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Bible Study

1. a. Read Gen. 1:26-27 and Psalm 8:4-10. What does having dominion mean to you? How do we bear God’s image?

b. According to some theologians, man bears God’s image primarily because of the dominion God has given him over the rest of creation. This would also imply that we have been given the capacity for knowledge, wisdom, rational thought, compassion, mercy, kindness, self control and other traits required in a good ruler. Look closely again at the two verses from part a. Do you agree with this interpretation of how we bear God’s image? If having dominion is even a part of how we bear God’s image, what does this tell us about the importance of how we carry out this role?

c. Who is our example for how we should rule? What does Godly rule look like? Consider Psalm 72:1-4 and what you know about God for more insight.

2. Read Gen. 2:15, Gen. 2:19, Proverbs 12:10, Deut. 25:4, Deut. 22:4, and Exodus 23:10-12. What kinds of commands has God given us regarding creation?
(Note about Gen. 2:19: In Hebrew culture, the act of naming implies that one knows intimately the one receiving the name.)

3. Read Gen. 1:25, Gen. 9:9-10, Psalm 145:9, Matthew 10:29. Does God care about creation? What kinds of creatures does God care about?

4. Read Psalm 24:1, Psalm 50:10-11 and 1 Chr. 29:11. Who does creation belong to? Why is this significant?

5. Read Romans 1:20, Psalm 19:1-5 Can people come to know there is a God through His creation? Why or why not?

6. Read Psalm 150:6, Psalm 148:5, Psalm 104:24. What do these verses say about creation inspiring worship of the creator?

7. Psalm 145:15-16, Matthew 6:26, Psalm 104:14-18. What do these verses say about God’s provision? For whom does God provide?

8. We can see from the verses we have looked at so far that creation plays an important role in revealing God’s glory, singing his praises, inspiring worship, and sustaining people and animals. How well can the creation accomplish these things if people do not take care of it? Do you think the Enemy wants creation to be able to accomplish these things?

9. Read Gen 3:17, Jeremiah 12:4, Romans 8:21-22, Gen. 9:1-2. What effects does sin have on creation?

10. Do you think it is sin to destroy the earth? If so, is repentance in order? What about wastefulness, polluting, etc. done out of ignorance? Is there a place for education regarding environmental/creation stewardship among Christians? How can this be done?

11. People throughout the world are suffering and dying because of a lack of access to clean water, poor/eroded/degraded soils that do not produce food, polluted air and polluted soil that leads to disease, sanitation problems, etc. These issues affect the poor, especially in very poor countries, the most. What should we say to someone who says that Christians don’t need to care about the environment because people are more important? Do you think we can care for people without caring for creation? Look at the creation story in Genesis? How are people and creation connected?

12. Read Colossians 1:15-20. In whom does our hope and the hope of all creation lie?

13. We learned that the bible says that God provides for and cares about animals. How does this affect the way you think about animals suffering in the food industry, in test labs for cosmetics and personal care products and even homeless or abused pets? (Note – God told people that they could eat the animals. The way God told the Israelites to kill the animals is the most humane way and they lived in pastures before being killed. The majority of animals in the food industry today are not raised or killed in this humane way.)

14. Americans consume and waste far more than people from any other nation. Have you ever thought about how what and how much you consume or purchase affects God’s creation, creatures and people? Should we be held responsible for supporting things that may be displeasing to God through our consumption even if we are ignorant of the effects? Do we have a responsibility to know where our things come from; for example, what resources were used in its production, animal suffering involved, how workers or farmers were treated, how much waste and pollution was generated in production, land use practices, etc?

15. Many Christians are not interested in environmental stewardship because they associate it with political liberalism. After looking at what God’s Word says about creation, do you feel there is a place for creation stewardship in the lives of conservative Christians? How can this obstacle be overcome?

16. Do you want to be a better steward of God’s creation as an act of worship and obedience to God? What steps can you take to do this?

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