This day (22nd April) has been dubbed ‘Earth Day’. Christians, who owing to their social conservatism often end up siding with those on the right wing of the political spectrum, risk being wrapped up in climate change denial. Now, I believe there is a problem with atheistic environmentalism which can promote a low view of humanity compared to other life and blow up issues such as ‘overpopulation’. Firstly, humans are made in the image of God, and were given dominion over the earth and everything in it. Secondly, there is nothing wrong in humanity’s being fruitful: that is a creation ordinance. Neither is there anything wrong with human development. Finally, God is sovereign over his creation and not one sparrow falls to the ground apart from him (Matthew 10:29). No events on this earth take God by surprise; we should trust in him.
However, that is no excuse for us to ignore environmental issues and use our resources irresponsibly.
And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the heavens and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. (Genesis 1:28-31 ESV)
When God created this earth, it was very good. Knowing that we are stewards appointed by him, people who were fearfully and wonderfully made in his image, and especially as people who walk in newness of life in Christ Jesus, we should take all the more seriously our duty to take good care of it.