Or, so says Drew Sandlin, in a letter to Oklahoma Christian University’s student newspaper, ironically named Talon.
When I was a kid, I had an uncle who was a Franciscan Priest. I come from a long line of priests and nuns, mostly Franciscan. That’s why I’m good with animals. Anyway, I liked this Uncle because he lived in foreign lands, fished, was a ham (I was a budding ham myself) and he was kind of exotic, being a priest and all.
Someday, I thought, I’d be a priest too. But I also had other interests, and some times there was a conflict….
One day I made mention of the fact that we were cutting down too much of the forests. This was in the days when the six million acre Adirondack Park was being contemplated, and deforestation was just getting underway in the Pacific Northwest, but it wasn’t really as big of an issue in those days as the much more visible problem of air pollution.
Anyway, I expressed an interest in saving the trees and I got whacked by Uncle priest. As he hit me, he reminded me that the trees are there to serve man, and that god wanted man to “… rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth…” and shit.
A year or two later, when Earth Day was invented, I remembered back on that event and moved tangibly in the direction of Atheism.
These memories emerged on reading a letter from Drew Sandlin to the Oklahoma Christian University’s student newspaper, in which Sandlin toys with the idea that the environmental movement is a distraction from being a good Christian. While he stops short of advocating intentional destruction of the environment that god puts in our hands (Clause 1:26 of the Genesis Contract), he does his very best to denigrate the environmental movement and green activities in general.
I recently received an email asking me to fill out a survey evaluating the campus recycling program. …[and]… a thought occurred to me: “Why are we so concerned about recycling or how green our campus is?”
Over the past few weeks, there’s been some hubbub over how environmentally friendly our campus is, and how much energy each student here uses. To be quite honest, I find it a bit disturbing.
.. ah sorry to interrupt. When I read this, the first thought that came to me is “This guy is a neocon right winger and he’s about to make an excuse for using more fossil fuel. Probably plans to work for the oil companies after graduation. Probably a local kid. Everybody in Oklahoma owns at least one oil lease, right?” … ok, sorry, back to the letter…
I don’t know if we’ve thought about consulting God’s word on this subject, but it [sic] has some interesting things to say about our relationship with the earth. Since God created it, it’s only fair to see what he planned for us to do with it.
In Genesis chapter 1:26, God clearly puts man in charge of the earth…
If God gave us rule over the earth, there is absolutely no need to “save” anything.
Interesting. This is like a baby sitter … in answer to the hysterical query from the parents “Where did you put our baby!” … “Hey, like, I was in charge, man, in charge of the baby. What I do with it is kinda like, well, like, whatever, ya know?”
I find this whole “Green” movement dangerously secular in nature. Romans 1:25 reads: “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator.”
Well. The premise comes in the middle of the letter. A witch hunt for that which may be secular.
I wonder how many students at Oklahoma Christian University feel a greater obligation to the doctrine of “recycling” or “save the earth” than they do to the doctrine of baptism? I hope that they are few and far between.
The fact of the matter is this, and this simply: this earth is just a temporary house that we humans will live in for a little while until God burns it all up. There is no point in trying to save it.
… where do I start…
The overarching justification of the environmental movement is to rationally manage the earth’s resources … there are problems with doctrine to be sure (we can discuss that another time). But the contrast is clear. There is a reason to recycle, scrub the air coming out of a coal plant, save energy, seek energy sources that do not release fossil carbon, and so on. In contract, baptism is based on doctrine. This is a letter to a college newspaper. Surely, it is obvious why this is all quite troubling…
There is no point in trying to save the earth because the apocalypse is on the way. You understand, yes, that THIS is why so many Americans were about to move to Canada in the event Sarah Palin was elevated to power.
I realize that all of this is terribly politically incorrect. To be fair, recycling, if it is cost effective and done to keep our campus clean or to make a few dollars here and there for a good cause, is not a bad thing.
I’m not trying to say that it’s okay to litter, and that picking up trash on the ground is a sin. It becomes a bad thing when we let it eclipse the real work that God has put us here to do.
We need to stop trying to “save the planet” and start worshipping the God that created it. Can you imagine how much more effective we as Christians could be if we stopped wasting our time trying to be “green” and started doing some real work for God?
This is actually the most nefarious part of the whole letter. This is where the author does the two-step, sets up the situation so later he can deny or affirm whichever point of view is appropriate at the time. This is the first part of a two part lie. This is the windup, and later on, he’ll give you the pitch.
Why not take the resources that are being used to see how “green” our campus is through surveys and polls and allocate them for the Wishing Well program?…
… oh. I guess this was a pitch for money. A pitch for money from a christian yahoo holier than thou fundamentalist. Should have seen that coming.
I clipped the last few paragraphs, but you can read the whole thing here. And comment, if you like.
Hat tip: Jason.