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Thread: What if climate change is real and human caused--what should Christians do about it?

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    What if climate change is real and human caused--what should Christians do about it?

    If the bible gives wisdom for all occasions, then it should be able to handle this:

    Let's say, for argument's sake, that Global Climate change is a fact, and that it is caused by humans.

    What then should we as Christians do about it? I'll suggest up front that while some of the secular proposals are feasible, and some not so much, there are consequences that also demand biblical consideration.

    Here's a for-instance:
    Let's say that one of the problems causing warming is cooking/warming fires (this can be applied to more or less modern cooking and heating devices), and the carbon dioxide and pollution both create conditions that contribute in some way to the warming, but they are necessary for people to survive, supposedly. Thus, if we outlaw or severely limit such fires, we run the risk of starving some people, or exposing them to cold, or causing them to to have to drink unsanitary water, or whatever. On the other hand, if we do nothing, some people are likely to lose their homes or their lives because of the effects of global warming/climate change. Thus we face the problem of not loving our neighbor in either case.

    Consider the following from a biblical standpoint (and there are likely other things that will need to be added to this list as we go forward):
    • God gave man dominion over His creation.
    • God made man in His image (unlike any other animal or plant).
    • Loving God entails love for His creation.
    • Loving God entails love especially for those made in His image.
    • Science is important and necessary, but isn't always right, as man is fallible.
    • Biblical interpretation is important and necessary, but it also isn't always right, as man is fallible.


    What should we be doing????


    Spoiler
    In case someone wants to know, even though it probably doesn't matter for this hypothetical approach, I think there is definitely a warming trend, but I don't know whether it is human-caused or not, and I don't know if it's a bad thing or not. Participants of the thread should feel free to explore the different sides.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derf View Post
    If the bible gives wisdom for all occasions, then it should be able to handle this:

    Let's say, for argument's sake, that Global Climate change is a fact, and that it is caused by humans.

    What then should we as Christians do about it? I'll suggest up front that while some of the secular proposals are feasible, and some not so much, there are consequences that also demand biblical consideration.

    Here's a for-instance:
    Let's say that one of the problems causing warming is cooking/warming fires (this can be applied to more or less modern cooking and heating devices), and the carbon dioxide and pollution both create conditions that contribute in some way to the warming, but they are necessary for people to survive, supposedly. Thus, if we outlaw or severely limit such fires, we run the risk of starving some people, or exposing them to cold, or causing them to to have to drink unsanitary water, or whatever. On the other hand, if we do nothing, some people are likely to lose their homes or their lives because of the effects of global warming/climate change. Thus we face the problem of not loving our neighbor in either case.

    Consider the following from a biblical standpoint (and there are likely other things that will need to be added to this list as we go forward):
    • God gave man dominion over His creation.
    • God made man in His image (unlike any other animal or plant).
    • Loving God entails love for His creation.
    • Loving God entails love especially for those made in His image.
    • Science is important and necessary, but isn't always right, as man is fallible.
    • Biblical interpretation is important and necessary, but it also isn't always right, as man is fallible.


    What should we be doing????


    Spoiler
    In case someone wants to know, even though it probably doesn't matter for this hypothetical approach, I think there is definitely a warming trend, but I don't know whether it is human-caused or not, and I don't know if it's a bad thing or not. Participants of the thread should feel free to explore the different sides.
    Burn more tires.

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    Persoanlly, I seriously doubt mankind can breech the boundaries GOD has ordained.
    It is GOD that controls the course and boundaries of the cosmos and creates the paths of the elements that cause the seasons.
    To put it bluntly, I do not believe mankind has the capacity to change the course of the seasons that GOD Himself established the boundaries of.
    Of all the catastrophes that the Earth has suffered, it has repaired itself in remarkable time.
    But that's just my opinion.

    "The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name." Exodus 15:3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripe View Post
    Burn more tires.



