Bible Prophecy and Environmentalism

Destroying the World
The past several years, prophecy-minded Christians have frequently been attacked by liberal groups for being hostile to the environment. We are portrayed as being so concerned about heavenly matters that we support decisions that lead to environmental degradation.

Some folks on the extreme left have even directly blamed sites like Rapture Ready for wanting to destroy the earth. Commentator Bill Moyer was recently giving a speech at Harvard Medical School, and during his address, he revealed a common misconception liberals have about Bible prophecy.

According to Mr. Moyers, people who agree with RR feel called to help bring about a global calamity. “Millions of Christian fundamentalists believe that environmental destruction is not only to be disregarded but actually welcomed – even hastened – as a sign of the coming apocalypse.”

I don’t know of any Christian group that actively calls for environmental destruction. We all have to live on the same planet and breathe the same air. It is in our common interest to have a world free of deadly contaminants.

God gave man dominion over the earth, and we are to be good stewards of what has been entrusted into our hands. If we fundamentalists are any less optimistic about environmental issues than Moyers, it is because we are aware of the earth’s ultimate fate.

The Fallacy of the Environmental Movement
The environmentalism we see today has roots in the earlier conservationist and preservationist movements. Leaders like Theodore Roosevelt and Gifford Pinchot feared we were “exhausting our natural resources.” Roosevelt helped establish several parks and federal reserves. Starting in the 1960s, activists added a neo-Marxist theology to various ecological concerns, creating the modern environmentalist movement.

This utopian visions that environmentalists try to convey today have little do with saving the earth. Their views on environmental issues are heavily tied to political agendas and are often counterproductive to the causes they claim to represent.

One of their most error-filled assertions is the idea that technology has lowered our quality of life. They believe if we could just turn back the hands of time to the days before industrialization, we would find that utopian world.

Any fair examination of history will reveal that innovation has been very beneficial to mankind. Advancements in science are directly responsible for unprecedented improvements in human health, nutrition, and life expectancy. The life expectancy didn’t go from 45 years in the Middle Ages to 77 years today because of poisons from man-made chemicals.

I visited a number of environmentalist websites and I found that the majority are fixated on assigning blame and forever being in the opposition on hot button issues. Groups like Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, Natural Resources Defense Council, Environmental Defense Fund, and Ruckus Society specialize in highlighting the problems, while offering no solutions.

If they were to take a stand on a thorny issue, they might have to commit themselves to a workable solution. Sometime the wisdom of Solomon is required to find a resolution to an environmental dilemma that weighs the needs of man vs. the protection of nature.

Nuclear Nuttiness
Nuclear power is a very good example of how the environmental movement uses pseudo-science allegations to win support. Because most people don”t understand how atomic energy works, it is easy for environmentalists to use fear tactics to turn the public against all things nuclear.

Nuclear power’s safety record can speak for itself. In the 49 years that we’ve had commercial nuclear power in North America, there has never been a single fatality directly related to nuclear energy. Of the few reported accidents at nuclear reactors, no incident has ever breached the containment vessel.

Coal, the most widely used method of generating power in America, has not had such a spotless record. Each year, thousands of people die from coal-related mining accidents and health issues. In China, as many as 20,000 die each year from the mining of coal.

As a result of the oil shock of 1970s, over 129 nuclear reactors went into the planning stages. When the #2 reactor at Three Mile Island suffered a partial core meltdown in 1979, the nuclear industry when into a tailspin. Environmentalists worked endlessly to erect financial and regulatory hurdles that made it impossible for any new reactors to gain an operating license.

The nation of France has proven the reliability of nuclear technology. Because that nation has few energy resources, the French government pushed ahead with its atomic program. Currently, France derives 75 percent of its electricity from nuclear energy. France is also the world’s largest electricity exporter.

Now that global warming has become a major concern, you would think environmentalists would be willing to turn the Grand Canyon into a uranium mine to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Judging by their fanatic disdain for anything with a half-life, the Statue of Liberty would have to be up to her torch in glacier melt before they would have any second thoughts about nuclear energy.

Radioactive waste is key area where environmentalists attack nuclear power. Currently, 42,000 tons of high-level waste are being stored at 126 temporary sites around the nation. This material just builds up because environmental red tape has prevented the construction of a long-term store facility.

For the past 28 years, the U.S. Department of Energy has been preparing a site in Yucca Mountain, Nevada to be the permanent resting place for the nation’s nuclear waste. Yucca Mountain is located in a remote desert in Nye County, Nevada. It is about 100 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

The project has so far cost $7 billion, and it will not be open until 2012 at the earliest. The main factor delaying this elaborate hole in the ground is the desire for the site to be able to contain radioactive waste for more than 100,000 years.

