I recently spoke at Destiny Church in Edinburgh. That Sunday was the final talk in a series they had been doing entitled, “God and The Headlines”. They had previously considered, “God and Suicide”, “God and Gender”, “God and Politics”; and the title they gave me was “God and the Environment”. That is a hugely important topic and one which everyone in our culture is talking about from Greta Thunberg to David Attenborough, and yet Christians often have a reputation for not caring about that issue, an accusation which shuts them down in evangelistic conversations. The accusation comes in, “you guys have nothing to say about the great issues of the day”. The other side of the coin is that very often Christians who do instinctively care about the environment, don’t know how to think about that issue theologically. However, when you handle the topic well, some amazing evangelistic opportunities arise!
I finished my talk by landing the message on the gospel. When we consider what the chief environmental issues are, perhaps even more significant than climate change or plastic in the oceans, are the core issue which underlie them, such as greed, selfishness and apathy. Those are very human, spiritual issues – which you can’t solve using science, because we actually need a spiritual transformation. So the gospel has something very powerful to say about that. I ended by explaining the gospel and that spiritual transformation. Peter Anderson, the pastor at Destiny closed the service by inviting people to come to Christ in response to the message; and wonderfully somebody did in the morning, and two more folk in the later service, which also included an informal Q&A, with a much more ‘student-y’ audience.
My “God and the Environment” talk at Destiny in Edinburgh was recorded and can be found here: https://youtu.be/BQ48spE-Jxw
Editor’s note. As well us kindly sending us the link to the video of the talk, one of Destiny’s leaders said:
Andy was engaging, informative and really gave us a lot to think about concerning the Christian response to the environmental challenges that face our world.
– Graeme Williamson.