Christian, Climate Change is the True Pro-Life Issue.

Republican Evangelical, I want to talk to you about Life.

No, not the word you’ve weaponized as ammunition in your incessant, hollow holy culture war; the one you use to justify your political alignment with an amoral monster; not the word you wield like a legislative hammer against women’s autonomy over their own bodies.

I’m talking about Life, in its most expansive, most elemental definition.
Life, as describing the glorious entirety of all creation.
Life, as the interdependent community of every being, every creature, every atom, every bit of matter.
I’m talking about Life as the interconnected existence of all that you claim God has purposefully made.

You are neglecting this Life.

Life, is the climate that is changing rapidly and perhaps irrevocably.
Life, is the regular and accelerating extinction of disparate wildlife.
Life, is the growing toxicity of our air and water and atmosphere.
Life, is the furious deforestation of the planet.
Life, is the vanishing polar icecaps and the rising oceans and the eroding coastlines.
Life, is the dying of honeybees and butterflies and sea turtles and Amur leopards.
Life, is the irresponsible depletion of our natural resources and the infrastructure paving over habitats.

I wonder why all that Life seems of little consequence to you, given your pro-life professions; the label you so easily affix to yourself in marches and on t-shirts and in bumper stickers; in the voting booth and in the pulpit and on social media diatribes.

I’m curious as to why those sustained acts of aggression against Life don’t keep you up at night or bring you to tears and render you bold or drive you to confront strangers in parking lots.

And please don’t tell me it’s God.

I know you rely on a self-centered theology of privilege that wants to imagine that human beings are somehow elevated above, separated from, and independent of the rest of this world—but we are not. That is a convenient heresy. The truth is, we are not near nature or interacting with nature, we are nature: part of it, affected by it, participating in it.

We are inextricably tethered to the oceans sustaining us and the air surrounding us and the atmosphere above us; to the degrading soil and the vanishing diversity and the multiplying carcinogens.

There is catastrophic dying happening in your midst and on your watch and by your very hands—and for some reason, none of us this imperiled life seems to merit your urgency or incite your passion or earn your advocacy. Maybe because then you’d have to change how you live, to face your culpability, to admit your violence against what God has made and charged you with stewarding.

Then maybe you’d have to admit you’re not really all that pro-life after all.

If you can limit “Life,” to the contents of another woman’s uterus, then you don’t have to deal with the mirror. Then you can stay upon your moral high horse castigating the bleeding hearts and the tree huggers while you can over indulge and waste and upsize; you can buy and spend and use, and commit a thousand daily assaults against the planet and still imagine you’re defending the living.

You can continue to sin unabated and still feel righteous.

If the God you claim to believe in exists, I wonder how you’ll explain letting thousands of species disappear, coral reefs die, wildfires rage, and the very earth to warm without lifting a finger—other than to expedite it all.

I wonder how your claims of being pro-life will play to One who will have logged every turn of your head, every lazy shortcut, every bit of willful ignorance, every hypocritical sermon.

I can imagine the way you’ll justify to that God, for crusading to force children to be born into a world that is literally burning while you pour propellant.

If the atmosphere and the rivers and the insects and the stripping of the soil doesn’t matter to you, you’re not pro-life—you’re a highly selective saint claiming to honor the sanctity in the world when it serves you, and ignore it if it interferes with your spending habits or car choices or vacation home plans. 

You can’t be both predatory toward the planet and be say you’re pro-life. Your selfish, arrogant consumption of creation and your reckless disregard of all you’ve been entrusted with, is as sinful as any act you imagine yourself opposing.

You are fundamentally failing to defend Life right now.
Worse than that, you are violently assaulting it.
I hope you’re prepared to meet your Maker after all you done to destroy what has been made.

 

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13 thoughts on “Christian, Climate Change is the True Pro-Life Issue.

