Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Gospel confusion in Christian environmentalism

World magazineBoth Joel Garreau, a professor of law, culture, and values at Arizona State University, and Paul H. Rubin, a professor of economics at Emory University, have written articles titled “Environmentalism as religion,” pointing out how environmentalists tend to borrow from other established faiths.

. . . But while many now regard environmentalism as a separate religion, it is its growing influence on Christianity and its intentional infiltration of churches—targeting youth especially, through organizations like Interfaith Power & Light—that should gain our attention. And it’s not only liberal Christians who are becoming religious environmentalists—some professed evangelicals are also joining their ranks.

. . . As Martin Luther long ago taught in launching the Reformation, the grammar of the gospel is indicative—it states what God has done. The grammar of the law is imperative—it states what God requires us to do. “Take good care of the Earth” is imperative. It’s a true obligation, but that’s precisely what makes it law, not gospel. “Christ died for our sins, was buried, and rose again from the dead” is indicative. It’s gospel.

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