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Old 04-23-2003, 04:18 PM   #1
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Christians and environmentalism

So...what do you guys all think about environmentalism from a Christian perspective? I very rarely hear anything about it, even though we are all *supposed* to be good stewards of everything that God have given to us (including our environment, right?).

I work for a company that makes products out of recycled materials, yet it drives me crazy when we go through reams of printer/copier paper, use sytro cups for coffee and plastic plates and utensils....I won't even start on the whole plastic grocery bag issue....

I and my friends strive to recycle/reuse where and when we can, but I never hear about Christians being in the forefront of this issue. With Earth/Gaia/nature religions on the rise, and groups like Earth First/Earth Liberation Front, and things like the Earth Charter http://www.earthcharter.org/earthcharter/charter.htm all gaining populatiry...where does the Christian perspective fit in? Will we be held accountable for what the Earth has become?

Hmmm...maybe I ought to start a local eco-chapter or something....
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Old 04-23-2003, 05:04 PM   #2
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Discoteque:

I agree with you, for the last years i was on a university-project to make researches to reduce emission of aircrafts and i hope i can continue to do something usefull - maybe i can swich to helping people directly instead of just less emitting environment, but i'm not sure about my future plans.

Klaus
p.s. a friend of mine calls me "Captain Eco" - the environment super-hero, but i'm far away from being more helpful to the environment than destructive and far far far away from being a hero
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Old 04-23-2003, 05:11 PM   #3
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I think this is a very interesting question, and a viable one at that. Should they, absolutely, will it ever be a Christian issue or priority? No. The Christian belief is that the Earth is a temporary home which God owns and we merely inhabit. This is enough for me to say yes, the environment should be a priority. But most don't see it that way. It was a gift given to us. If my father handed me the keys to his car, I would respect and care after that car out of love for my father.

I typed "environmentalism and christianity" in yahoo and found a few web sites addressing the issue. I glanced over them but you might want to check them out.
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Old 04-23-2003, 05:18 PM   #4
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Discoteque:

I say go for it. I agree as Christians we are charged to be good stewards. The disconnect with traditional environmental interest groups occurs on two points: (i) the idea of man's dominion over creation, and (ii) a tendency to worship the creation rather than the Creator. This is probably why you donít see a greater Christian involvement with the groups you mentioned.

As a society, we have a lot of work to do on simply loving our neighbor. I guess we need to factor in the environmental component to this command.
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Old 04-23-2003, 05:54 PM   #5
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At the begining of the Bible:

Quote:
Genesis 1:28
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
for me that's clear responsibility for our earth. If you are the ruler, the sovereign over something you are imho responsible for its well being

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Old 04-23-2003, 07:05 PM   #6
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I think Christians should respect the environment. It can definitely be taken too far, however, in my opinion. I live in Texas. This last year, for the second time in 4 or 5 years, the state passed really strict emissions testing laws that required inspections centers to buy VERY expensive new equipment. Many of the mom and pop and local inspections centers had to close down because they couldn't afford the equipment. I would not be surprised to find out that certain people pushed this law into effect becuase they were receiving kickbacks from the equipment manufacturers. When environmentalism is taken so far that it hurts people (as it did in this case - those people lost work), I don't agree with it. What makes it worse is that unemployment is so high right now, and jobs are scarce to come by. If they had to do this, why couldn't they have waited for the economy and job situation to pick up?
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Old 04-26-2003, 03:43 PM   #7
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80sU2isBest:

I agree that it can be taken to far
But just think about how many percent of the world emissions are created in the US and how many percent of the worlds population live in the US and compare that.

I don't know the exact case you mentioned but i think destroying environment for saving jobs is no option.

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Old 08-05-2003, 12:29 PM   #8
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Good find, Klaus. Here are a couple of passages from the Bible that may interest everyone. God says to Moses:

"The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine, for ye are strangers and sojourners with me. And in all the land of your possession ye shall grant a redemption for the land." (Leviticus 25:23-24)

"Lest when thou hast eaten and art full, and hast built goodly houses, and dwelt therein; And when thy herds and thy flocks multiply, and thy silver and thy gold is multiplied, and all that thou hast is multiplied ... And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, And it shall be, if thou do at all forget the LORD thy God, and walk after other gods, and serve them, and worship them, I testify against you this day that ye shall surely perish." (Deuteronomy 8:12-13 ... 17-19)

The worship of money qualifies as walking "after other gods," so based on these passages, it's safe to assume that anyone or any organization continuously exploiting the environment for fiscal benefit would draw God's ire. However, what constitutes "exploitation" is always in debate, and some would argue that if we're to start drilling for oil in wildlife preserves to keep oil prices "comfortable," we shouldn't worry about the fate of the Earth because God will always provide for our needs as long as we remember to say, "thank you." Here in the US, members of the Republican majority seem to align themselves with the latter belief, though personally I don't share it. It is ironic though, that the Republican party is not only closely associated with the Christian right and conservativism (not to be confused with conservationism), but also big business. That's not intended as an anti-Republican statement, just an observation.

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Old 08-06-2003, 10:42 AM   #9
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I am in agreement that the enviroment should be cared for better and its easy to sometimes take that for granted when we as Christians do think of it as our "temporary" home anyway. Ive recently tried to be much more conscious of the enviromental issues at hand in order to be a better steward.

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Old 08-11-2003, 09:49 PM   #10
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My wife and I are Christians and we recycle all of our empty beer cans.

~U2Alabama
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Old 08-11-2003, 09:53 PM   #11
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Originally posted by U2Bama
My wife and I are Christians and we recycle all of our empty beer cans.

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Old 08-11-2003, 11:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2Bama
My wife and I are Christians and we recycle all of our empty beer cans.

What about all that methane when you burp?
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Old 10-15-2003, 02:12 PM   #13
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Re: Christians and environmentalism

Quote:
Originally posted by Discoteque
So...what do you guys all think about environmentalism from a Christian perspective? I very rarely hear anything about it, even though we are all *supposed* to be good stewards of everything that God have given to us (including our environment, right?).

We should be good stewards of our environment. How are we loving our neighbor by polluting his air and water? How are we loving the Lord our God by destroying His creation?

My family does what we can for the environment. We recycle everything that can be recycled, buy organic produce, don't litter and drive a car that gets 37 mpg.

There are some steps we don't take that we probably should, but many things don't have a viable alternative. For example, we use disposable diapers on our son, which are admittedly not good for the ecosystem. But cloth diapers require strong detergents and bleach to clean correctly, and strong detergents and bleach are ALSO not good for the ecosystem!

Many people are too lazy, too ignorant or too selfish to do their part. It's not just Christians, either; some of my friends are neo-pagans and they drive 15 mpg SUVs! I also understand that many environmental causes have a strong New Age flavor or are way too radical, and that makes Christians uncomfortable; I feel much the same way. But I do feel we need to treat Creation with respect, much as we would want houseguests to treat our houses with respect. Just because it doesn't belong to you doesn't give you the right to trash it.
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