    "The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name." Exodus 15:3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tambora View Post
    Persoanlly, I seriously doubt mankind can breech the boundaries GOD has ordained.
    It is GOD that controls the course and boundaries of the cosmos and creates the paths of the elements that cause the seasons.
    To put it bluntly, I do not believe mankind has the capacity to change the course of the seasons that GOD Himself established the boundaries of.
    Of all the catastrophes that the Earth has suffered, it has repaired itself in remarkable time.
    But that's just my opinion.
    I think the point is more that mankind can certainly poison the environment to the point where the Earth could no longer support human life. If man went extinct the Earth would heal itself eventually of course. Our modern living standard that we see in Western Europe, America, Japan, and Korea is simply not sustainable on a global scale. According to a recent documentary I saw recently if we wanted to given every person in the world the same material living standard as America we would need the natural resources of five Earths. China and India are pushing ahead to modernize their societies. China and India alone have abut 1/3 of the World's population. Where are they going to get the iron, oil, wood, sand (for concrete), food, and water for their ever increasing populations? That's the price we pay to live in a modern technological society. Producing plastics, steel, oil, wood products, beef, and poultry is incredibly polluting to the environment. A lot of the energy we use comes from coal burning power plants as well which creates more pollution.
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    This stuff about the Earth "healing itself" is silly. The destruction of organisms is not reversable and the planet is just a big rock.

    Sent from my SM-A520F using TOL mobile app
    Where is the evidence for a global flood?
    E≈mc2
    When the world is a monster
    Bad to swallow you whole
    Kick the clay that holds the teeth in
    Throw your trolls out the door

    "The waters under the 'expanse' were under the crust."
    -Bob B.

    Blablaman

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Berean View Post
    I think the point is more that mankind can certainly poison the environment to the point where the Earth could no longer support human life. If man went extinct the Earth would heal itself eventually of course. Our modern living standard that we see in Western Europe, America, Japan, and Korea is simply not sustainable on a global scale. According to a recent documentary I saw recently if we wanted to given every person in the world the same material living standard as America we would need the natural resources of five Earths. China and India are pushing ahead to modernize their societies. China and India alone have abut 1/3 of the World's population. Where are they going to get the iron, oil, wood, sand (for concrete), food, and water for their ever increasing populations? That's the price we pay to live in a modern technological society. Producing plastics, steel, oil, wood products, beef, and poultry is incredibly polluting to the environment. A lot of the energy we use comes from coal burning power plants as well which creates more pollution.
    What are you suggesting? That we get rid of people, or that we change America's standard of living? If the latter (since the former is not within the authority God gave us), what do you propose and how do you propose to do it?

    Or, is it possible to provide the same standard of living with better, more natural materials? Not that I think it is our responsibility to provide a standard of living to anyone. We should, if we have such responsibility at all, make sure that the people have the ability to provide such standard of living for themselves. (This is not a commentary on whether we help the poor, but a commentary on whether we should be equalizing all living conditions.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripe View Post
    This stuff about the Earth "healing itself" is silly. The destruction of organisms is not reversable and the planet is just a big rock.

    Sent from my SM-A520F using TOL mobile app
    I think the Lord set up the earth as a system, which recycles waste in its different environments (earth, air and sea). Indeed, we recognize this immediately in the way plants use carbon dioxide to produce oxygen, and we use oxygen to produce carbon dioxide.

    Systems like that (and what I described is nowhere near a complete description of even that one miniscule part of the system) can get overloaded, but a good engineer would be expected to account for a lot of different inputs, including lesser and greater populations of people, plants and animals (like at creation vs. before the flood, and after the flood vs. today).

    So while "destruction of organisms" may not be reversible in exactly the same way, the adaptability of organisms may be a counter to such destruction.

    And while the planet is partially "a big rock", it is much more than that, as rocks erode and run into the sea, settle to the bottom as something else; and new rocks form from volcanic and tectonic activity, perhaps illustrating ways to handle garbage better than we currently do. Down within that "big rock" are bacteria and other organisms that do things we don't understand, some, perhaps, creating useful materials (like oil) and some, perhaps, digesting those materials when they become a burden.

    If God gave instruction to fill the earth with people (and He did), then I suspect that he made the earth to handle the number of people that it would take to fill it. And perhaps He even gave us proper instructions as to how to take care of the earth He made and gave us dominion over. Or maybe He wants us to figure it out with the faculties He gave us. That's why I don't believe we can or should toss out the findings of science in this area. But I also don't think science is always right or should be accumulated without input from God's revelation to us.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derf View Post
    I think the Lord set up the earth as a system, which recycles waste in its different environments (earth, air and sea). Indeed, we recognize this immediately in the way plants use carbon dioxide to produce oxygen, and we use oxygen to produce carbon dioxide.

