In 2006 Al Gore starred in a documentary called “An Inconvenient Truth.” In it he made the claim that there is a strong scientific consensus that the earth is warming primarily because of human activity. His argument was that as more humans populate the earth, more carbon dioxide is created in the atmosphere, which results in higher temperatures around the world. The documentary used sensationalized images to create a sense of doom and gloom that gave people a justification for regulating human activity on the Earth. Global warming activists have used this theory to curtail human innovation, placing the environment as a higher priority than the needs of people.
There are many scientific theories surrounding global warming, and scientists around the world are far from reaching a consensus on the issue. The Answers Research Journal published a paper in 2010 that proves this point. It is titled “A Proposed Bible-Science Perspective on Global Warming” and it reveals there are many scholars who disagree with the theory on global warming (https://answersresearchjournal.org/bible-science-global-warming/).
The issues related to global warming are more complicated than is often presented in the media. Instead of reducing the issue to sensationalized images of polar bears floating on icebergs, the discerning reader needs to study the science behind many issues including glaciers, carbon dioxide, climate and temperature. The Christian reader also needs to look to Scripture to make a determination about this issue.
As a Christian, we are called to be discerning about issues that are presented to us (1 John 4:1). We are called to look to God’s word to understand how to live a godly life here on the earth (2 Tim. 3:16-17). Many Christians are unaware that there are passages in Scripture that address the theories presented by global warming. I will just focus on two main passages.
The first issue that the Bible addresses is that, contrary to global warming activism, humans take priority over the environment. In Genesis chapter 1 God creates man and woman in his image and gives them this command, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Humans are thus commanded by God to rule over the world that he created. The environment is not more important than human life. Instead, human life takes highest priority, and the rest of God’s creation comes second.
The second issue the Bible addresses is the destruction of the earth. Global warming activists predict massive flooding and a dramatic disruption of the atmosphere. However, the Bible makes it clear that God already brought a global flood that destroyed the earth with water, as described in Genesis chapters 6-7. God destroyed the earth because of the unprecedented level of wickedness that existed on the planet.
After destroying the earth, God reestablished human life through Noah and his family and made a promise to Noah that He would never again destroy the earth by water (Genesis 9:11-17). God gave the rainbow as a sign that “never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” (Gen. 9:11). God further promised in Genesis 8:21-22, “I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth. Neither will I ever again strike down every living creature as I have done. While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.”
The last sentence is especially relevant to the theory of global warming. God’s word states that Earth’s atmosphere will continue to function according to God’s design until “the arth remains.” 2 Peter 3:10 says, “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.” This means that God has already established a time when the earth will be destroyed, not by water but by fire at the time of Christ’s return, and then the earth will be remade (Revelation 21:1).
We need not fear the doomsday predictions of global warming activists because the Bible already tells us that God will determine the end of the earth, not human activity. Instead, we must listen to God’s word and ask ourselves, “Are we ready for Christ’s return?”