Mission and the Environment in a Finite World (Issue 28 March 2009)

Issue 28 – Editor: Andy Kingston-Smith fuel gauge

We hear about environmental matters on a daily basis. Lord Mandelson recently had a sticky encounter with a protester who expressed her frustration that the democratic purpose did not appear to give her a voice with which to question the Government’s handling of carbon emission reductions at its summit launch. She clearly feels passionate about it. Without wishing to advocate similar action, the question for us is posed; to what extent do we, as Christ’s Kingdom representatives, feel passionate about issues of justice and ethical living? Is it actually important? Do we care? If not, why not?

This edition of Encounters reports from the annual Environment Day Conference held at Redcliffe College in January in conjunction with the John Ray Initiative, when the central issue presented for debate was “Just living: the quest for fairness in a finite world”.

Dr Dewi Hughes writes two articles, extracted from his talk at the conference. He reminds us of God’s blueprint for justice-based living through the model laid out in the Old Testament concept of Jubilee and through Jesus’ radical Kingdom-ethics message delivered in the Beatitudes.

Peter Price-Thomas takes up the theme of God’s “hidden” blueprint revealed in nature and poses some fascinating scenarios for us to consider before I wrap up with some missional responses to these, and other, perspectives. Sometimes it just takes a bit of lateral thinking and a good dosage of Holy Spirit-inspired boldness to get us jogging along the right track again!

When attending the very recent “Hope for Planet Earth” event in Cheltenham, I was encouraged to see the wider church addressing key issues on climate change, poverty/sustainable development and ethical questions of over-consumption and the need for “light living”. Again, I will comment briefly on some of the issues raised.

May I encourage you to reflect critically on the issues raised in the articles and to carefully consider the questions and concerns posed. Finally, do respond however provoked… that is all we ask!

Andy Kingston-Smith, Assistant Lecture in Mission, Redcliffe College.
Special Editorial:  New Editorial Board and Format for Encounters.
(Dr Kang-San Tan, 270 words) PDF -:- Abstract & Discussion
True Wealth (Part One: Old Testament) – God’s blueprint for justice-based living.
(Dr Dewi Hughes, 4433 words) PDF -:- Abstract & Discussion
True Wealth (Part Two: New Testament) – Jesus’ radical Kingdom-ethics message
(Dr Dewi Hughes, 3169 words) PDF -:- Abstract & Discussion
Flourishing in a Resource Constrained World: God’s hidden blueprint for his planet.

(Peter Price-Thomas, 2108 words) PDF -:- Abstract & Discussion
God’s Indelible Imprint: Thumbs up for global change!
(Andy Kingston-Smith, 2590 words) PDF-:- Abstract & Discussion

Book Review:  ‘L’ is for Lifestyle: Christian living that doesn’t cost the earth
(by Ruth Valerio; IVP)

And finally, a single PDF of the whole issue. Ideal for using offline or to make printing easier.

Issue 28:  Single Document Version (in full)
(pdf 396 kb)

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