As all of you know, yesterday was Earth Day. It is a day that we are encouraged to have awareness for how we treat and take care of our home planet.
However, sometimes I feel like as Christians we tend to ignore the subject of taking care of the earth because it's more of a “Liberal Thing”. I will admit there were quite a few things that have given caring for the earth a bad name. Yet, I think it is something that we must also do.
Everything in our natural world was created by God for us. Genesis 1:26 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 over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.”
And so says verse 28: “And God blessed them. And God said to them, 'Be fruitful and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
So, we see that God told us that we are in charge of the earth. So, that would mean we could do whatever we wanted, right? I mean, can we just kill as many animals as we want and waste what we want?
Proverbs 12:10 says, "Whoever is righteous has regard for his beast. But the mercy of the wicked is cruel."
And, "Know well the condition of your flocks, and give attention to your herds." (Proverbs 27:23)
We see here that it is very wrong to treat animals cruelly. Animals were given to us from God for food, and companionship; yet, we see that we don't need to torture or prolong suffering.
There are other verses that discuss treating animals with respect (Leviticus 22:27-28, Deuteronomy 22:6-7).
We also see how God reprimanded Balaam in Numbers 22:32-33 for not only disobeying God, but God also got onto him for abusing his donkey-when the donkey saved his life.
The bible also implies many places not to be wasteful with the blessings God has given us. When we become wasteful with the blessings of God, we are, in way, taking it for granted and not showing thankfulness for it (Luke 16:1-9, Luke 15:11-16). This could also go for how some people in the world over hunt animals, or cut down so many trees without replanting.
When you study ecology and how everything is set up in the natural world, it's easy to see how one extinction of a plant or animal can cause such a negative affect on everything else. For instance, if a species of frog died out somewhere, there could be a huge increase of mosquitoes and other biting insects, raising the potential for even more disease. Or, if a plant died out that was a huge source of food for a particular animal, that animal too could die out. It causes a ripple effect.
Extinction has been occurring for thousands of years. However, that doesn't mean we should encourage it or just do nothing. God loves all of his creation, and deemed it "good" in Genesis. While we have been given charge over the natural world in which we live, that doesn't mean we can just go and kill everything and expect God to be pleased with wasting it all away. With great power comes great responsibility.
Recently, a woman was arrested in our county for the mistreatment of animals. The shocking thing was that she was running a place that was supposed to be a safe haven for animals without a home. There were dead animal carcasses apparently in her home and all over the place, as well as sick and dying ones.
Based on some of the verses above, do you think God was pleased with how this woman was treating the animals supposed to be under her care? No!
While I admit taking care of our natural world has been given a bad name by certain people and movements, it's still something that we should care about. If someone is doing something disrespectful to the creation that God has bestowed upon us, we SHOULD be upset about it! We as Christians can't ignore issues that must be discussed and taken care of. Teach your children to take care of and be gentle to animals. Teach them not to be wasteful. God gave this world to us to take care of, and take care of it we must!