Did Original Sin Destroy The Environment?

According to the recent environmentalist book Pollution and the Death of Man, by theologian Francis Schaeffer, Adam's original sin was the first step in destroying the earths environment. An excerpt from a recent book review on an evangelical website says,

"This world is not the same as when God created it and said it was good. The sin of Adam changed the way nature functioned-the curse, the damage, the new ways of death in the world, radically changed the lives and behaviors of men and animals. Man’s sin introduced entropy, extinction of species, genetic degradation over time, and unnatural death to all living things-thousands of years before anyone ever littered any beach, paved over any land, or cut down any rainforest."

The site doesn't go into the reasoning behind this statement, nor does it explore the implications. I highly doubt that the book explores the scientific and environmental implications of such a view. It is most likely concerned with maintaining a biblical perspective. I wonder where the current "creation care" movement in evangelism will go. It is a plus that they are accepting the reality of environmental destruction, yet they still compromise understanding the science in favor of supporting a narrow view of scripture. Only time will tell if these theological contortions of science will result in positive action by Christians to protect the planet.

Views: 3

Tags: christianity, climate, environment, evengelical, sin

Comment by David Capito on May 19, 2009 at 4:02pm
This reminds me of the display at the Creationist Museum that says that there were no carnivores before the original sin.

Something tells me that this original sin argument is going to raise in popularity.
Comment by Rick Watts on May 19, 2009 at 4:02pm
Interesting. That darn Adam must be responsible for asteroids striking the planet, earthquakes, forest fires, tsunamis and all other natural disasters as well. Maybe that's an example of chaos theory; about how simple actions can blow up into unpredictable consequences.
If you've ever seen animals steal from each other, fight over food and females, etc., its easy to see that 'sin' is part of our evolved heritage; I guess our human brain has been wired to commit all kinds of sin; and the ultimate goal of progressive humankind should be to unwire our brains somehow .. by aspiring to be 'good people'.
Comment by CJoe on May 19, 2009 at 4:19pm
Unfortunately, they've always held the belief that the world is ruined because of the sin of Adam. Before Global Warming became a real issue, they used his sin to explain things like thorns and crops that wouldn't yield growth. They're so hung up on the idea that we're the center of creation that they don't stop to think that thorns aren't meant to scrape them for being sinful; they're meant to protect the plant from predators. They don't seem to get that death and decay is natural and good; without decaying corpses, the earth wouldn't be fertilized. It's an uncomfy thought, but true.

So, they're acknowledgment is more of a shrug "Oh well. Adam screwed up... nothing we can do except usher in the Second Coming by actually assisting the world in self-destructing!" They're a bit fatalistic, to put it mildly.
Comment by CJoe on May 19, 2009 at 4:21pm
...just as an FYI, the "Original Sin" argument isn't new. It's just been repackaged.

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