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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Christian Environmentalist Virtue of Patience

Corinthians 1:13 says love is patient. This Christian virtue is also very useful to environmentalists. It takes patience to be green and to reduce your impact on the planet. Here are some reasons why:
- It takes patience to grow food in your backyard garden
- It takes patience to grow plants organically
- It takes patience to cook from scratch
- It takes patience to find products with as little packaging as possible
- It takes patience to learn about and buy ethical products
- It takes patience to learn how to reduce your environmental impact
- It takes patience to gently shepherd an insect out of your home instead of killing it
- It takes patience to work with animals
- It takes patience to walk through the bush
- It takes patience to participate in weeding your local reserve
- It takes patience to convince your church to become greener
- It takes patience to find the best deal on solar panels
- It takes patience to read books about environmental issues and keep up with the news
- It takes patience to wait for the government to act on environmental issues like climate change
Patience is an indispensible virtue for the Christian Environmentalist.

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Important Lessons from the Bible

Why Jesus came:
"that the world might be saved through him"
John 3:17

Who Jesus is going to use to save the world:
"For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God."
Romans 8:19

Our role on earth:
"The LORD God put the man in the Garden of Eden to take care of it and to look after it."
Genesis 2:15

The Five Pillars of A Christian Theology of Sustainability

1. God is the creator, sustainer and redeemer of creation.

2. Covenantal Stewardship (we have a covenant with God as stewards of the earth).

3. The creation-fall-redemption paradigm (God made a good world; human failure broke the relationships between god, man and creation; Christ provides hope for all creation).

4.Bodily resurrection(we will rise with bodies, not as spirits)

5.New Creation (a new Heaven and new Earth refers to a renewal and an earthing of heaven, not starting over).

Adapted from When Enough is Enough: A Christian Framework for Environmental Sustainability, Edited by R.J. Berry, Published by Inter-Varsity Press, 2007, Nottingham p43+