The Christian denomination that was so ostracized (or admired, depending on your perspective) for resisting liberal modern-day pleas to conform to contemporary culture has finally caved in on so-called “climate change.”
Maybe it shouldn’t surprise that the Southern Baptists have thrown in the towel on the environment. Having been beat up for so long on issues like homosexual marriage, evangelizing others’ religions, and wifely submission to their husbands, they were overdue for a compromise. Sure enough some who claim to represent conservative Christians, like Richard Cizik of the National Association of Evangelicals, have baited the hook with the tempting rhetorical phrase “creation care,” and apparently the Southern Baptist Convention’s discernment has melted away.
What is surprising is that the SBC, which prides itself on its claims of adherence to Biblical inerrancy and authority, has absolutely botched its interpretation about what man’s responsibility over the Earth is. Its position statement (featured at its brand new, Soylent Green-tinted website), titled the “Southern Baptist Environment and Climate Initiative,” makes so many absurd statements about planet protection (with allegedly supportive Bible citations) that you’d think you’re reading the beliefs of the Unitarian Universalists.p>Examples from SBECI: br> /p>
God’s command to tend and keep the earth (Genesis 2) did not pass away with the fall of man….Therefore, we humbly take responsibility for the damage that we have done to God’s cosmic revelation and pledge to take an unwavering stand to preserve and protect the creation over which we have been given responsibility by Almighty God Himself.br> This is perhaps the most misunderstood passage when it comes to so-called “creation care,” a term repeatedly invoked by leftist social gospel promoters to lay guilt trips on conservative evangelicals. Unfortunately now the SBC has bought it. First, God didn’t “command” man to “tend and keep the earth;” He ” put him into the garden of Eden ” (not the whole earth) “to cultivate and keep it” (Genesis 2:15). There is no obvious “command.”
And, both before and after the fall of man, the garden (and later the earth) was given for the man’s use and benefit. “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely,” God told Adam in Genesis 2:16. Verse 2:9 says, “God caused to grow every tree” good for food. Therefore, the natural resources were brought forth by God and He told Adam, “have at it!” (with one significant exception, of course). To summarize, there is no declaration by God (or within Scripture) to maintain the earth in some pristine, unspoiled, Garden-of-Eden-type condition. God gave for man to use as he saw fit — and after the fall He cursed it and explained that the work was going to get much harder.p>More from SBECI: br>
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