Recently, James Merritt, the young Christian largely responsible for the so-called Southern Baptist Environment & Climate Initiative, declared, “God is green.” I would like to say simply and emphatically, “God is not green.” We do ourselves and the gospel no good when we adopt the categories of postmodern man and conform God to them.
I take this statement as one of naïveté. And it must not be allowed to stand. For one thing, the statement is, inherently, a political one. The term itself arises from the Green Party political movement. One can speak of concern for the environment or of human dominion over creation without calling himself green. To be green means to some degree to ascribe to a set of assumptions concerning the balance of nature. These assumptions are only inappropriately ascribed to God, which brings me to a second point—theology.
One can surely be sensitive to the environment and responsible for reducing pollution and waste. In a sense, this would mean being green (at least a little bit). But the green movement is, by and large, a movement toward monism (or one-ism); it is intentionally a move away from the personal, holy God of the Bible.
We must not fail to point this out at every turn. I have blogged about this before, but it is tremendously important. The people of America are in more danger from this theological monism than they are from Islam. Islam is murderous and dangerous to be sure. However, it is openly combative. We know its threat; it is the threat of a gun, a bomb, or a sword. Monism is more insidious; it destroys like termites destroy, from the inside out. It dissolves human beings and everything else into One. It is ironic, but monism dissolves everything into nothing. We become (as the Eastern religions put it) as a drop of water into the sea—irrelevant and absorbed nothingness.
The Green movement is, by and large, a movement toward monism. This monism recognizes human beings, animals, plants, spirits, and God as One. For monism, the key is to maintain the balance of the one (i.e., “the force”). To be green is to be in tune with the One, to be submitted to the premise of balance of all things; it is to forsake both justice and mercy, expecting everyone to “go with the flow.” Rest assured, God is not green.