What is the Biblical teaching on environment management?


What is the Biblical teaching on environment management?


- The Bible does not have the term “environment” instead it talks about creation. The Bible teaches us that man was created to be a steward of God’s creation (Gen 1:26,1: 29-30).God saw that everything he made was “good” (Gen. 1:20-25, also 1:9, 12, and 18). God saw that it was “very good” (Gen. 1:31). Basing on this statement, man was not created to destroy the Gods creation but, conserve and respect all that He created in order to praise him.
- God blessed man, and all living creatures, using the same words “be fruitful and increase in number” (Gen 1:28, 22). Destroying what in the natural environment prevents the multiplication of what God commanded to multiply and thus interfering with God’s creation plan of multiplying and filling the world.
- Man was set apart from other creatures. He was made in God’s image (Gen 1:27), and given authority over, and responsibility for, creation (Gen 1:26, 28). The authority given to man was not to misuse what God created, but to take care of it. Man was to work in the Garden of Eden and care for it (Gen 2:15). He was to manage it wisely but not abuse it. In today’s language its use was to be sustainable. As a result of the fall, management of the environment became difficult (Gen 3:17-19), yet man still had authority over creation, and responsibility for it, because he were still bore the image of God (Gen 9:6, 1 Cor 11:7). This creation mandate still applies today. The above mentioned statement tells us why we should struggle to act as core creators of God by conserving the natural environment.
- In the judgment of the flood, God was careful to instruct Noah to preserve seven pairs of the clean animals, which were later to be bred for food. Yet he was careful to preserve one pair of every species, regardless of its utility to man (Gen 6:19-21). In today’s language, biodiversity is “good”. God is making a new start. His will is that mankind and all living creatures “be fruitful and increase in number”. By destroying what he created we interfere with God’s creation plan. This is why he makes a covenant, not just with Noah and his family, but with “all life on the earth” (Gen 9:8-17). God promises never again to flood the earth, never again to destroy the habitat of all living creatures. If this is so, our destruction of the environment today works directly against the intent of this covenant! The rainbow reminds us that God has lain down the weapons of his destruction. It should remind us that we need to do the same. The land of Israel is given to Abraham and his offspring to inherit forever (Gen 13:14-15). The land was periodically given a chance to recover (Lev 25:3-4). Put these two scriptures together, and it is clear land use in Israel was to be sustainable.
- Turn to the New Testament and God still cares about his creatures (Mat 6:26-27). We therefore have a continuous witness about the importance of the environment from Adam to Noah to Moses to Jesus. The land is God’s, so we can’t just do what we please with it (Lev 25:23-24).
- The Earth has a future, even after Jesus’ return. It will be renewed (Rom 8:19-22), and will be our eternal home (2 Pet 3:13). Although the Earth will ultimately be renewed, the present destruction of the environment cannot be ignored. In fact, in Rev 8:7-11 it seems to be a means of judgment. (The imagery is symbolic, but are we seeing a fulfillment of this now as the Earth heats up (v.7), as the oceans become acidified (v.8-9), and as our rivers become polluted and saline (v.10-11)?
Wilfykil answered the question on March 13, 2019 at 13:20

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