THE BIBLE…and…CLIMATE CHANGE

Psalms 65:9-13: “You visit the earth and water it abundantly, enriching it greatly. God’s stream is filled with water, for you prepare the earth in this way, providing people with grain. You soften it with showers and bless its growth, soaking its furrows and leveling its ridges. You crown the year with your goodness; your carts overflow with plenty. The wilderness pastures overflow, and the hills are robed with joy. The pastures are clothed with flocks and the valleys covered with grain. They shout in triumph; indeed, they sing.” CSB

OBSERVATION: Should a Christian be concerned with Climate Change? If you listen to the pundits today, this is the greatest challenge that faces mankind. One young politician is even predicting that we have only 12 years to survive unless radical changes are made in our lifestyles.

To be honest, all the predictions that are thrown around can be downright scary. My heart feels a tug when I see a lonely polar bear floating on a small piece of ice wondering where his home will be. And to make matters worse, if you even stop to question the claims of Climate Change, you are deemed as one who is ignorant and scientifically challenged. Where should a believer stand in all of this?

I am not a scientist. However, I am a student of life and the Scriptures. I want to share some Biblical insight into these questions, along with a little old common sense. Extreme positions rarely prove to be true. They do a lot in scaring us, even motivating us toward a position. However, they do little in changing the course of the world that is ultimately held in God’s hands.

First, I want to share an example from a Christian extreme position. In the early 1970’s there were many Bible teachers who were predicting, according to their interpretation of Bible prophecy, that the world was coming to an end. Some prominent Bible teachers even predicted the date and time (even though the Bible tells us not to). I was a teenager, laying on the edge of the diving board of my pool, my transistor radio in hand, listening to the countdown of the end of the world. Well, you can guess what happened.

Next, I remember being at the grocery store checkout line. They always have magazines at the checkout line. The headlines caught my eyes and made we wonder what the world was coming to. “WE ARE HEADED TOWARD ANOTHER ICE AGE!” There it was. The world was going to come to an end. We were all going to freeze! We were almost out of gas, waiting in long lines to get fuel. The price of everything was skyrocketing. And now – we were going to freeze! Or were we?

Fast forward to Global Warming. The earth is going to melt! The ice caps will melt and the world as we know it will be flooded and destroyed. And to make it worse – we did this! We are the ones who are destroying the planet by driving our cars and eating beef (producing methane gas). And when the temperatures seemed to be reversing, and harsh winters increased, we renamed it Climate Change. Yet, the outcome is still the same. The world will be destroyed by massive flooding because of man’s misuse of the planet.

What does the Bible have to say about all of this? In all of the examples above, if one was truly listening to the pages of Scripture, none of these extreme positions would have been taken. In the verses from Psalm 65 we find God’s care and provision of the earth for mankind’s sake.

  • “God’s stream is filled with water, for you prepare the earth in this way, providing people with grain. You soften it with showers and bless its growth, soaking its furrows and leveling its ridges.”

The world was destroyed once by water. This was not because of man’s misuse of the earth, but because of man’s great sinfulness. And when this judgment was finished the Lord made a covenant with mankind. He put the rainbow in the sky as a sign of His covenant. And God never breaks His covenants!

  • “Then God spoke to Noah, “Come out of the ark, you, your wife, your sons, and your sons’ wives with you. Bring out all the living creatures that are with you — birds, livestock, those that crawl on the earth — and they will spread over the earth and be fruitful and multiply on the earth…Then Noah built an altar to the Lord. He took some of every kind of clean animal and every kind of clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar. When the Lord smelled the pleasing aroma, he said to himself, “I will never again curse the ground because of human beings, even though the inclination of the human heart is evil from youth onward. And I will never again strike down every living thing as I have done. As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, and day and night will not cease.” Genesis 8:15-17, 20-22 CSB

This is God’s covenant – “As long as the earth endures, seed time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, and day and night will not cease.” God’s faithfulness toward mankind has survived the predictions of false prophets and the overreaching predictions of scientists. There is no need to fear the predictions of the dooms day sayers, be they from the pulpit, the laboratory, or the halls of Congress.

One more word of balance is needed. Jesus Christ is coming back, and there will be an end of the age. The Book of Revelation clearly describes this. And, until that time, as believers we are called to be wise stewards of our environment. This means that we should care about the use and management of this world’s resources. Yet, in all of these things we must look to the Scriptures and exercise some common sense. I am sure glad that I did not buy that dog team and sled while I lived in Southern California!

Lord, You are the keeper of the Universe! You hold the world in Your hands. Until Jesus returns, the earth will endure. Seed time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will not cease. Give me faith to trust You with my daily provision. And give me wisdom in being a good steward of all the gifts you have placed in my hand.

In Jesus Name!

About Kirk's Devotional Journal

Kirk L. Zehnder is the Founder of Resurrection Christian Outreach. RCO is a ministry that promotes the growth and vitality of the local church through speaking engagements, seminars, various media tools, and written curriculum and books. This ministry was started over 35 years ago by Kirk as a means to strengthen the church that he was pastoring. It grew as Kirk began to share these tools with other churches. Today many of the materials are being used by local churches both nationally and internationally. Kirk's Devotional Journal is a result of struggling with Bible reading programs that never seemed to work. Kirk feels the Lord helped him discover an easy to follow program to Read, Reflect, Pray, and Journal through the Bible in one year. This program is called L.I.F.E. Unlike other programs there are no dates to follow. You can miss a day and still complete your reading. You never feel like the dates and verses you missed are chasing you. You are free to enjoy your daily Biblical journey and listen to the voice of The Lord. For more information on the L.I.F.E. plan, send an email to rcoutreach@aol.com. Kirk is also available for speaking engagements, seminars, and retreats. With over 40 years of professional business and pastoral ministry experience, Kirk brings a unique combination of practical wisdom, humor, and Biblical insight. If you would like Kirk to speak at your church, school, or ministry, please send an email to rcoutreach@aol.com and we will get back to you as soon as possible to discuss your opportunity.
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