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Environmental crisis is a cliché whose connotations of divine judgment we no longer notice. But the term is apt for what is happening to the earth today. Habitats are disappearing and species going extinct at unprecedented rates. Artificial chemicals in ecosystems worldwide are lowering sperm counts and upsetting the gender balance of newborn vertebrates, including humans. The situation is grave even if we table the contested issue of global warming. Pioneering evolutionary biologist E. O. Wilson even set aside his longstanding differences with fundamentalists over human origins to pen The Creation, a plea for conservative Christians to embrace their responsibilities as stewards of God's earth. Ironically, Wilson is preaching to the choir: a recent study by the Barna Group found that nine in ten American evangelicals would like Christians to care more actively for creation. We are turning green.

With the release of The Green Bible (Harper One, 2008), the Scriptures are turning green too—literally. This "green-letter edition," says its publisher, "is the definitive Bible for the growing creation care movement." Its green ink highlights more than 1,000 passages chosen by The Green Bible's editorial team to demonstrate God's involvement in creation, the interdependence of its elements, its response to God, and how we are called to care for it.

The Green Bible's packaging almost parodies itself: soy-based inks, recycled paper, and a stylish, earthy cotton/linen cover made through a process in which "all air is purified before exhausting into the atmosphere and all water is purified and recycled." Surely this was a marketing necessity; the publisher could not afford the charges of hypocrisy that would follow if it ...

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February 2009

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