  1. WELL DONE, WELL DONE..
    I have just been listening to the Republican response to the NEW GREEN DEAL, and how they and a least a couple of Democrats think that is is going too far in trying to save this Planet and all of the issues that you raise here John, WHAT HYPOCRITES!!!, well we have know that they are hypocrites on lots of issues, but, I don’t believe they have ever had it explained to them in such an insightful and truthful manner. Gee, I wish you were a Senator or better still the President.
    Thank you once again for a great and insightful blog.

  2. Thank you so much, John. What you say on virtually every issue upon which I have seen you comment resonates with me. Things I could not articulate but intrinsically know. When I need guidance in understanding our God and how we fit in his perfect world that we have made imperfect, I look to your comments for clarity. I am thankful for you and for God shining his light through you, so that I can better follow him.

  3. And that’s not all!
    What about sacred human life in which millions die daily at the hand of just about every industry, medical, drunken drivers, firearm owners – the list is endless.
    Where is the cry for all those lives?

  4. I need some examples. All this rhetoric is like fake news. Nothing to back it up!! I do know Republicans do not condone the killing of babies at birth!!

  5. Here’s my reply, a few minutes ago, to someone who took issue with this sermon of Pastor John’s in particular, and Pastor John’s theology in general:

    “When we are told that God created the Human Species in His own image, we are not to imagine that God has a calcium-phosphate skeleton, or might be prone to glutton allergies.

    Rather, We as a species have Our Creator’s ability and desire to create things ourselves.

    With the perception and ability to create, comes the abilitly and neccesity to destroy….. everything we do sacrifces time, at least, and quite often other things as well, in order to make the things we were created to make….

    Sin, as I see it, is the destruction of that which not ought to be destroyed….. Hence the need for the Salvation brought by Christ.

    Salvation should grant us the perception that everything we do can potentially be “The Work Prepared Beforehand, That we should Walk in It”….. or, if we stray from God’s purpose… to impede the Good Things good intends to have us do as parts of his Creation…..

    Genesis does NOT tell us that God gave Dominion over the Fish of the Sea to the Sealions and Pelicans who eat them, or the Beavers who alter the fishes’ habitat…. Nor was Dominion over the Birds of the Air granted to Cats….. So it does not mean a liscense to fill our bellies or despoil their habitat… Rather we must underestand the Dominion that God gave man to be something else….. An Understanding… a Comprehension…..

    A Preacher I knew had a favorite sermon which I heard more than once…. God’s First Commandment delivered explicitly to Humans…… To have Dominion over the Fish…… And HOW LONG did it take us to OBEY this Commandment? Linneaus gave the first scientific name to fishes in 1758. Modern Aquariums were designed in the 1850’s. That Preacher pointed out that we sent men unto space before we reached the depths of the sea…… And Now, every year, we discover and describe new species of fishes from the reefs and abyses and lakes and rivers and streams and swamps and caverns of the world….. Finally! We obey the first commandent.

  6. Right-on!!! Truth stands on its own. Truth will never align itself with indifference. Truth will always check its conscience. And Truth will never discriminate between rich and poor, white and non-white, skilled and unskilled. Truth cannot bend, will not be broken nor reshaped. Truth is bigger than you–and me.

  7. What I occasionally hear from evangelical Christians about pollution, species loss, etc., is that “when Jesus returns, He will fix all those things.”

    Wait. What?

    Imagine you’re a teenager, and your parents have left you in charge of the house for the weekend, and you invite 500 of your closest friends over and have an absolute wreckage of a party and trash the place. In what universe can you shrug off the carnage you’ve caused, believing your parents will clean everything up when they get home?

    The first thing your parents are gonna do when they get home is ground you — possibly for life — for trashing their house. And that’s if they’re feeling charitable.

    Folks, don’t you think the first thing Jesus is going to say when He gets here is “What in My name have you done with this planet I lent you?”

    Planetary stewardship began as a concept deeply rooted in Judeo-Christian belief, and I can’t understand why it hasn’t remained so.

  8. Hi John,

    Have you written about the mindset some evangelicals have that environmental destruction, exctinctions, and pollution don’t matter because the rapture is imminent and Jesus is coming back shortly to fix everything? If you haven’t written about this, can you please?

    Thanks.

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