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The Greater Commission


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Dave Bookless' A Rocha Presentation from his visit to Trinity College, Bristol.

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The Greater Commission

  1. 1. The Greater Commission? <ul><li>Creation & Christian Mission </li></ul>
  2. 2. <ul><li>The Context </li></ul><ul><li>Biblical Resources </li></ul><ul><li>Implications </li></ul>The Environment & Mission
  3. 3. “ What’s the point?” “ It’s too late …” “ Climate Change will destroy us” “ Our politicians are too corrupt … our parents are too lazy … the Church is simply irrelevant” National Tour of 20 secondary schools Feb.-March 2008
  4. 5. Just in case you’re still unsure …
  5. 6. <ul><li>300,000 people a year dying by 2030. </li></ul><ul><li>200 million environmental refugees by 2050. </li></ul><ul><li>Arctic Ocean ice-free in summer, by 2015-25. </li></ul><ul><li>Up to a million species extinct by 2050. </li></ul><ul><li>“ abrupt & irreversible” Climate Change … &quot;If there's no action before 2012, that's too late. What we do in the next two to three years will determine our future. This is the defining moment.“ Rajendra Pachauri (IPCC) </li></ul>Projected Impacts of Climate Change
  6. 7. Climate Change <ul><li>the tip of the iceberg? </li></ul>the effects on the planet
  7. 8. Deforestation S. Bahia (Brazil) 1945
  8. 9. Deforestation S. Bahia (Brazil) 1990
  9. 10. Percentage of species threatened with extinction
  10. 12. If everyone lived like us, we’d need 3+ planets world’s richest 20% consume 16x poorest 20% The Biggest Issue .. Over-consumption (greed)
  11. 13. Planet Earth … are we bothered?
  12. 14. Christianity – Part of the Problem? <ul><li>Puts humans on a pedestal? </li></ul><ul><li>Proclaims spiritual vs. material? </li></ul><ul><li>Teaches cosmic destruction? </li></ul><ul><li>Has a poor track record </li></ul>
  13. 15. <ul><li>Environment </li></ul><ul><li>Business </li></ul><ul><li>Politics </li></ul><ul><li>Arts & Culture </li></ul><ul><li>Other Faiths </li></ul>The Dualist Gospel Other Christians / Church Jesus and Me (bible & prayer) Heaven
  14. 16. “ This dichotomisation blocks us from seeing who Jesus really is. It is deeply embedded in the western church & western education.” Bishop Zac Niringiye
  15. 17. <ul><li>Jesus is Lord </li></ul><ul><li>in Nairobi! </li></ul><ul><li>70%+ Christian </li></ul><ul><li>Many churches </li></ul><ul><li>Poverty (Kibera) </li></ul><ul><li>Crime </li></ul><ul><li>Corruption </li></ul><ul><li>Eco-disaster </li></ul>
  16. 18. 1. Creation 2. Fall 3. Israel 4. Jesus 5. The present and future age The Bible as a 5 Act Drama
  17. 19. <ul><li>Creation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The earth is God’s, not ours! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Psalm 24.1; 50; Leviticus 25:23 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>God cares for creation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Psalm 104; Genesis 7-9; Job 38-42 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Humanity is part of creation, related </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>to everything else </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Genesis 2.7; Psalm 8 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Humanity is called apart - to image </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>God in caring for creation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Genesis 1.26-28; 2.15; Psalm 8 </li></ul></ul>
  18. 20. The land ‘suffers’ (Jer. 12.4), ‘mourns’ (Hosea 4.1-3), ‘vomits’ (Lev. 18.25-28) & ‘groans’ (Romans 8.19-22) “ The time has come for destroying those who destroy the earth.” Revelation 11.18 <ul><ul><li>The breakdown of relationships, between God, humanity and creation </li></ul></ul>“ Cursed is the ground because of you” Genesis 3.17 <ul><ul><li>The environmental results of sin </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>God’s judgement on ecological sin </li></ul></ul>2. A Fallen World
  19. 21. <ul><ul><li>The breakdown of relationships, between God, humanity & creation </li></ul></ul>2. Fall God planet people X X X
  20. 22. <ul><ul><li>Modelling God’s purposes in the </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>land of promise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Leviticus 25; Deut. 22.6; 1 Kings 21 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Belonging where God plants us </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jeremiah 29.4-7 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Worshipping God in caring for the land </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Festivals, Sabbath, Jubilee </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Land as a spiritual barometer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>2 Chronicles 7.14 </li></ul></ul></ul>3. Israel
