Global Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
Open Access

ISSN: 2319-8834

+44 7480022681

Abstract

Environmental Justice for Sustainable Development: A Biblical Perspective

Makamure Clemence

The growing awareness of environmental crisis has led to widespread religious reflection on the human relationship with the environment. After perceiving the goodness of the world that he had created, God created humanity in his own image. The perfectly created human being was placed in harmony with the world and was told to subdue it. Human beings were asked to rule and not to destroy the world. This implies that God placed the duty of Stewardship upon humanity. It is the role of humanity to preserve the environment. Genesis 1:27 clearly asserts that God created human beings and this is fundamental to environmental justice which affirms the social and economical right as well as environmental self determination . The basic assumption of this paper is that, environmental justice is the spring board for sustainable development. The researcher of this paper has seen to it that deforestation is devastating the environment, good arable land is eroding, streams are getting polluted or drying up and women have to go further to find ever-scarcer firewood in the rural areas. More to this people are fighting to lay their hands on gold, diamonds, silver, emeralds, ivory, petroleum and the like. All these constitute what we call environment. If people could learn to be in harmony with the environment, there will be environmental sustainability hence development. The goal of this paper is to argue that human beings were placed on this earth to maintain it and live in harmony with it. If people manage to be just to the environment then there will be peace in the world. The other basis of this paper is that the issue of environmental justice is Biblical and that human activities have an effect on the environment hence causing an imbalance in the ecosystem with no peace at all. The paper is based on Mathew 7:15-20 where Jesus talked about bearing good fruits through which God’s people are recognised. This paper will suggest that we need to rethink our understanding of the relation of humanity to nonhuman nature and to develop a more adequate theology of nature for representing God’s relation to the created order. This article intends to offer some biblical-theological considerations to be borne in mind in the ecological discussion. It does not deal with the practicalities of stewardship of the environment per se but suggests a framework within which that stewardship can be fostered. The article tries to raise the theology of environmental justice and see how it can help us to be just and peaceful in this world. The paper will argue that although the importance of individual action can't be overestimated, it will never solve a problem that is at heart. Until our profit-driven economies are redirected to take longrange effects into account, the earth will continue to be polluted and peace and justice will remain the words on the mouth but never achieved, practiced and cherished in human life. Book review and personal observations are going to be used to scrape together data for this paper.

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