What are you doing to Save the World?
Have you noticed this language being used about climate change again recently? I have seen it on billboards and in newspaper articles. I have seen it in web searches and online articles. In a recent student march it featured again.
We need to save our world!
Slogans such as “Wake up and Save our Future” are becoming increasingly prevalent (again). They roll off the tongue of Christians and atheists alike as many have genuine concern for the the impact of human life on our planet. My concern is that the eschatology that goes with it is completely contrary to biblical thinking. My excitement is that this language provides you with an easy opportunity to share the Gospel.
Eschatology (put simply) is “what’s going to happen at the end”. Climate change eschatology says that humans are determining, by their inaction, when the planet is going to die and humans, by taking action, can stop that from happening. Salvation by human works. The Bible teaches almost the exact opposite.
All time is in God’s hands and he determined both the beginning of earthly life and he will determine the end. Moreover, this planet we live on will be done away with by God at a time of his choosing (Matt 5:18, 2 Peter 3:10-11, Rev 21:1-4). We cannot save the planet and we cannot ensure our future on this planet. Those decisions are all in God’s hands and he is being patient with the world so that more people might be saved (2 Peter 3:9). God’s focus, God’s greatest agenda for the world is that he might be reconciled with humans. Salvation by God’s will and grace.
To this end, climate change can be one great opportunity for idolatry, error and misguided decision making. Christian people need to be careful that they don’t hide God’s greatest plan for humanity behind humanity’s current greatest plan. Perhaps this might start with choosing different language to use about why you are concerned about the climate. Please stop using “save” language and please never call God “Mother Nature”! It may also mean we need to think carefully about our individual purpose for life on earth and not buy in thoughtlessly to climate change ideology.
But all this excites me. Have you noticed that many, many people are talking about saving the world. Given that is God’s agenda for the world (John 3:16) the opportunities to introduce the Gospel into conversations about climate change are endless. You could inject Jesus into a conversation by saying: “Do you know the bible teaches that God also desires to save the world?” or “God’s plans to fix our world are bigger than ours could ever be!” or simply, “Where do you think God’s plans fit into all this?”
Can I suggest you begin shifting your thinking about all this? I know there are various views about whether climate change is something to worry about – my concern is that whatever your view, Christian people will end up promoting a Gospel that is no Gospel at all by adopting the climate change language or ideology the world promotes or never taking opportunities to share the Gospel with those concerned about it.
Let us be those who promote Christ – his works, his world, his wisdom.