In an eco-friendly coincidence, I came across this chapter in Wendell Berry’s Sex, Economy, Freedom and Community (1992) just hours after posting my last green comment. Entitled “Christianity and the Survival of Creation,” Berry devotes his chapter to how and why Christianity has fallen short on caring for our world. If you’re interested, please find the book (I know it’s in the Baylor Library for all you blogger-bears). For now, I’ll leave you with this:
We will discover that for these reasons our destruction of nature is not just bad stewardship, or stupid economics, or a betrayal of family responsibilty; it is the most horrid blasphemy. It is flinging God’s gifts into His face, as if they were of no worth beyond that assigned to them by our destruction of them. To Dante, “despising Nature and her goodness” was a violence against God. We have no entitlement from the Bible to exterminate or permantently destroy or hold in contempt anything on the earth or in the heavens above it or in the waters beneath it. We have the right to use the gifts of nature but not to ruin or waste them. We have the right to use what we need but no more…
The Bible leaves no doubt at all about the sanctity of the act of world-making, or of the world that was made, or of creaturely or bodily life in this world. We are holy creatures living among other holy creatures in a world that is holy. Some people know this, and some do not. Nobody, of course, knows this all the time. But what keeps it from being far better known than it is? Why is it apparently unknown to millions of professed students of the Bible? How can modern Christianity have so solemnly folded its hands while so much of the work of God was and is being destroyed?
There is so much goodness in this chapter, I don’t know where to start. I think I’m just going to go home and snuggle with my cat. That’s loving on creation, right?