Monday, April 8, 2013

Stewardship Series

When Michael and I were deciding to change our diet and lifestyle, we wondered how diet, exercise, and health were addressed in Scripture. It's also come up in several conversations we've had with believers (But didn't Jesus eat fish? God called for animal sacrifices, right? What about God's instruction to Adam to rule over the earth?). We too had these questions and weren't sure what the Bible said about all of these issues.

So we took some time to research these topics in Scripture and from other Christian-based sources. The more we dug into these issues, the more I realized that it would be way too much information to present in only one blog post. So I decided to break it up in a 4-part blog series related to the concept of stewardship.

Stewardship refers to the management of another's property or resources. A steward is a person responsible for the property in question, or simply, a manager or administrator. When God created man in His image in Genesis 1:26, He instructed that they "rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth." Later in verse 28 He said, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth."

According to Bible Study Tools, "rule" means to have dominion over, and "subdue" means to bring into subjection, bondage, or under foot. But these words never mean "to eat".

So it is clear that mankind has been instructed to be stewards of this planet and all that lives on it. But how does this command apply in our world today? What does that concept of stewardship look like today? Is America on the right track? Is anyone? Are you?

Over the next four posts, we will take a closer look at some issues that pertain to our stewardship of God's creation.

Part 1: Earth -- How does animal agriculture affect our planet?
Part 2: Food -- What food source did God intend for us to eat?
Part 3: Animals -- How does God say we should treat animals?
Part 4: Body -- What does honoring our temple (physical body) look like today?

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