Man is not the most deadly pollutant as the radical environmentalists say. They say that you, your very presence on earth, is a pollutant, a scourge to the environment. Man can be, and often is a pollutant, but not in the way the environmentalists say.
They say that man’s presence on earth and his use of the earth is the problem. Granted, we are responsible before God to use the earth responsibly, recognizing that generations will come after us, and we are stewards for our posterity; we should pass earth on to the next generations more developed and better than we ourselves received it from our predecessors. Loving our neighbor as ourselves dictates a wise and conserving use of the earth as we go forward in obeying the Dominion Mandate to multiply in the earth and subdue it (Genesis 1:28).
The Most Deadly Pollutant
The REAL PROBLEM with the environment is man’s sin. When man sins, when he lives as if there is no God, not only are other people effected by their sin (oppression, extortion, adultery, etc.), but the environment is also effected (the birds, the animals, the land itself). I believe this effect on the environment is due to the fact that humans are called to have dominion (care, stewardship, authority) over the earth and its creatures. When man is out of sync with God, he does not have the ability/capacity to care for the creation. This care is not only physical (what he can do physically to the environment), but also spiritual. The earth is effected spiritually by man’s sin, or by his faithfulness.
God blesses creation:
“And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.””
Genesis 1:22 (NKJV)
Or God curses creation if man is not faithful to the Covenant:
“The earth mourns and fades away, The world languishes and fades away; The haughty people of the earth languish. The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants, because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore the curse has devoured the earth, and those who dwell in it are desolate. Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left.”
Isaiah 24:4-6 (NKJV)
“By swearing and lying, killing and stealing and committing adultery, they break all restraint, with bloodshed upon bloodshed. Therefore the land will mourn; and everyone who dwells there will waste away with the beasts of the field and the birds of the air; even the fish of the sea will be taken away.”
Hosea 4:2-3 (NKJV)
Also see Joel chapter 1.
The Evangelical Church is largely without understanding of the implications of the Environmental Movement. The ICCP document on The Biblical Perspective of Environmental Stewardship addresses radical environmentalism’s teaching and assumptions. This official ICCP document is available in two formats: a downloadable pamphlet (full color, prints double-sided to legal size paper) and also from the topic’s page here.
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There is also a brief Commentary on the sanctity of life by Dr. Eugene Clingman on this page.
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