“Tearing a Page out of the Bible”

James Merritt, a twenty-five-year-old theology student, used this phrase to an AP reporter to explain how a professor inspired him to support a movement among his fellow Southern Baptists to help preserve the traditional climate.

His professor had compared destroying God’s creation to "tearing a page out of the Bible."

"That
struck me. It broke me," the younger Merritt said in an interview, "and
that was the impetus that began a life change, a shift of perspective
for me."

Of course a handful of skeptics remain, including James Dobson of Colorado Springs, and Charles Colson of the Nixon administration, Stephen Milloy, an Exxonian, and Rush Limbaugh, an anti-liberal. Colson and Dobson claim that this environmental problem is "great exaggerated."

But Merritt’s proposal convinced the president of the largest group of Protestants in the US, with 16.3 million Southern Baptists, to stop the foot-dragging. Just last year the Southern Baptists doubted the science of climate change, and in a 2007 declaration suggested that measures to reduce the damage could "hurt the poor."

In the 2008 statement, the Southern Baptists said:

"We believe our current denominational resolutions and engagement with
these issues have often been too timid. Our cautious response to these issues in the face of mounting evidence
may be seen by the world as uncaring, reckless and ill-informed. We can
do better.
"

Frankly, I’m surprised at this change of heart — and delighted. Will try to talk to Merritt, find out more.

(h/t: Dan Bloom)

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