VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- Earth Day is now Earth Week and messages of going green, global warming and greenhouse gases fill the air from elementary schools to the halls of Congress.
However, the argument is not just about caring for the planet. But doing so with caution and not just jumping on any green bandwagon.
"We can't take care of the stars, but we can surely do our part to watch over the forests, fields, and waterways," said Dr. Calvin Beisner, an environmental expert.
Christian environmental experts like Dr. Beisner say good stewardship of all earth's natural wonders is God's clear instruction. He says the effort starts with trusting the Creator, who wisely engineered check and balances into the world:
"He designs it with positive and negative mechanisms and consequently when there's some change in a little bit of the system, the whole thing doesn't go haywire," Beisner told CBN News.
For instance, clouds produced by warmth in turn produce a net cooling effect. So Beisner says the world is less prone to theoretical disasters like global warming than many environmentalists and politicians would have us think.
Part of The Answer?
Still, there's plenty of air, water, and ground pollution. Beisner believes part of the answer could be found in solving another global problem - poverty.
"In wealthy countries, environments improve which is why we need to promote the development of the economies of the Third World, because the wealthier they get, the more they will be able to protect and clean up their own environments," he explained.
Another example is clean water. Some environmentalists focus only on how many millions do not have safe water. But a growing portion of the world enjoys drinkable water. That means there's both encouraging progress and a lot of work still to do.
Beisner recommends a group known as Churches and Villages Together. It is a partnership between U.S. churches and poor communities that encourages evangelism, small businesses, and environmental stewardship.
The net effect of Christian belief, economic prosperity, and protecting nature could make the earth a better place to live -- especially when applied with a deep biblical understanding:
"Love fulfilling god's law toward each other and giving voluntarily of what is ours to help others," Beisner said. "But then we need prudence. We need this ability to think about not just the intended consequences of our actions but also the unintended consequences."
Beisner's book entitled Where Garden Meets Wilderness, takes a look at environmental protection from a Christian perspective.