  21. 23. “ all things” reconciled to God through the cross” Colossians 1.19-20 “ all things in heaven and earth under one head, even Christ” Eph. 1.9-10 <ul><ul><li>Birth </li></ul></ul>“ He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters” Luke 8.22-25 <ul><ul><li>Death </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Future glory </li></ul></ul>4. Jesus – Saviour of the World “ Peace on earth” Luke 2.14 <ul><ul><li>Life </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Resurrection </li></ul></ul>The first-fruits of a new creation
  22. 24. <ul><ul><li>Following the biblical map </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>God’s covenant & promises </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>On earth as in heaven </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Signs of the Kingdom – humanity’s re-calling (Romans 8) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Destroyed or purified? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Romans 8.19-22; 2 Peter 3 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New or renewed? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Isaiah 65:17-25: Hosea 2.19 </li></ul></ul>5. The Present & Future Age
  23. 25. “ God will redeem the whole universe; Jesus’ resurrection is the beginning of that new life, the fresh grass growing through the concrete of corruption and decay in the old world. That final redemption will be the moment when heaven and earth are joined together at last, in a burst of God’s creative energy for which Easter is the prototype and source.” Bishop Tom Wright, “Surprised by Hope” p.134
  24. 26. Christianity – Part of the Problem? <ul><li>Puts humans on a pedestal? </li></ul><ul><li>Genesis 1.28 ff – we image God in creation care </li></ul><ul><li>Proclaims spiritual vs. material? </li></ul><ul><li>William Temple – “the most material religion” </li></ul><ul><li>Teaches cosmic destruction? </li></ul><ul><li>No! God’s home is with mankind </li></ul><ul><li>Has a poor track record </li></ul><ul><li>Yes! Let’s put this right! </li></ul>
  25. 27. The Top Five 5. Local energy generation 4. Beyond Kyoto … 3. Solar power 2. Faith groups getting active 1. Energy efficiency
  26. 29. <ul><li>Dare to rethink … </li></ul><ul><li>Discipleship </li></ul><ul><li>Worship </li></ul><ul><li>Lifestyle </li></ul><ul><li>Mission </li></ul><ul><li>… as if Creation Matters </li></ul>
  27. 30. Lifestyle … as if creation matters <ul><li>based on Psalm 24.1 </li></ul><ul><li>start where you’re at </li></ul><ul><li>take one step at a time </li></ul><ul><li>flexible & web-based </li></ul>
  28. 31. Surprising fruit …
  29. 32. Mission … as if creation matters “ Go into all the world and preach the Good News to all creation” Mark 16.15
  30. 33. The Five Marks of Mission <ul><li>To proclaim the Good News of the Kingdom </li></ul><ul><li>To teach, baptise and nurture new believers </li></ul><ul><li>To respond to human need by loving service </li></ul><ul><li>To seek to transform unjust structures of society </li></ul><ul><li>To strive to safeguard the integrity of </li></ul><ul><li>creation and sustain and renew the earth </li></ul>Mission as if creation matters …
  31. 34. Caring for God’s World Together
  32. 35. For 25 years, A Rocha has studied and cared for God's world. A Rocha is now working in 18 diverse countries around the world
  33. 36. The growing A Rocha family! <ul><li>Brazil </li></ul><ul><li>Bulgaria </li></ul><ul><li>Canada </li></ul><ul><li>Czech Republic </li></ul><ul><li>Finland </li></ul><ul><li>France </li></ul><ul><li>Ghana </li></ul><ul><li>India </li></ul><ul><li>Kenya </li></ul><ul><li>Lebanon </li></ul><ul><li>Netherlands </li></ul><ul><li>Peru </li></ul><ul><li>Portugal </li></ul><ul><li>South Africa </li></ul><ul><li>UK </li></ul><ul><li>USA </li></ul><ul><li>… New Zealand, Switzerland, Uganda … </li></ul>
  34. 37. Kenya Arabuko Sokoke Forest Mida Creek Watamu Marine Reserve Sokoke Scops Owl Golden-rumped Elephant Shrew
  35. 38. Lebanon Ammiq Marsh Bekaa Valley
  36. 39. A Rocha India, based in Bangalore India
  37. 40. A Rocha UK working with a local Council to transform a derelict site into a Country Park & Nature Reserve Minet Country Park A Rocha Living Waterways
  38. 41. <ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Minet before … </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>A Rocha Living Waterways
  39. 42. Minet during … A Rocha Living Waterways
  40. 43. <ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Minet after … </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>A Rocha Living Waterways
  41. 44. A Rocha UK Lewknor Steyning Dronfield Lee Abbey Southall & Hayes