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Tag: environmentalism

Christian Self-Interest the Key to Environmentalism?

I discovered today that a post a couple of weeks ago about Christians and the environment popped up on a Christian environmentalist blog. My post was ‘Shouldn’t Christians Care about the Environment?” and the brief response (if it was a response at all) was called ‘Self-interest makes Christians better ecologists.’

I actually couldn’t tell from the entry whether or not the blogger agreed or disagreed with my post. There is only one sentence: “Anthony suggests that the reason Christians make better ecologists is that they put people first.”

This isn’t much to go on but there was still something about it that compelled me to reply.

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Shouldn’t Christians Want to Save the Planet?

There is no question that Christians should care about the environment. However, the infantile notion that the planet needs saving or could be saved is not what that means. This notion rests on the idea that the planet has some sort of intrinsic value, that it has the capacity to care which configuration it ends up in, and that there are things we can do for the sake of the planet just for the sake of the planet.

The interesting thing about Christian care for the environment, especially if we take the Scriptures as our guide, is that this ‘human interest’ is front and center. Genesis 1:26 has God putting mankind in charge of ‘the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.’ This we can properly call stewardship and as we see from the text, the value of humans and the earth is set by God, and in this equation, the earth is placed in subject to Humanity.

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