Today is Earth Day. The environmentalist are out in force cleaning up streams, driving their hybrids and looking down their noses at our S.U.V.s, and sounding off about the sacredness of protecting Mother Earth. To them, environmentalism isn’t just a cause, but a religion – and a life and death matter.
That doesn’t mean that everything they say is wrong. Quite frankly, much of what they do is very good. No one wants to go back to the days when the factories spewed black clouds of toxic smoke into our environment or drained their sewers of toxic poisons into our rivers. As a society, we were really dumb back then, and we’ve made great progress. Our environment is cleaner now than at any time since the Industrial Revolution began. We all enjoy our relatively pristine environment. Nor do all those concerned about our environment make it a religion.
But the whole premise of the radical environmentalist is wrong. As Ben Shapiro wrote,
“While Christians across the world marked Easter and Jews marked Passover, liberals marked their annual ode to neo-Paganism with hippy-dippy exercises in green self-righteousness.”
Their love of Mother Earth borders on worship.
Their error is all laid out in Scripture. Romans 1:18 gives us the underlying cause:
“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness.”
They have refused to acknowledge the one true God of heaven, and instead rely on their own faulty human reasoning. And human reasoning when divorced from the knowledge of God can only lead into gross error. As a result, men have turned to a new god to worship. That god is the earth. Some refer to her as Gaia, the Greek mother goddess who personifies the earth and gave birth to the oceans by an incestuous relationship with her son, Uranus, the god of the sky. So the origin for the worship of Mother Earth is Greek Mythology.
This worship of creation was predicted by Paul in the Book of Romans. Romans 1:21-23 tells us:
“Because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.”
In other words, they became idolators. But the greatest idol is earth herself. Romans 1:25 concludes, they “worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever.” They worshipped what God created, not the God who created everything.
Margaret Meade, a famous evolutionary anthropologist, wrote:
“Earth Day is the first holy day which transcends all national borders, yet preserves all geographical integrities, span mountains and oceans and time belts, and yet brings people all over the world into one resonating accord, is devoted to the preservation of the harmony in nature.”
Yes, to the radical environmentalists it is a “holy day.”
Rather than worship creation, we are to take dominion of creation. God, as creator, gave that dominion to man. Genesis 1:28 states,
“Then God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.’”
We should not worship that which we have rule over.
Having dominion over creation doesn’t mean we can rape and plunder the planet. We did that, to our shame, in the not too distant past. It does mean we are to manage this planet as good stewards for God. When God made Adam the reigning regent over Eden, He placed him in a garden to tend it and keep it. Genesis 2:15 says, “Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to tend and keep it.” This at least means that Adam was to keep it in decent order.
But the planet is also ours to use and enjoy. God made this planet to be the perfect home for man. He equipped it with all we would need to live and thrive. He gave us inquisitive and inventive minds to build and innovate. He gave us strong backs to mine the minerals. Earth is for us to use, not to worship.
Is there anything dangerous about their pantheistic paganism? Absolutely! We can see this from the very first Earth Day Proclamation penned by John McConnell, which stated the intended purpose as “world equality in economics as well as politics” which would “remove a basic cause of war” and “redirect the energies of industry and society from progress through products. . . to progress through harmony with Earth’s natural systems.” Interpretation? De-industialization and income redistribution.
Unfortunately, rather than desiring that all peoples be given the opportunity to raise the level of their standard of living, it intends to equalize us at the lowest common denominator. As a result, we get have furor over “global warming,” and the solution of sending us back to the Stone Age. The goal is to regulate industry into the ground. Congress in December of 1970, immediately following the first Earth Day, established the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which has done its best to “destroy America in the name of greening the planet,” according to Ben Shapiro.
In a lot of ways, Earth Day is a good reminder to us to be good stewards of the planet God has given us. Unfortunately, many of the leaders would lead us down disastrous paths to ruin.
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Rev. Daniel Packer has been a pastor for twenty years (Currently he serves as pastor of the Orrington Center Church in Orrington, Maine). He is an active proponent of Biblical morality. His e-mail address is email@example.com.