Is care for the world a part of the mission of God and, therefore, of our mission in this world? Chris Wright’s The Mission of God is one of the very few — and you might be able to count them on one hand — books on mission that involves God’s concern with the earth as part of the mission of God in this world.
Again, would you consider creation care as inherent to the gospel work of God? Why or why not?
This chp (12) has two major sections: one defending the theme of the earth as part of God’s mission and the second on the missional-earthly mandate for Christians.
Creation is good and has intrinsic value. Creation has a sanctity (not divinity). The whole earth is the field of God’s mission and ours as well. God’s glory is the goal of all creation, not just humans. (The closing scenes of The Narnia books comes to mind.)
And Wright also draws our attention to Isaiah 65-66 and I must quote some of it:
65:17 ?Behold, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. 18 But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create, for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight and its people a joy. 19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more. 20 ?Never again will there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years; he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere youth; he who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed. 21 They will build houses and dwell in them; they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. 22 No longer will they build houses and others live in them, or plant and others eat. For as the days of a tree, so will be the days of my people; my chosen ones will long enjoy the works of their hands. 23 They will not toil in vain or bear children doomed to misfortune; for they will be a people blessed by the Lord, they and their descendants with them. 24 Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear. 25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox, but dust will be the serpent’s food. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain,? says the Lord.
And of course Romans 8:18-21; 2 Peter 3; Rev 21.
Now six themes for praxis:
1. Creation care is an urgent issue.
2. Creation care flows from loving God and obedience to God.
3. Creation care exercises our priestly and kingly role.
4. Creation care tests our motivation for mission.
5. Creation care is a prophetic opportunity.
6. Creation care embodies a balance of compassion and justice.