Q: Are the environmentalists right or wrong? I hear both opinions.
Suggested Daily Reading: Genesis 1:26-31
A: Today’s environmentalists express a deep love and respect for the environment. They actively try to protect and preserve nature. They oppose industrial expansion into natural areas and accuse mankind of abusive, wasteful and harmful environmental practices.
Some of these practices fit with biblical teachings. We are called to value and appreciate God’s creation, including our earth’s environment. Consider such passages of Scripture as Psalm 19 and 104. Yes, we are to value all of God’s works, including our world that God created and uniquely prepared to sustain life. Respect and appreciation for creation as God’s handiwork is right, not wrong.
While most environmentalist groups share the same goal to respect nature, their motives, however, are different from a Christian’s motive. A Christian sees his or her God’s marvellous work in creation and loves it. A true Christian loves and respects God’s creation as one loves a painting or work produced by a loved one. Many environmentalists view nature as their god and adore “Mother Earth” and marvel at so-called evolutionary processes. The true God and the real Creator of all is not even in their view. Such motives are wrong.
Another distinction is that God placed man in a position to rule over His earthly creation (Genesis 1:28), and has given plants and animals to mankind for food (Genesis 9:3). Here many environmentalists’ beliefs and practices are contrary to God’s Word. Many deny mankind the right to rule over the earth and to use its land, resources and animals for desired purposes. Plants and animals are not placed at the same level as man, nor do they have the same rights. To place mankind at an equal level with animals or as having no more rights than trees is wrong.
What is the correct scriptural view of our environment? Mankind is given permission to use, but not to abuse God’s earthly creation.
Do you love and respect God’s creation? At the same time, do you see that God stands above His creation? Do you therefore worship the Creator and not His creation? How does the first verse of the Bible clarify this truth and condemn most secular environmentalist’s beliefs?