Today is Earth Day, and that got me wondering what the Bible has to say about caring for the earth. So I googled that exact question, “What does the Bible say about caring for the earth?” And this is what I found …
Genesis 2:15 … “The Lord God put the man in the Garden of Eden to care for it and work it.”
Genesis 1:28 … “And God blessed them. And God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
My Study Bible explains the second verse this way: To be “masters over” something is to have absolute authority and control over it. God has ultimate rule over the earth, and he exercises his authority with loving care. When God delegated some of his authority to the human race, he expected us to take responsibility for the environment and the other creatures that share our planet. We must not be careless and wasteful as we fulfill this charge. God was careful how he made this earth. We must not be careless about how we take care of it.”
First of all, it was interesting to note that God’s instructions to us regarding our caring for the earth is given to us in the very first chapters of the Bible. Maybe that tells us something about how important our “stewardship” of the earth actually is. And when you think of it in terms of God “delegating” some of the responsibility for caring for our planet, well, it seems to take on a greater importance.
Being a farm girl, who came from generations of farmers, I witnessed first-hand the care they took with their land. I’m not talking about the big, mega farms that are common today. I’m talking about the regular, farm-in-the-family-for-generations-farmer. Sure, caring for the land had a direct effect on the living they made. But most farmers I know have “something” instilled in them that makes them love “the land.” The farmers I knew were conservationists before the term or notion became popular. Composting, getting the most use out of everything before recycling it or throwing it away, etc.
As I get older, this idea of caring for our earth seems to be becoming a little more important. Maybe that’s because I have kids who are getting older and having kids of their own. What will the earth be like when they are older?I worry about whether what will happen to our water supply. Will the farmers that provide our food and take care of a ever-shrinking part of our world, survive?
So what can you do to take on some of that “delegated responsibility?” I’ve tried to keep all electrical appliances unplugged if I’m not using them, to turn on lights only when I really have to and to try to remember to turn them off when I leave a room (ok, I think that one’s “ingrained” from childhood! 🙂 and to use less water. I know Lance and Sarah have taken steps to install a rain barrel to capture rain water for use in their yard.
Let us know what YOU have done or plan to do as one of God’s “earth stewards.”