Friday, July 02, 2010

Creation Care

I am not especially thrilled with political subjects entering the religious arena. However, some issues are important enough to make God's view known.

The Wesleyan Church is the result of God's people taking a stand on a political matter that was more than politics: Slavery. The Wesleyan Methodists believed that slavery was wrong to the point of sin. Therefore, though it was a political issue, it was also a God-issue. Jesus died to save all of mankind, and no one should be considered property - not minorities, not women, not poor people.

I am a firm believer that the time comes when the church must take a stand on behalf of mankind; the protection of people, for which Jesus died.

Recently, however, a movement has arisen among the evangelical church that has me troubled.

There are those who are teaching that Jesus died to redeem all of creation, not just mankind. They seem to believe that when Jesus was on the cross, his mind was not only fixed on saving people, but those sweat drops of blood were also for the trees and the animals. Non-human creation brought Immanuel to us as much as humans.

This is not shown in the great commission, in the sermons recorded in the New Testament, or in Jesus' own statements of why he came. It doesn't seem to have much bearing in Paul's passionate letters to the churches he planted, or Jesus' own prayer recorded in John 17.

There is certainly a need to treat all of creation with respect of its Creator. No one should be abusing animals or poisoning water supplies. There is no good reason to litter or bury toxic chemicals in backyards.

But the church has been called, and spiritually equipped, to reach lost people. We are supposed to baptize them and teach them to obey everything Jesus commanded.

We have been commanded to love the Lordl and love one another. There is no Great Creation Commission.

Respect creation, but love and serve the Creator, and His image on earth: Mankind.

Any thoughts?