Larry Schnapf course description

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VI. Conclusions:
A. Creation is to be managed for the benefit of the entire community. By properly managing the earth’s resources, we restore ourselves to the role God gave us. It also gives us the chance to model the redeeming qualities of Christ.
B. As residents of the city, we can still play a large role in preserving and protecting the environment. As consumers, we can create market pressures for products that are produced in ways that minimize harm to the earth. As users of products, we can promote recycling and reduce the amount of materials that we consume. In the workplace, we can try to influence the decisions made by the companies that we work for to make sure the protection of the environment as well as profits play a role in corporate decision-making.
C. Throughout the Bible, wilderness was a place where people went to find God. Spend time with God’s creation. Look at the beauty of the clouds, smell the sweet scent of the flowers, listen to the songs of the birds. By appreciating God’s creation, we can better feel his invisible presence. (Romans 1:19)
D. God’s creation can teach us how to live and helps us with our relationship with God. Creation obeys God’s design for them. The birds and the lilies do not worry or suffer anxiety. (Matthew 6:34). They trust God. When we do not trust God, we try to control things.
Matthew 6.34 also tells us to avoid fashioning our lives as a quest for material gain especially where such a pursuit may harm his Creation.
E. Creation groaned under the weight of man’s sin and was freed from the bondage of decay by the blood of Christ. (Romans 8:18). Human moral corruption has and can continue to have environmental implications
F. The church is not just an alienated body in a sinful world but is supposed to be a representation of Christ in a world created by God so that it bear witness to God’s glory.
G. God commands respect for his Creation. He tells us that both Humans and non-humans are equal in their ultimate task of serving God. However, there is a hierarchy of value where humans are allowed to use Creation in proper service to God.
H. It is “cheap grace” that does not require care for God’s creation or permits a level of environmental protection that does not require economic unpleasantness. The proper Christian environmental ethic means sacrificing the comfort of a materialistic lifestyle. It does not condone actions taken for pleasure or profit that results in degradation of the environment and degrogation of our responsibility as a steward of God’s Creation.
Jesus did not say to God in the Garden that it was inconvenient for him to die that week. We are to follow his model of humbleness as opposed to pridefully acquiring wealth and sacrifice instead of materialism.
I. Environmental protection should not be based simply on an appreciation of the right of creatures to exist or the right to profit from our surroundings. Stewardship is an essential element of our relationship with God and service to God.
J. Protection of the Earth is an aspect of reverance for God.
K. It is not enough to simply prevent harm but to maximize the good.
L. To live a life of righteousness, is to be in the right relationship with God and with others. When we fail to do good in these relationships, when we fail to carry out God’s commands to love others and to “take care or keep” his Creation, we are not living lives of righteousness.
M. Enviromental protection is a moral, not an economic issue. What we drive, the things we buy, the decisions we make that impact the environment are moral issues.
Copyright © 2002 Lawrence Schnapf

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