    Systems like that (and what I described is nowhere near a complete description of even that one miniscule part of the system) can get overloaded, but a good engineer would be expected to account for a lot of different inputs, including lesser and greater populations of people, plants and animals (like at creation vs. before the flood, and after the flood vs. today).

    So while "destruction of organisms" may not be reversible in exactly the same way, the adaptability of organisms may be a counter to such destruction.

    And while the planet is partially "a big rock", it is much more than that, as rocks erode and run into the sea, settle to the bottom as something else; and new rocks form from volcanic and tectonic activity, perhaps illustrating ways to handle garbage better than we currently do. Down within that "big rock" are bacteria and other organisms that do things we don't understand, some, perhaps, creating useful materials (like oil) and some, perhaps, digesting those materials when they become a burden.

    If God gave instruction to fill the earth with people (and He did), then I suspect that he made the earth to handle the number of people that it would take to fill it. And perhaps He even gave us proper instructions as to how to take care of the earth He made and gave us dominion over. Or maybe He wants us to figure it out with the faculties He gave us. That's why I don't believe we can or should toss out the findings of science in this area. But I also don't think science is always right or should be accumulated without input from God's revelation to us.
    That all sounds nice and all, but there's still nothing that can be done to see recovery.

    It's called entropy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripe View Post
    That all sounds nice and all, but there's still nothing that can be done to see recovery.

    It's called entropy.

    Sent from my SM-A520F using TOL mobile app
    Do you ever clean your room? Or do you just move to a new one every year or so, and a new home every several years, when the clothes and trash get too deep?

    That's entropy, too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derf View Post
    Do you ever clean your room? Or do you just move to a new one every year or so, and a new home every several years, when the clothes and trash get too deep? That's entropy, too.
    Sure. And as nations we do what we can to keep things in order.

    The problem I have is with platitudes like a "living Earth," or the notion that things would be better if people diminished.
    Where is the evidence for a global flood?
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    Kick the clay that holds the teeth in
    Throw your trolls out the door

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    Quote Originally Posted by Derf View Post
    Do you ever clean your room? Or do you just move to a new one every year or so, and a new home every several years, when the clothes and trash get too deep?

    That's entropy, too.
    Stripe has a basic misunderstanding of entropy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tambora View Post
    Persoanlly, I seriously doubt mankind can breech the boundaries GOD has ordained.
    It is GOD that controls the course and boundaries of the cosmos and creates the paths of the elements that cause the seasons.
    To put it bluntly, I do not believe mankind has the capacity to change the course of the seasons that GOD Himself established the boundaries of.
    Of all the catastrophes that the Earth has suffered, it has repaired itself in remarkable time.
    But that's just my opinion.
    What exactly do you mean by changing the course of the seasons in the context of climate change? Are you saying you don't think that God would allow man's actions to increase the global temps to affect the climate?

    And you say that's your opinion, and it's a religious argument. What do you think of the science?
    I've seen arguments that most opposition to the idea of man-made climate change is not rooted in the science, it's about other things (religion, economics, politics), and your post looks like a confirmation of that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripe View Post
    Sure. And as nations we do what we can to keep things in order.

    The problem I have is with platitudes like a "living Earth," or the notion that things would be better if people diminished.
    Did I use such platitudes? Or suggest the diminishing of people?

    I don't think the earth is an organism. But I do think it is a system, just like our planetary system is a system and our galaxy is a system.

    As a system, the parts work together to accomplish the goal of the designer of the system, unless something gets in the way.

    Greed is one thing that might get in the way. In other words, if someone's desire for monetary gain or power cause them to disregard the future state of the part of the system they are affecting, say in mining gold or building amusement parks or whatever, they might adversely affect the system in such a way that it might have a hard time recovering. I guess one of the more severe effects we have witnessed is from nuclear power plants.

    So, while nuclear power plants are great for diminishing one type of impact caused by humans, they unleash another type, potentially.

    Almost everything we can discuss related to this topic is going to involve some kind of tradeoffs, I think.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kmoney View Post
    I've seen arguments that most opposition to the idea of man-made climate change is not rooted in the science, it's about other things (religion, economics, politics), and your post looks like a confirmation of that.
    http://www.dailywire.com/news/9767/9...aaron-bandler#

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