The arguments about climate change continue. Those who point to the changes on our planet use science to support their arguments. Retreating glaciers and ice sheets. Thawing tundra. The worldwide atmospheric temperature is rising.local climates are changing, and severe weather events are increasing. It makes sense, doesn’t it that if the temperature rises there is more energy for hurricanes and tornadoes. The wind will blow as well, although you might not notice much difference in Wyoming.
The deniers usually have one of two reasons. First, it is money. If a business or individual has to spend money to reduce their carbon footprint, they tend to object. The other reason, which I am going to explore, is religious. These days in our country, the religious arguments come out of biblical prophesy.
Biblical prophesy: abandon all hope if you venture to study prophesy. Prophets abound in all human cultures. As humans, we don’t know what the future will bring and we would really like to know. The stars, tea leaves, the oracles at Delphi, Jeremiah, Nostradamus, and a host of others. The unknown is a source of fear, and people want their fears assuaged. Myself, I prefer fortune cookies. At least I get something sweet for my effort.
Most religions rely on fear to some to gain adherents. The right corn dance will bring rain and a good harvest. No dance, no rain. Money sent to an evangelist will get the right kind of prayers said for you. No confession, it’s hell for you.
Let’s go into Christian prophesy. Much of the Old Testament is about God railing against his people do do right by him. In some places God’s own words are recorded. In most instances it is a prophet. The prophets were doing God’s work : “Straighten up or else.”. Most people don’t straighten up. They don’t get the word, they don’t give a damn, or they aren’t going to listen to some raving madman. And then, bad things happen. The prophets say “See? This is all your fault. Straighten up or it will get worse.”
Well, it gets bad all the time. It also gets good some of the time. All that bad weather and fire we get in the prophesies? Plagues, pestilence? Happens all the time. Last summer at our house it was Japanese Beetles eating our roses and grapevine leaves. That was a pestilence. No grapes, no wine, if it happened in ancient times. Ever since the New Testament canon was settled on with its prophesies, especially the book of Revelation, the prophets have been crying doom regarding the Second Coming.
About that book of
Revelation, take some time and read the thing. Powerful imagery, wild predictions, fiery rhetoric. What is it about? Rome. The Beast is Rome and its Legions conquering and ruling by the sword and crucifixion. Prophesy is aimed at a specific target, in this case the Roman Empire.
It seems to me to be quite a stretch to fast forward a couple of centuries to today. Prophets of doom said before the first millennium those were the last days, and the year 1000 would bring Armageddon and the second coming. Lots of nineteenth century and twentieth century prophets sat down with their pencils and predicted the end of the world was at hand. Didn’t happen, folks.
Now many of the believers in the last days and impending doom are in positions of influence. Our Vice President is an example. Much of the so-called conservative rhetoric and congressional action is designed by prophesy believers to hasten Armageddon. I encourage you to look around the internet for the multitude of websites saying the same thing. We’re in the last days, Jesus is coming, the righteous will be raptured to heaven and the rest of us are in big trouble. Don’t you believe it. There is another scripture in Thessalonians saying nobody knows the date, He will come as a thief in the night. That one seems to be ignored these days.
My take on it, live the life that is best for you. Find the answers for yourself. If someone says he knows the answers, the odds are he does not. If you don’t find the answers yourself, you are in good company. No one knows for sure.