[forthright] Is Our Planet In Peril?

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From: Forthright Magazine <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Fri, 12 Oct 2007 15:31:15 -0500
Forthright Magazine
http://www.forthright.net
Straight to the Cross


COLUMN: Heavenly Connections

Is Our Planet In Peril?
by Tim Hall

News reports from Oslo, Norway this morning tell
us that former U.S. Vice President Albert Gore,
Jr. has won the Nobel Peace Prize. This
prestigious honor was given to Gore for his work
in promoting awareness of global warming. In a
statement responding to the Nobel Prize, Gore said
"We face a true planetary emergency. The climate
crisis is not a political issue, it is a moral and
spiritual challenge to all of humanity."

Without a doubt, man has the ability to cause
great damage to portions of the earth. Those who
have heard about the Dust Bowl in the American
plains during the 1930s know this to be true.
Great damage has been caused by wars, as well as
by environmental disasters. (The wreck of the
Exxon Valdez in 1989 had a significant impact on
parts of the Alaskan wilderness.) Man can make
areas of the earth beautiful or he can greatly mar
those same regions.

But is man capable of destroying this planet?

Peter teaches that God is the one who will bring
down the curtain on this globe. He wrote, "But the
day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night,
in which the heavens will pass away with a great
noise, and the elements will melt with fervent
heat; both the earth and the works that are in it
will be burned up" (2 Peter 3:10, NKJV). Man's
actions may leave craters and barren fields, but
God's word tells us that man is not the one who
will bring an end to life on earth.

Christians, however, must keep in mind another
principle that is also taught in God's word: We
are to be good stewards of what God has given us.
Peter also wrote these words: "As each one has
received a gift, minister it to one another, as
good stewards of the manifold grace of God" (1
Peter 4:10). While the passage primarily applies
to the spiritual gifts we've received, it is also
a broad principle that teaches us in other areas.
One gift God's grace has given us is a planet that
can be very hospitable to our needs. Neglect or
abuse of it can result in unfavorable
consequences.

We may not agree with environmentalists in all of
their claims about man's impact on earth, but man
does have a responsibility to carefully use what
God has given. Where we can make improvements in
this stewardship, we should. Unless the Lord comes
first, there will be others after us who also need
the resources we have enjoyed.

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