The Common Good

'The Earth is the Lord's and all that is in it'

100422-earthToday is Earth Day, an occasion for marking our responsibility to care for our world and the environment. It seems trite to have just one day to remind ourselves of the importance of this -- though the same could be (and often is) said about Father's Day, Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, Christmas, etc. We should always be aware of how we ought to be good stewards of the world and the resources God has entrusted to us; not just one day a year.

Related Reading

Take Action on This Issue

Circle of Protection for a Moral Budget

A pledge by church leaders from diverse theological and political beliefs who have come together to form a Circle of Protection around programs that serve the most vulnerable in our nation and around the world.

Earlier this week, a gray whale that died after stranding on a Seattle beach was discovered to have "a surprising amount of human debris" in its stomach, including more than 20 plastic bags, small towels, surgical gloves, plastic pieces, duct tape, a pair of sweat pants, and a golf ball.

But our environmental profligacy doesn't just affect animals. It disproportionately impacts the poorest and most vulnerable -- those who are least responsible for 'contributing' harmful pollutants into our land, air, and oceans often end up bearing the brunt of their effects. Take Bangladesh, for example, one of the poorest countries in the world -- and widely recognized as being one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change.

Just because we may not see the effects of climate change, doesn't mean it's not happening. And when those Jesus called "the least of these" are being adversely affected by our decisions -- on an individual level and a systemic level (and everywhere in between) -- we are likewise called to defend them -- on an individual and a systemic level (and everywhere in between). For, as the author of Proverbs reminds us: "Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker" (14:31).

This Earth Day, though, we have opportunities not only to remember our responsibility to care for creation -- check out Earth Day Network -- but also to celebrate the goodness of creation. This Sunday, April 25, there'll be a climate rally (featuring live music from Sting and John Legend, among others) on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., for those who are able to get there!

"The earth is the Lord's and all that is in it, the world, and those who live in it." (Psalm 24:1)

+Click here to stand with the poor on climate change.

portrait-justin-fungJustin Fung is the policy and organizing assistant for Sojourners. A graduate of Fuller Theological Seminary, he also blogs regularly at Gershom's Journal.

Sojourners relies on the support of readers like you to sustain our message and ministry.

Related Stories


Like what you're reading? Get Sojourners E-Mail updates!

Sojourners Comment Community Covenant

I will express myself with civility, courtesy, and respect for every member of the Sojourners online community, especially toward those with whom I disagree, even if I feel disrespected by them. (Romans 12:17-21)

I will express my disagreements with other community members' ideas without insulting, mocking, or slandering them personally. (Matthew 5:22)

I will not exaggerate others' beliefs nor make unfounded prejudicial assumptions based on labels, categories, or stereotypes. I will always extend the benefit of the doubt. (Ephesians 4:29)

I will hold others accountable by clicking "report" on comments that violate these principles, based not on what ideas are expressed but on how they're expressed. (2 Thessalonians 3:13-15)

I understand that comments reported as abusive are reviewed by Sojourners staff and are subject to removal. Repeat offenders will be blocked from making further comments. (Proverbs 18:7)