Earlier today I went to the lake with my girlfriend and some friends for her birthday. We ate dinner, had some cake and played around… it was a great time! Both for us having fun and just enjoying nature.
While we were there at least three families, with a lot of little kids, were also enjoying the lake. Fishing, swimming, Marco Polo (old school fun!), and otherwise just having a great day.
But then I looked at the shore. There were bottle caps, busted bottles, empty beer cans and other assorted trash and pollutants. And I began to wonder, If we treat nature like this how long will these beautiful environments be around for our enjoyment?
Environmentalism, justly, has some stigmatism about it. The stereotypical environmentalist is a hippy or some form of new-age neopagan earth “mother” worshippers who put nature above man, believing it to be divine. This is false and Christians, rightly, have separated themselves from this movement. But have we gone to far?
The bible says: “Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth'” (Genesis 1:26 ESV).
Now, what does “dominion” mean? The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as “Controlling power or influence over others”. Man loves this. We have authority over the earth it is ours to do with as we please. Accept its not. We are given dominion over the earth to glorify God. Since the fall of man, we have forgotten our purpose in having dominion.
God is the true King of the world, and just as the stewards of Gondor kept the kingdom running and dealt with upkeep and governing while awaiting the true king (Lord of the Rings), So man must be for God. It is not our place to ruin God’s creation but to look after it awaiting the return of the king.
Thus, while we should reject environmentalism all christians should engage in “creation stewardship”. We must take care of the earth but acknowledge the reason, Not because it is divine but because we are God’s stewards.