Sunday, May 12, 2019

The Christian Thing to Do

Some people think being a Christian is defined by doing certain things. Two weeks ago, my hometown newspaper published an article about a former USDA employee who’s also the lay leader of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Phyllis Johnson claimed that addressing climate change is the “Christian thing to do.” I feel a need to respond to that exhortation.

Jesus said in John 14:15, “If you love Me, keep My commandments.” That would include feeding the hungry and looking out for our neighbors as Johnson pointed out. I also agree we should be good stewards of this planet’s resources. However, the fear-mongering over climate change can be disputed both logically and biblically. 

Over 40 years ago there were news reports of a coming ice age. Then there were worries about global warming. Some environmentalists talk about rising sea levels. If the latter is happening, then why aren’t masses of people moving away from coastal cities like New York, Miami, Los Angeles, and Honolulu? God-fearing people who are sincerely concerned about this planet’s future should remind themselves of what Genesis 8:22 says, “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, and day and night shall not cease.” Climate change has been happening for centuries but not because of human activity. 

This same article also quoted an ELCA bishop. Rev. Terry Brandt not only expressed concerns about climate change but also food and water shortages. God provided the earth with plenty of natural resources. Psalm 65:9 says, “You visit the earth and water it, You greatly enrich it; The river of God is full of water; You provide their grain, for so You have prepared it.” An increasing population doesn’t mean less food for everybody. More people would be available to plant seeds and grow crops to produce more food.

As an evangelist, I’m concerned if Phyllis Johnson and Terry Brandt really are Christians. During my childhood, I also attended an ELCA church. Unfortunately, the pastors there never taught me I must be born again (John 3:3, 7). One can go to church all their lives and do many good deeds but won’t make it into heaven unless they know the Lord. 

Colossians 3:2 says, “Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.” The Christian thing to do is to get saved and then obey the Great Commission so that more people receive eternal life.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” - Matthew 28:19

No comments:

Post a Comment