Sunday, September 02, 2007

"Project Earth: Preserving the World God Created"

Read this article and think...no skimming! LOL:

http://www.asa3.org/ASA/PSCF/1998/PSCF3-98Ball.html

Excerpt:


This article explores how the concepts of ecology are presented and utilized in the evangelical Protestant response to the ecological crisis. It finds that there are seven basic themes in the literature: (1) etymological discussions; (2) the concepts of interdependence and balance; (3) cycles and energy flow; (4) food chain/food web/ecological pyramid; (5) carrying capacity; (6) the idea that humans are the disrupters of "nature's" balance; and (7) the contrary idea that humans are a part of the ecosystem. In light of these themes, I make several observations. One is that the summarized findings of ecology becomes the latest version of natural theology: God's will is for each ecosystem to be a climax ecosystem which never declines. If this is the case, then western agriculture, industry, and the use of much technology will have to be severely curtailed--a situation unacceptable to most evangelical Protestants.

Many scholars have argued that western culture, infused with a Christian understanding of the world, provided a nurturing environment for the development of science. The belief in a purposeful God, the argument goes, who gave order and coherence to the universe allowed scientists to assume that they could discover such order, such "laws." God made a world which was consistent and real, and therefore predictable. The discipline of ecology has also benefited from Christian assumptions embedded in western culture. By the time ecology began to develop as a scientific discipline, however, these assumptions had become "secularized," or stripped of their God-talk. In other words, early ecologists did not have to believe in a Christian God to assume that the world was orderly, consistent, real, and predictable. These beliefs had become cultural norms taken for granted by everyone in the West; they could be understood by an ecologist as simply similarities between Christianity and science, rather than shared beliefs which have their "genesis" in Christian doctrine.

Not surprisingly, it is these assumptions that evangelical Protestants emphasize when informing their audience about the concept of ecology.1 Furthermore, probably in part because of these shared assumptions, the languages of ecology and theology are mixed together without any serious discussion about what the potential differences could be--not so much a synthesis as a bricolage. This article is an attempt to describe and analyze the concept of ecology contained in the evangelical Protestant response to the ecological crisis, and to raise questions about its use.
____________________________________________________________________________

I have a book entitled "Project Earth: Preserving the World God Created" ,

which is awesome on this topic. It's by a bloke by the name of Willaim Badke which has also written other interesting books and has a blog here:

http://badkemeaningofeverything.blogspot.com/

another link on his work: http://www.meaningofeverything.com/

Here are some other references (skimming allowed):

http://www.earthcareonline.org/popularbooks.html

For more on these vital topics also visit these posts:

The Misuse of "Radah" (dominion)

A Biblical View of the Environment

A Christian View of the Environment


The Meaning of Genesis


Why Are We Here?

Quantum Freewill, the Breath and Spirit of God...

Doing Lunch With The Almighty


Poverty, Pollution and Environmental Racism

Eleven Inherent rules of Corporate Behavior

Is God Green?

Thank You For This Earth


Indigenous Mind


> From: S. Starr
> To: D.S. Martin
> Subject: Glory
> Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2006 21:28:23 -0500
>
> If creation is responsive to God, if it praises him, then it bears
> witness to some crucial realities. Creation, in fact, bears witness to at
> least four realities - That God is glorious, that God wants to nurture what
> he has made, that human beings carry a penalty for walking away from God and
> his plan for them, and that we live in a precarious universe. These might
> seem like contradictions, but they're not.
>
> Let's start with God's glory. Ever wonder why so many people on the
> weekends leave the cities to find somewhere in unspoiled nature that they
> can call home for a few hours? What are they looking for? When we view it
> with eyes that see beyond the routine, creation speaks enormous volumes
> about the complexity, greatness, and wondrous power of the Creator. That's
> why, standing in front of an unexpected waterfall or coming upon a deer in
> the woods, we get the urge to worship. Nature constantly points us beyond
> itself to the One who made it, saying, "See! See the One who's responsible
> for all of this."
>
> People who escape to the great outdoors may not tell you that they're doing
> it to find God. But that is who they find.

From: D.S. Martin
Sent : Thursday, April 27, 2006 1:01 PM
To : "S. Starr"
Subject : RE: Glory

I think that Mr. Eldridge (John Eldrige author of Wild At Heart and others) made use of this type of example.

