By CLIVE BUTCHER
Thursday 10 September 2020
7 So God created humankind[e] in his image, in the image of God he created them;[f] male and female he created them. 28 God blessed them, and God said to them, "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 air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth." 29 God said, "See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. 30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food." And it was so. 31 God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.
( GRAPH FROM WWF LIVING PLANET REPORT 2020)
The World Wildlife Fund's Living Planet Report 2020 makes depressing reading. Every two years WWF issues a report describing how far species populations have decreased since 1970 .This year the report states that ' The population sizes of mammals , birds fish , amphibians and reptiles have seen an alarming average drop of 68% since 1970'. The decrease in the numbers and variety of both plants and animals reflects the damage we are inflicting on our planet. Human activity has resulted in 75 % of the ice-free land surface being significantly altered , pollution of oceans and 85% loss of wetland areas. The loss of species affects other systems resulting in food shortages, disease and climate change.
The Genesis account reminds us that we were created in God's image and that God saw his Creation as good. God gave us ' dominion' meaning sovereignty or control but he wanted us to use that power justly. Instead we are destroying the natural world , even now large areas of the Amazon rain forest are burning. Understanding our responsibility to care for the World God entrusted to our keeping is essential if we are to halt the ever increasing destruction of ecosystems.
May we remember that we were created in your image and that it is the responsibility of everyone of us to care in large or small ways for your good Earth. Amen