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Why I Bought the Green Bible

While critics who see these words in green might be disturbed, thinking that this means we're supposed to worship mountains and the sea, I'm afraid they're totally missing the point. The green words point me to the Creator and teach me about his character. They help me realize that I have no right to destroy something that he has made and called good. In this way, creation care is not a fad or secular environmentalism; it is motivated by reverence for a Creator.

It is only from this posture that a Christian environmental ethic makes sense. Ironically, environmentalism then ceases to focus solely on the environment but rather becomes a natural response to the one who created it. Triggered by an understanding of who this is, we start to search for ways to honor him in our daily lives. We begin to see the interconnectedness between people and the rest of creation as we realize how much he values it. We realize that future generations deserve to appreciate it as much as we do. And - this is a surprisingly strong theme of this green-letter Bible - we see that caring for the earth is part of a response to God's call to serve the poor and oppressed, since pollution, deforestation, and other blows to the earth hit their fragile economies and health the hardest. The Green Bible contains several essays to explain this important point.

Despite this praise, I do have one suggestion for future editions of this Bible. In over 100 pages of supplemental readings, only a few paragraphs are devoted directly to an explanation of why certain verses were going green. Of course not everyone will agree on the merits of each green verse - as the editors were no doubt painfully aware as they prepared them - but the curious reader or Bible scholar needs more than a four-point list of criteria to feel comfortable with a green-letter edition. Many readers would appreciate an expanded analysis of why passages were selected to be printed in green.

April22, 2009 at 1:49 PM

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