The Lamp

Where truth can be shared.

How ‘Urgent’ is Global Warming?

Posted by thelamp on February 1, 2007

A group of evangelical and congressional leaders – Democrat and Republican – are organizing a summit on environmental issues. According to some media accounts, the collaboration is an indication that scientists and Bible-believing Christians are putting aside passionate differences regarding the origin of life in order to save the Earth.

It’s more likely, though, that the appearance of common ground between scientists and the church will be exaggerated and exploited to advance political agendas. The issue of global warming, and the associated threat to the survival of life on this planet, is a concern House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., had hoped to address during the first 100 hours of the 110th Congress. Bills have already been introduced in both the House and the Senate.

Formation of the unified effort began last year with talks between the Rev. Rich Cizik, vice president for government affairs at the National Association of Evangelicals, and Eric Chivian, director of Harvard Medical School’s Center for Health and the Global Environment. Last week, representatives of the faith-science coalition released a statement titled “An Evangelical Call to Action,” which was endorsed by 28 signatories.

The Center for Moral Clarity admonishes believers to be cautious about responding to urgent calls to action for the wrong reasons.

“The creation marked the beautiful beginning of man’s communion with God and stewardship of the natural resources, over which humans were given dominion. Honoring the covenant between man and his Creator should be the motivation for responsible living,” said Pastor Rod Parsley. “Instead, the Chicken Little syndrome seems to be the inspiration.”

Fear that reckless human activity will result in passing on a barren wasteland for future generations has prompted the formation of this new alliance. Problem, is, the sky isn’t falling. In fact, many evangelicals dispute the veracity of claims that there is a growing consensus among their ranks on the urgency of global warming.

It’s troubling to think that church leaders may shelve advocacy for biblical marriage, abstinence or the sanctity of life because of an “evangelical call to action” to impose an excise tax on cars sold in the United States that are not alternative-fuelled vehicles – as H.R. 182, the TEAM up for Energy Independence Act, proposes.

This doesn’t mean that green house gases and the changing climate aren’t important. They are, but are they the most “urgent” concerns or just the most politically expedient?



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