We in our era have accomplished something no other civilization would have considered possible — or desirable. We have taken human wastefulness and self-destruction to never-before-seen levels and we have distorted our scriptures to justify even celebrate — our own destruction.
Whether it is fracking (with its own legacy of toxic waste) the Keystone XL Pipeline (with its virtually guaranteed oil spills across prime farm land) accompanied by the largest population ever seen on the face of the earth — with its attendant garbage and sewage — we are seeing threats to our climate, food supply, economy, and quality of life on a level never seen before in human history.
Historically, theologies (and philosophy) have put a brake on human avarice, violence, and unbridled destruction of the environment.
Reflection and restraint, for millennia, have been the twin pillars of historic conservatism.
Somehow the voices of what had been commonsense conservatism have become the cheerleaders of environmental destruction in the name of progress and profit.
And our handy theology tells us that Jesus is coming back soon, and we, like some Mad Max version of a Biblical parable, know that our Lord is a ‘hard man’ (Matthew 25:24) and what he most wants most of all is a looted, shriveled, steaming toxic waste dump when he returns.
“God is going to burn it up anyway” these apocalyptic apologists tell me.
And with any end-times philosophy, they better be right.
I’m just glad previous generations didn’t hold to this philosophy.
Morf Morford considers himself a free-range Christian who is convinced that God expects far more of us than we can ever imagine, but somehow thinks God knows more than we do. To pay his bills, he’s been a teacher for adults (including those in his local county jail) in a variety of setting including Tribal colleges, vocational schools, and at the university level in the People’s Republic of China. Within an academic context, he also writes an irreverent ESL blog and for the Burnside Writers Collective.
Image: Burning Earth, Igor Zh. / Shutterstock.com