Israelites to "dig a hole and cover up your excrement" (Deuteronomy 23:13). There is nothing in the Bible to suggest that we have Divine license to destroy the earth. To the contrary, there are many lessons on stewardship and responsibility. Christians should care for the environment as good stewards of God's creation.

Next, we must establish the most valuable asset of our planet. Is it clean water? Unpolluted air? Old-growth forests? Or perhaps frozen icecaps? The answer is "none of the above." We are the earth's most valuable asset. People matter most. Any environmental effort must be positioned behind efforts to save people's lives, both physically and spiritually. Our world is beautiful and majestic, but God never intended for it to be populated with sick and dying people. People first, planet second.

Some environmental issues cross into the realm of national security, especially when it relates to dependency on oil and gas in the hands of those who hate us. If raising the average fuel economy on our vehicles by seven miles per gallon would eliminate the need for Middle East oil, as some reports suggest, then we should do everything within our power to reach that goal. If grain-based fuels can give us the option of never doing business with the likes of Hugo Chavez again, we should make it a priority. When an initiative will benefit the environment and improve national security, there should be no opposition to it.

Finally, waste is not wise. We should use and encourage the scientific gifts God has given to people to find more ways to conserve energy, preserve the land and water, and reduce pollution. Again, it's more a matter of stewardship than politics. God gave us a place to live -- complete with all of the necessary resources -- and we should respect it and protect it.

Parents often instruct their children to "leave it cleaner than you found it" when staying at someone else's home. The earth belongs to God, but he's letting us stay here. We should leave it in better shape for the next generation. Our ability to do so depends heavily on reliable information about the environment, as well as realistic solutions to act upon.


Publishing Information

Author: James Robison

Word Count: 620

About the author: James Robison is the founder and president of LIFE Outreach International, a Christian media ministry and mission relief organization. He and his wife, Betty, host of the television program Life Today; He has authored numerous books, including The Absolutes: Freedom's Only Hope and True Prosperity.

Media Contact: Randy Robison, editor at jamesrobison.net