Saving souls or saving animals
Thu, 20 Jun 1996 09:34:30 EST

Dick Fischers says:

By all means discuss the issue, but there are some of us whose priorities
might hinge on whether we think it is more important to save souls or
animals and plants.

My response:

Dick's comment is very typical of the response to environmental degradation
expressed by most conservative evangelicals. It is a false dichotomy. I
answer that objection to environmental responsibility this way: "What is most
important, saving souls or being a good parent?" The obvious answer is that
witnessing and parenting are both responsibilities that cannot be prioritized
away (besides, God saves the souls; we only share the truth). Stewardship is
a responsibility we were given at the very beginning and have come to ignore.
That is sin -- just as it is sin for pastors and evangelists to ignore their
families in the pursuit of "saving souls."

It seems that Dick is too burdened with the responsibility first to save the
Bible and then to save souls. I don't think God ever intended either to by
(be) "our" responsibilities. We do have a responsibility to be good parents andto be good stewards and to be good witnesses; the rest is in God's very
capable hands. Faith is the final surrender of a rebel will, and if the
veracity of the Bible were once and for all made crystal clear to all skeptics,
there is no question in my mind that those who claim they "cannot" come to
faith because of the origins problem would, for the most part, still reject
Him. It is a problem of the will, not the intellect, that keeps most from
the Faith.

Dean Ohlman
Cornerstone College