Many peoples and communities around the world will be celebrating Earth Day this weekend, including churches and other religious gatherings. Those who follow Jesus Christ have a unique opportunity during such an observance to point people to Scripture—to show how the Bible is imbued not only with celebrations of God’s creation, but also with creation’s celebration of its Creator.
In theological terms, you may have heard the phrase ‘general revelation’ or ‘natural revelation,’ which is, in short, knowledge gleaned about God by our observations of the natural world—his expressions of love, creation, power, beauty. Though a secular holiday, on Earth Day Christ-followers are called to remember that we’re care-takers of that which God has given us. We’re called to remember that we should treat the Earth—soil, water, and life—like the gift it is. And then, yes, to realize that it’s possible to misuse this gift and to take it for granted as we’re so apt to do even with the unparalleled treasure of God’s freely-given salvation.
So, far from being purely political, Earth Day is a reminder that the least we could do is open our eyes, learn something about God, and see how his creations point to his Word and vice-versa. Every aspect of life can draw us into the Word. Jesus speaks to us through Scripture and creation.
Here are 10 verses you might read and contemplate throughout the weekend that sing the Creator’s praises in relation to his creation.
1. John 1:3
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. — John 1:3 (KJV)
2. Isaiah 42:5
This is what God the Lord says—
the Creator of the heavens, who stretches them out,
who spreads out the earth with all that springs from it,
who gives breath to its people,
and life to those who walk on it: — Isaiah 42:5 (NIV)
3. Psalm 96:11-12
Let heaven celebrate! Let the earth rejoice!
Let the sea and everything in it roar!
Let the countryside and everything in it celebrate!
Then all the trees of the forest too
will shout out joyfully — Psalm 96:11-12 (CEB)
4. Job 12:7-10
“But ask the beasts, and they will teach you;
the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you;
or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you;
and the fish of the sea will declare to you.
Who among all these does not know
that the hand of the Lord has done this?
In his hand is the life of every living thing
and the breath of all mankind. — Job 12:7-10 (ESV)
5. Romans 1:20
For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God. — Romans 1:20 (NLT)
6. Psalm 95:4-5
In His hand are the deep places of the earth;
The heights of the hills are His also.
The sea is His, for He made it;
And His hands formed the dry land. — Psalm 95:4-5 (NKJV)
7. Hebrews 11:3
By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. —Hebrews 11:3 (NIV)
8. Isaiah 24:4-6
The earth dries up and withers,
the world languishes and withers;
the heavens languish together with the earth.
The earth lies polluted
under its inhabitants;
for they have transgressed laws,
violated the statutes,
broken the everlasting covenant.
Therefore a curse devours the earth,
and its inhabitants suffer for their guilt;
therefore the inhabitants of the earth dwindled,
and few people are left. —Isaiah 24:4-6 (NRSV)
9. Ezekiel 34:2-3
“Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel; prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Woe to you shepherds of Israel who only take care of yourselves! Should not shepherds take care of the flock? You eat the curds, clothe yourselves with the wool and slaughter the choice animals, but you do not take care of the flock. — Ezekiel 34:2-3 (NIV)
10. Psalm 104:24-25
O Lord, how manifold are your works!
In wisdom have you made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures.
Here is the sea, great and wide,
which teems with creatures innumerable,
living things both small and great. — Psalm 104:24-25 (ESV)