Long before the waste would ever get a chance to reach the surface, our nation would be devastated by a series of geological disasters. The Yellowstone caldera will someday explode with a force up to 2,500 times the magnitude of the 1980 Mount St. Helen’s eruption. A full-scale eruption of the Yellowstone caldera would instantly kill millions of people and cause catastrophic climatic change around the globe.

It’s certainly not safe to have waste stored at 129 facilities. The longer environmental groups hold this nuclear waste in limbo, the more likely there will be a disaster.

The Answer is Not Blowing in the Wind
About the only technology environmentalists promote is anything related to so-called “green energy” – devices that harvest power from the sun and wind.

We are told by these folks that the only way to save us from global warming and our dependency on Middle East oil is to erect more solar panels and wind turbines. The production of power from renewable resources may have a certain amount of sex appeal, but they greatly lack the ability to meet our energy needs.

Unless there is some miracle breakthrough, power generated by wind and sun will never amount to no more than 2 percent of energy needs. The amount of electrical power generated by these two sources is measured in millions of megawatts, but our current requirement runs in the trillions of megawatts. It would take a huge number of windmills to power something like a steel plant.

Solar power might have limited use in sunny states like Arizona, but it will never work for most other states. In the winter, some areas of the country have overcast skies. Here in Nebraska, the sky is cloudy about 60 to 70 percent of the time. The lower sun angle and the colder average temperature is another problem.

Wind power also has drawbacks. We can only produce power from a breeze that falls within a certain range–too much wind, and the turbine has to shut down. If there’s not enough wind, the blades won’t turn.

There is always the issue of noise pollution. There is a windmill farm near my hometown of Storm Lake, Iowa. Whenever I’m up in that region, I can hear the swooshing sound produced by the turbines a mile from their location. I’d slowly go mad if I had to constantly listen to that noise.

Green energy also has a high maintenance cost. Solar cells get dirty or wear out, and wind turbines breakdown from exposure to the elements.

Sin Is the Core Problem
As much as environmentalists try to save the earth, their efforts will ultimately end in total failure. The Bible predicts that during the tribulation hour, the world will come to near complete ruin. The destruction will be so wide scale, the prophet Isaiah warned, that men would become as rare as fine gold.

By only addressing the symptoms of man’s misdeeds, environmentalists are doing nothing to correct the root problem: sin. Without the transforming power of Jesus Christ, the environment will be resigned to its determined fate.

God has given fair warning about how the transgression of His law will lead to wide-scale judgment. If environmentalists wanted to do some lasting good, they would be wise to devote their energy to evangelizing lost souls.

Even nature itself is under the curse of sin. When Adam fell, the animal world fell with him. As much as we like our cuddly creatures, we should never forget their fallen state. One guy who failed to realize this fact ended up getting killed by a bear he was trying to save.

Back to Babylon
I am strongly against Christians embracing the environmental movement. It’s easy to relate to a desire to save the earth. Unfortunately, the designers of this movement have a political agenda that few true Christians would find compatible with the Bible.

The true goal of the environmental movement is to draw the world into a central body that would set the rules. This plan is part of the devil’s master scheme to recreate the type of control he had during the time of the Babylonian Empire. The only way to get back to Babylon is to push for world unity.

The environmental movement is a perfect disguise because it asks nations to surrender their sovereignty for a cause seemingly beneficial to all nations. Recently, a group of well-known evangelical leaders fell for this ploy by deciding to back an initiative to fight global warming.

The main job of a Christian leader is to guide lost souls to redemption. I can only ask where the Bible even hints that saving the whales and fighting global warming are part of the Great Commission. Dealing with environmental problems needs to be left to the politicians. In my view, any preacher who decides to get involved in environmental issues is like a heart surgeon who suddenly leaves an operation to fix a clogged toilet.

A New Earth
In 2 Peter, we are told that someday the earth will undergo a fiery renovation. All of nature and everything man has created will be completely destroyed.

“..The heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness” (2 Pet. 3:10-11).

I know that environmentalists would bristle at the idea of a refurbished earth being the ultimate solution to all ecological problems. If the world is going to be “dissolved,” there is no need for us to become too attached to it.

The only lasting issue is whether each of us will be around to see the day when the lion lies down with the lamb and every stream runs crystal clear with pure water. Knowing that the earth will eventually be put back in order, we need to be concerned with the preservation of our eternal souls.

“For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Mat. 16:26).