December 8, 2015

Adventist Church Reaffirms Commitment to Environment

The Seventh-day Adventist Church said it backs and applauds efforts of world leaders to come to an agreement to stem the deterioration of the Earth at an ongoing major climate-change conference in Paris.

“The Seventh-day Adventist Church has long supported responsible stewardship of all God has created and reinforces its belief that we all need to be responsible for the resources He has given us,” the church said in a statement.

World leaders hope to reach a new global climate pact during the 21st United Nations Climate Change Conference, held in Paris from Nov. 30 to Dec. 11. Negotiations have taken place on the draft text of the agreement for the past four years, and ministers will attempt to finalize the wording to the liking of all 195 countries at the conference this week.

The Adventist Church issued an official statement on the environment in 1995. It reads as follows:

“Seventh-day Adventists believe that humankind was created in the image of God, thus representing God as His stewards, to rule the natural environment in a faithful and fruitful way.

“Unfortunately, corruption and exploitation have been brought into the management of the human domain of responsibility. Increasingly men and women have been involved in a megalomaniacal destruction of the earth's resources, resulting in widespread suffering, environmental disarray, and the threat of climate change. While scientific research needs to continue, it is clear from the accumulated evidence that the increasing emission of destructive gasses, the depletion of the protective mantel of ozone, the massive destruction of the American forests, and the so-called greenhouse effect, are all threatening the earth's eco-system.

“These problems are largely due to human selfishness and the egocentric pursuit of getting more and more through ever-increasing production, unlimited consumption and depletion of nonrenewable resources. The ecological crisis is rooted in humankind's greed and refusal to practice good and faithful stewardship within the divine boundaries of creation.

“Seventh-day Adventists advocate a simple, wholesome lifestyle, where people do not step on the treadmill of unbridled consumerism, goods-getting, and production of waste. We call for respect of creation, restraint in the use of the world's resources, reevaluation of one's needs, and reaffirmation of the dignity of created life.”

“We support the efforts of world leaders and all humankind to protect and respect that which has been created by God and entrusted to us.”