Stewards of the Earth

    God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it.  Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
    Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it.  They will be yours for food.  And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move on the ground – everything that has the breath of life in it – I give every green plant for food.”  And it was so. 
 – Genesis 1:28-30

I’ve been told that God gave man the earth, so man can do whatever he wants with it.  If he wanted to, man could kill off all the birds of the air, the fish in the sea, or every living creature that moves on the ground.  Why?  Because it is his God-given right.  Man is the ruler of this world.  The Bible tells us so!  It tells us to subdue the earth. 

On the other hand, I’ve been told that, as God’s chosen people, we should defend this earth and all the creatures in it from harm.  God gave us the seed-bearing plants and the fruit from the trees to eat, but never told us that it was okay to kill for our food.  Basically, we were made to be vegetarians and environmentalists. 

Christians have made arguments for both sides.  We look around and we see our world being torn apart.  Coal mining is ripping open mountain tops.  Oil is spilling out into the sea.  Cows, pigs and chickens are being raised in pens, only to be slaughtered by the thousands.  Whaling and fishing have driven some species to the brink of extinction.  Forests are being clear-cut in the name of human development. 

[NOTE:  Don’t get me wrong, I love bacon, hamburgers and the like.  I am far from a vegetarian.  Just so you don’t get the wrong idea…]

But when do we say “Enough is enough”? 

God created the world and all the animals and creatures in it.  There is something sacred about the untouched wilderness.  Go out into the forests, into the untamed and you may feel closer to God than you ever did walking through a city.  Walk though the trails and you can hear creation crying out to God, the creator all around you. 

He gave that to us.  The way I see it, it is still sacred and we must learn to care for it. 

There are people out there who believe that human beings are killing the planet.  We are causing the next great extinction.  We have already killed thousands of animals that we may never see again, except in cages and in zoos.  They say we will kill ourselves because we are killing everything else that sustains life on this planet. 

I’d have to agree with some of what they say.  We are the stewards of this world, taking care of it until the time comes when God returns and takes it back. 

I’m not saying that we should all join PETA, Green Peace, the Sea Shepherds and every other environmental group out there, I’m saying that we need to learn how to care for this world before we tear it apart and leave it broken for our children, grand children and all those that are coming after them.  We dont have to be eco-terrorists, vegetarians and crazy people to learn how to live in harmony with all that surrounds us. 

Yes, I know we can’t change everything that we have done in the name of development, but we can teach our children, the youth to value what God has given us to protect, to rule over, to subdue. 

We’ve come a long way since the days of Adam and Eve.  Cities have risen and crumbled.  Nations have come and gone.  The face of the earth has changed.  But we are still God’s stewards ruling over this land until He returns one day. 

God Bless and PEACE

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