Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

2014 Edition
| Editors: David A. Leeming

Ecology and Christianity

  • Kirsten S. OhEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6086-2_9300

But ask the animals, and they will teach you;

the birds of the air, and they will tell you,

ask the plants of the Earth, and they will teach you;

and the fish of the sea will declare to you.

Who among these does not know

That the hand of the Lord has done this?

In his hand is the life of every living thing

and the breath of every human being

(Job 12: 7–10 NRSV).

Recently, Christianity has reflected deeply on its commitment and engagement with the ecological quandaries and crisis of our modern, technological world. Environmentalists have opened up awareness of the negative impact Christianity has had on the environment through the interpretation of passages such as “… fill the Earth and subdue it; and have dominion over… every living thing…” as a license to harm the planet (Gen 1:28 NRSV). Christianity has been charged with contributing, actively or passively, to the ecological crisis including pollution, extinction of many plants and animal life, and climate change (Leiss 1994; White 1967...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Attfield, R. (2006). Environmental sensitivity and critiques of stewardship. In J. R. Berry (Ed.), Environmental stewardship: Critical perspectives (pp. 76–91). New York: T. & T. Clark International.Google Scholar
  2. Bauckham, R. (2010). Bible and ecology: Rediscovering the community of creation (Sarum theological lecture series). Waco: Baylor University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Bookchin, M. (2005). The ecology of freedom: The emergence and dissolution of hierarchy. Oakland: AK Press.Google Scholar
  4. Bouma-Prediger, S. (1995). The greening of theology: The ecological models of Rosemary Radford Ruether, Joseph Sittler, and Jürgen Moltmann. Atlanta: Scholars Press.Google Scholar
  5. Clinebell, H. (1996). Ecotherapy: Healing ourselves, healing the Earth. Minneapolis: Fortress Press.Google Scholar
  6. Cobb, J. B., Jr. (1992). Sustainability: Economics, ecology, and justice. Maryknoll: Orbis Books.Google Scholar
  7. Deane-Drummon, C. (1997). Ecology in Jürgen Moltmann’s theology (Vol. 75). Lewiston: Edwin Mellen.Google Scholar
  8. Feuerbach, L. (1957). The essence of Christianity. New York: Harper & Row.Google Scholar
  9. Hall, D. J. (1986). Imaging God: Dominion as stewardship. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans.Google Scholar
  10. Leiss, W. (1994). The domination of nature. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press.Google Scholar
  11. McGrath, A. E. (2002). The reenchantment of nature: The denial of religion and the ecological crisis. New York: Doubleday.Google Scholar
  12. McKibben, B. (2005). The Christian paradox: How a faithful nation gets Jesus wrong. Harper’s Magazine, 8, 1–8.Google Scholar
  13. Moltmann, J. (1985). God in creation: A new theology of creation and the spirit of God (trans: Kohl, M.). San Francisco: Harper and Row.Google Scholar
  14. Moo, D. J. (2006). Nature in the new creation: New Testament eschatology and the environment. Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, 49(4), 449–488.Google Scholar
  15. Næss, A., & Rothenberg, D. (1989). Ecology, community, and lifestyle: Outline of an ecosophy. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  16. Ruether, R. R. (2000). Ecofeminism: The challenge to theology. In D. T. Hessel & R. R. Ruether (Eds.), Christianity and ecology: Seeking the well-being of Earth and humans (pp. 97–112). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Sittler, J. (1972). Essays on nature and grace. Philadelphia: Fortress Press.Google Scholar
  18. Sorrell, R. D. (1988). St. Francis of Assisi and nature: Tradition and innovation in Western Christian attitudes toward the environment. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  19. White, L. (1967). The historic roots of our ecological crisis. Science, 155, 1203–1207.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Practical TheologyAzusa Pacific UniversityAzusaUSA