In Class Own Questions
One current age is one of rapid and vast destruction of species and habitats. However, Christianity is an avenue that holds the potential of solving this problem. Indeed, Christian tradition and the bible are full of stories and images about God, and of descriptions in how He sustains our world. This, therefore, models healthy environmental ways for humanity. Chapter 3, 4, and 5 of Mark Wallace’s book, Finding God in the Singing River: Christianity, Spirit, Nature, creates an often neglected but central theme. This theme holds God as a carnal spirit indwelling all things. This theme is the basis for constructing a spiritual greenness that responds to the current environmental needs.
In the biblical tradition, Wallace writes that God is a spirit with an ecological presence that manifests itself by living through and in the earth. In this case, the first question comes to mind. Should we then consider the spirit of God as one that is embodied in the material world? By the material world, I mean earthly things such as broad winged hawks, vernal springs, and ancient redwoods. Hence, we can conclude that the spirit of God indwells and takes care of these things in order to maintain a healthy status of our earthly home. Alongside tradition and green reading of the bible, Wallace also uses deep ecology, environmental justice, and Neopagan spirituality in rethinking of God as an earth based spirit.
In addition, a quote in chapter four states that the earth spirit intercedes for us daily and implores us to show more love for our earthly home. If this statement is to be taken into consideration, should we then infer that the author distorts the biblical scriptures for personal purposes and claims that the bible has fault? This statement holds that man’s dominion over earth has led to the development of an “ecocidal disease’ that is inclined on destroying the earth. However, the bible indeed states the God gave man dominion over the earth, but the aspect of taking care of it is at question. Taking care of the world is more of a moral calling rather than a religious one. We are required to take care of this world because we live in it. On the other hand, God is primarily concerned about our spiritual well-being rather than our physical dominion on this earth.
Even though the book is based on Christian setting, it also combines the doctrines of animists, neopagans, pagans, green spiritualists and other religions. Hence, should students reading this book use it to spot propaganda, faulty logic, false teachings, and educational hogwash? This question is based on the premise that the doctrines used to explain the message of this book conflict with each other in many ways. Hence, using conflicting views in an attempt to explain a particular concept cannot arrive to a reliable conclusion. This implies that the conclusions Wallace arrived are not credible.
Conclusively, Wallace applies in chapters three, four and five ideas that present his beliefs and disguises his warping truth. The message of these chapters implies that there exists a parent God who is the creator, his son Jesus, and another spirit god. The spirit god is one that abides in nature and the earth. From biblical teachings, we can infer that Jesus gave his life on the cross to intercede between God and the entire human race. From this school of thought, we can come up with the conclusion that the spirit of God dwelling on earth plays the role of redeeming us physically through her crucifixion in the form of ecological destruction by humans.