Sunday, November 11, 2012

OK it is full already - now what?

kw: population, religion, demographics

From time to time I read that this or that international body "expects" human population to peak at some number, such as nine or ten or eleven billions. I wonder if those respected experts have consulted with people in sub-Saharan Africa or in the Middle East, or with the strongly religious of every culture, whether Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Christian (and others): all are trying to out-breed the competition.

I can't speak for any of the world religions, but I do know Christianity, particularly the strongly Biblical variety such as Evangelicals. In the U.S. as a whole, the rate of population increase is just over 1%. Among Evangelicals it is much, much higher. A great many families in the churches I know have 3-5 children. Most of them think they have a divine mandate to have many children. Halfway through the first chapter of the Bible we find God's command to Adam: "Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground." (Genesis 1:28, NIV).

I have never heard a sermon on Revelation 11:18, "The nations were angry, / and your wrath has come. / The time has come for judging the dead,and for rewarding your servants the prophets / and your people who revere your name, / both great and small— / and for destroying those who destroy the earth." (NIV, emphasis supplied). So here is a mini-sermon: Listen up, people, are you among those who destroy the earth? If so, you are NOT among His servants the prophets, nor those who revere His name. That verse about multiplying until you fill the earth? It has been more than fulfilled. It is time to stop!

The earth is groaning under seven billions of us, even though half of them are in poverty. By far most of the burden on the earth is the top two billions. The "green revolution" is pretty much over, and nearly all fisheries are decreasing. If another two or four billions are added, nearly all of them will be miserably poor. And many of the 3-4 billion who are not poor today, will become poor. That doesn't sound like what God wanted in Genesis chapter 1!

So, Evangelicals, if you truly believe in God, stop trying to outbreed the Muslims and Catholics and everyone else. Do whatever you can to improve worldwide education! The birth rate drops, the more educated the population is. There is a young Pakistani girl, recovering from being shot by the Taliban for promoting education for girls. Support her cause! The best kind of missionary is an international teacher. Do you want to serve God? Raise up a giant outcry for better education everywhere, and prepare your kids to teach everywhere!

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