Many Christians take the beautiful earth God has given us for granted. They don t realize that God intended us to take care of his creation. In this report, I will explain how the earth became the sinful place it is today, what our responsibility toward the earth as Christians is, and what actions can we take concerning our environment.
The world which God created was perfect in every way. After each day of creation, God saw that what he had created was perfect. God created the earth as he intended and willed it to be, perfect. There was no acid rain, global warming, or ozone depletion. God, the author of all creation, provided all living things with a perfect environment. But our chance at living in a perfect creation was ruined, when mankind fell into sin. The effect of the fall into sin includes living in a world that has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time (Romans 8:22). That perfect surrounding was spoiled by the effects of sin, just as we were corrupted. We see when this happened when we read Genesis 3:17. God said Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat of it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you. From this point on, mankind would have to live in a world full of sin as a direct result of our sin.
Many Christians do not realize how serious our responsibility to the earth is. God said in Genesis 1:26 that we are to rule over all the earth. When God created us, that is how he intended things to be. We were to care for his perfect creation. Now that the world is sinful, the responsibility to take care of the earth is still ours. God s command for environmental consciousness and care has been greatly overlooked by man since the fall into sin. As Christian men and women, we have any even greater responsibility to heed God s command to care for the earth. We have been given God s word, and because of this we understand, better than most people, that it is a command from God to care for the earth. It is now our duty to take action on this and do our best to preserve and care for this earth, as well as to help others realize their responsibility. We must also guide others to realize that it is out of love and obedience to God that we do this, and not to please ourselves on the earth.
How can Christians respond to this challenge of stewardship? With proper motivation, Christians can model themselves as the Lord s caretakers of his creation. Using resources frugally, recycling, reusing instead of landfilling, and other resource-conscious activities will demonstrate our sense of Christian environmental ethics. Some activities will not be easy. Some seemingly may be counterproductive in a materialistic world. But whose world is it, anyway? It is a product of an all-powerful God. It is hard for us to overcome our lazy sinful nature, which convinces us that as long as the earth is not hurting us at this time, we do not need to worry about it, and can put it off for future generations. Our motivation cannot be to do whatever makes us happier. It cannot even be to try to make a better world for our children and grandchildren. We should not care for the earth, thinking that we are going to save the earth from destruction by things like global warming, or nuclear waste. This is not scriptural. In 2 Peter 3:10, God tells us that he will destroy the earth by fire. Our motivation should be purely to obey what God has commanded us to do. We know that God, in his infinite wisdom, has a plan for the earth. All we need to do is trustingly obey what he has commanded us.
In conclusion, God has given us a responsibility. He commanded us to rule over his creation and care for it. We have to often overlooked this responsibility, and we need to pray for God to lead us to faithfully obey his command.