I will celebrate “Earth Day” and encourage Christians of all denominations and traditions to do so. Why? We believe that God created the earth, entrusting its care to man, and that He will one day recreate it in “the new heaven and new earth.” We are called to “witness” to our faith as believers.
Participation in this event is an opportunity to express love for God and care for what He has created. We evangelicals call this “creation care.” Care for the entire creation — the environment and “all creatures great and small” — is a biblical obligation (Gen. 2:15). We should walk in God’s ways (Deut. 10:12) and try to inspire people by offering broader vistas of thought and service.
Can we hear the voice of the biblical prophet Ezekiel: “Is it not enough for you to drink the water? Must you also muddy the rest with your feet?” Here’s a modern-day question: Is it enough for you to enjoy a pleasant climate? Must you destroy it? Is it not enough for you to enjoy the myriad of creatures? Must you extinguish them? Major segments of the earth are dying and we are responsible. Earth’s resources are not infinite.
A new moral awakening is sweeping our land. It’s a re-awakening to the heart of the Gospel ethic: to steward the natural world in order to preserve for ourselves and future generations a beautiful, rich, and healthy environment. It is “revision-ing” our lives. Taking part in “Earth Day” is a response to this new calling.
Thus, our family will worship together at National Cathedral in Washington with other environmental, scientific, and faith leaders and then enjoy the outdoors together. It’s all part of a faith commitment we’ve made to do everything in our power to preserve this precious gift the Creator has given us.
Richard Cizik is vice president for governmental affairs of the National Association of Evangelicals. His primary responsibilities include editing publications such as NAE Washington Insight, directing NAE’s Washington Insight Briefing and Christian Student Leadership Conferences, setting its policy direction on issues before Congress, the White House, and Supreme Court, and serving as a national spokesman on issues of concern to evangelicals.