Europe and the environment

The First Commandment

Pollarding a willow A Rocha Zwolle (Rogier Bos) web

According to the creation narrative in Genesis 1, the very first commandment that God gave was to birds, whales, fish and other creatures to “be fruitful and multiply”, to fill the seas and skies with God’s creatures (Gen. 1:22). His first commandment to humans was to “fill the earth and subdue it” (Gen. 1:28).

For most of human history the subjection of creation was a daily struggle for farmers, herders and every human, as they toiled against the awesome power of nature. The industrial revolution changed all that, and today global ecosystems are increasingly “subject” to human influence in all sorts of negative ways.

It is only very recently that evangelical Christians have woken up to the part that Creation Care has in God’s mission. Chris Walley of A Rocha provides our lead article—a case for evangelicals to engage in environmental conservation then Darrell Jackson reviews mission agency engagement with this issue.

We then focus more specifically on Europe. Martin Hodson of The John Ray Initiative gives an overview of the impact of climate change on Europe, and I then give a national example, setting out the particular challenges of climate change for Spain. Jo Appleton concludes this edition of Vista by reviewing attitudes to the environment among Europeans.

We pray this edition of Vista  challenges you to think again about God’s first commandment to us.

Download Vista Issue 24 May 2016

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