In the Garden
In case you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years, you’ve probably noticed that there is a big push to “Go Green.” Environmentalism has entered into mainstream pop culture. Now with oil prices on the rise and sky-high energy prices, more and more people are jumping on the eco-train. And why not? Using less energy = saving more dollars.
What’s more, Americans are becoming more aware of the long-term environmental impact that everyday decisions can have. Global warming has become a household term and a serious concern for many people. We understand now that if we continue on the same track, there won’t be much of an earth left for our grandchildren to enjoy.
This is all good in my opinion. The only unfortunate part about this whole green revolution is that it has begun and is primarily sustained from a secular angle.
Let me explain. In response to the whole global warming issue, I’ve heard many Christians scoff, brush it off, and say that it’s all bumpkis. I’ve heard things like, “The earth can correct itself,” or, “Humans can’t destroy the earth. That’s up to God.” Then there are those who think that Jesus is going to come back and destroy the earth sometime in the next century, so it doesn’t really matter how we treat the earth.
Think about it. When was the last time you saw recycling bins in a church building?
Creation-care has not been the top priority of the church over the last couple centuries. If anything, it has been a passing thought or a footnote. But should it be that way? Should God’s people keep focusing on everything besides the environment? Or should the church be at the forefront of this environmental revolution?
I think it helps to look at God’s intended plan for His creation. In Genesis 2 we see God’s original intention for His prized creation. Just after God made man, He placed him in the Garden with a job.
“The LORD God took the man and placed him in the Garden of Eden to work it and to take care of it.”
The first job mankind ever had was tending to, working, and caring for God’s creation.
So you tell me. Does creation care matter? Can’t God just clean up the mess that humans have made of this world? Or is it up to us to take care of the earth, take responsibility for the mess we’ve created, and take measures to correct it?
From the beginning, God has left it up to us to make use of the land and tend to the land. The earth takes care of us, and we take care of it.