It is the Creator, by His Holy Spirit, unexpectedly reaching into my soul and plucking the "Holy Chord" and as it resonates through my heart, mind and soul I will feel the urge to fall on my knees and just cry, but, not a sad cry.

This happens just as Eldridge describes it, unexpectedly; maybe a sunrise that seems to turn some surreal and unknown color that could not be duplicated on any artist's palate no matter how many times that he tried , or sometimes when we sing a song in church that touches at the love of God and the harmony of the body all combine in a glorious crescendo.

This feeling is one of those things that I try to choke down and suffocate, if I am not alone. I sometimes think that I should just let go; that maybe I'm quenching the Holy Spirit.
DSM

5 comments:

S. Starr said...

>From: S. Starr
> To: D.S. Martin
> Subject: RE: Glory
> Date: Thu, 27 Apr 2006 14:02:49 -0500
>
> Yeah....lke I said Mr. Badke does this topic right. I understand what you are saying here. With me I have quit trying to stifle it. I have tried to share the feeling and done a terrible job of it apparently. I cannot go back to the drab world of before..so its like being stuck between worlds..that short story I wrote "Raw Revelations.." is basically about this. I call it "the great rift".

S. Starr said...

(from the vault of Quantum Contemplations)

DSM responds:

I wonder if this is what happened at the "burning bush"?

I know that we in the Church feel like it's a sin of sacrilege to "diminish" the Lord's miracles. But, the way I see it, everything that we see in nature is a miracle. Therefore, who's to say that the bush didn't have one of those surreal colors that simply couldn't be described in any other way but to say that it burned but was not consumed. This is perceiving with Spiritual eyes.

This does not diminish the power of God, but rather it acknowledges His work in a different Spiritual way, and could be true of many of the natural miracles.

I would not say that God cannot act outside of the Laws of nature. But, the examples that we see daily, of God's work within nature, are enough to give pause to what we understand from scripture.

This point is all the more real when you attempt to teach your children about Jesus, God the Father, Holy Spirit, heaven, etc. You may remember the flannel boards that were used in the kids classes when we were growing up. The illustrations were very simple, but, that simplicity was demanded by the cognitive experience of the audience. The flannel depiction was not wrong, but, it was not actual either. It simply represented to we, the children, the greater truth that lay behind the representation on the board.

All that said, I think that the words of the Bible are God's use of a flannel board for adults.

Just, more hors d'oeuvres for contemplation.

DSM

S. Starr said...

good analogy!!

S. Starr said...

(from the vault of Quantum Contemplations)

DSM responds:

This idea could remove so many barriers for we who believe.

Think about the times that you have heard the position expressed that 'God doesn't act the same way with mankind, as He did prior to Jesus.'I grew up hearing this to answers about miracles and visions (and demons, [that's for another discussion]). You've made a very fine point of the visions that God brings to you.

When we see God working through creation on a moment by moment basis, God's power is no longer reserved for some long haired camel jockeys from 2000 years ago.

When I can imagine that God will speak to me through His creation then God will indeed speak to me just as He did with Abraham, Moses, Jacob, et. al.

It is no longer a matter of 'if God wants to speak to me, I need to see a literal flame coming from my nandina domectica compacta (providing there are no hoodlums nearby and the burn ban has been lifted by Governor Henry) out there by the driveway, and unless I see that, I will know that God is no longer working the same as he did in the Old Testament'

However, instead now I can say;

"you know the other evening I stepped out on the back porch when the storms were coming up from the west and that amazing phenomenon of a clockwise spinning tornado at the El Reno Airport, and it was indescribable, how the sky was boiling with an amazing orange, purple, and reddish gold fire but was not consumed and I fell to my knees because I knew that I was in the presence of God and He spoke to me and told me to take this faithfully bold step in my life, but I argued with Him long and hard, of why this idea of His was not going to work, then finally after several minutes I prevailed over Him and He left me alone with my victory.... such as it was."



This is a very different outlook. Is it not?

This outlook seems to make me far more culpable to my professed faith, than does the former teaching. With this outlook I see God through His witness. He has my attention because I expect His presence. When He speaks to me, I know, to whom I am answering.

And when I win, I know, oh... how I know, just how much I've lost.

God please don't let me prevail.

Just another witness for HIM,

DSM

S. Starr said...

And I have selectively forgotten as well... If you look at my latest posts I have decided to finally cut to the chase somewhat.

This is a BIIIIIG step.

GULP