SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

 
vol.22 número1The violent, rhetorical-ideological God of Nahum'n Verkenning van tendense in profetenavorsing índice de autoresíndice de assuntospesquisa de artigos
Home Pagelista alfabética de periódicos  

Serviços Personalizados

Artigo

Indicadores

Links relacionados

  • Em processo de indexaçãoCitado por Google
  • Em processo de indexaçãoSimilares em Google

Compartilhar


Old Testament Essays

versão On-line ISSN 2312-3621
versão impressa ISSN 1010-9919

Old testam. essays vol.22 no.1 Pretoria  2009

 

Challenges in the search for an ecotheology

 

 

Peet van Dyk

Unisa

Correspondence

 

 


ABSTRACT

It is the purpose of this article to expose the reasons why ecological issues previously played such an insignificant role in biblical theology and thereby introduce some burning questions which need to be discussed in future by ecotheologians. The Bible is often accused of being hostile or indifferent toward the environment. The main focal points for these accusations were: the idea expressed in Genesis 1:28 and Psalm 8 that humans should subdue the earth and rule over it, an anthropocentric viewpoint, changes in social structure brought about by patriarchal monotheism, the negative evaluation of the wilderness concept and the problematic land promises in the Pentateuch. The absence of a biblical concept of nature and the lack of attention given to the earth in wisdom literature were further identified as reasons why the Bible may seem indifferent to the earth. For various other philosophical and theological reasons, nature and the environment have not featured prominently (if at all) in biblical theology. Various urgent questions are posed to ecotheologians in conclusion.


 

 

“Full text available only in PDF format”

 

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Anderson, B. Creation in the Old Testament. Philadelphia: Fortress, 1984.         [ Links ]

_____ From Creation to New Creation: Old Testament Perspectives. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1994.         [ Links ]

Barr, J. "Man and nature: the ecological controversy and the Old Testament." Pages 48-75 in Ecology and Religion in History. Edited by Spring, D. & Spring, E. New York: Harper & Row, 1974.         [ Links ]

Berger, P. The Sacred canopy: Elements of a Sociological Theory of Religion. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1969.         [ Links ]

Brueggemann, W. The Land: Place as Gift, Promise and Challenge in Biblical Faith. Philadelphia: Fortress, 1977.         [ Links ]

_____ Texts under Negotiation. The Bible and Postmodern Imagination. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1993.         [ Links ]

Buber, M. I and Thou. Transl. W. Kaufmann. New York: Charles Scribner's sons, 1970.         [ Links ]

Carley K. "Psalm 8: An apology for dominion." Pages 111-124 in Readings from the Perspective of Earth. Edited by Habel, N. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000.         [ Links ]

Clifford, R. J. & Collin, J. J. Creation in the Biblical Traditions. Washington: Catholic Biblical Association of America, 1992.         [ Links ]

Coetzee, J. H. "'Yet thou hast made him little less than God': reading Psalm 8 from a bodily perspective." Old Testament Essays 19/3(2006): 1124-1138.         [ Links ]

_____ "Psalm 104: a bodily interpretation of 'Yahweh's history'." Old Testament Essays 21/2(2008): 298-309.         [ Links ]

Conrad, E. W. "Messangers in the sky." Pages 86-95 in Readings from the perspective of earth. Edited by Habel, N. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000.         [ Links ]

Creegan, N. H. "Theological foundations of the ecological crisis." Stimulus 12/4(2004): 30-34.         [ Links ]

Diamond, J. M. "The environmentalist myth in archaeology." Nature 324/6(1986): November, 19-20.         [ Links ]

Dyrness, W. A. "Environmental ethics and the covenant of Hosea 2." Pages 263-278 in Studies in Old Testament Theology. Edited by Hubbard, R. L., Johnston, R. K. & Meye, R. P. Dallas: Word Publishing, 1992.         [ Links ]

Eaton, H. "Ecofeminist contributions to an ecojustice hermeneutics." Pages 54-71 in Readings from the Perspective of Earth. Edited by Habel, N. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000.         [ Links ]

Fretheim, T. "'Because the whole earth is mine'". Interpretation 50(1996): 229-239.         [ Links ]

Habel, N. ed. Readings from the Perspective of Earth. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000a.         [ Links ]

_____ "Introducing the earth Bible." Pages 25-37 in Readings from the perspective of earth. Edited by Habel, N. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000b.         [ Links ]

_____ "Guiding ecojustice principles." Pages 38-43 in Readings from the perspective of earth. Edited by Habel, N. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000c.         [ Links ]

_____ The Earth story in the Psalms and the Prophets. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2001a.         [ Links ]

_____ The earth Bible: Progress report, March 2001. Ecotheology 6/1&2(2001b): 200-204.         [ Links ]

Habel, N. & Wurst, V. eds. The Earth Story in Genesis. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000.         [ Links ]

Habel, N. & Wurst, S. eds. The Earth Story in Wisdom Traditions. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2001.         [ Links ]

Habel, N. & Balabanski, V. eds. The Earth Story in the New Testament. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2001.         [ Links ]

Harrison, P. "Subduing the earth: Genesis 1, early modern science, and the exploitation of nature." Journal of Religion 79/1(1999): 86-109.         [ Links ]

Hasel, G. F. Old Testament Theology: Basic Issues in the Current Debate. 4th ed. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1991.         [ Links ]

Hiebert, T. The Yahwist's Landscape: Nature and Religion in Early Israel. New York: Oxford University Press, 1996.         [ Links ]

Hiers, R. H. Ecology, biblical theology, and methodology: Biblical perspectives on the environment. Zygon 19/1(1984): 43-59.         [ Links ]

Jobling, D. & Loewen, N. "Sketches for earth readings of the book of Amos." Pages 72-85 in Readings from the Perspective of Earth. Edited by Habel, N. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 2000.         [ Links ]

Koehler, L. & Baumgartner, W. eds. Lexicon in Veteris Testamenti Libros. Leiden: Brill, 1958.         [ Links ]

Leal, R. B. Wilderness in the Bible: Toward a Theology of Wilderness. New York: Peter Lang, 2004.         [ Links ]

Leopold, A. A Sand County Almanac. New York: Oxford University Press, 1970.         [ Links ]

Limburg, J. "Down-to-earth theology: Psalm 104 and the environment." CurTM 21(1994): 340-346.         [ Links ]

Loader, J. A. "Image an order: Old Testament perspectives on the ecological crisis." Pages 6-28 in Are we killing God's earth? Edited by Vorster, W. Pretoria: University of South Africa, 1987.         [ Links ]

Magee, B. The Story of Philosophy. London: Dorling Kindersley, 1998.         [ Links ]

Moltmann, J. God in creation: An ecological doctrine of creation. London: SCM Press, 1985.         [ Links ]

Moscow Conference. "Preserving & cherishing the earth. An appeal for joint commitment in science & religion." No pages. Cited 7 January 2009. Online: http://earthrenewal.org/Open_letter_to_the_religious_.htm.         [ Links ]

Propp, V. Morphology of a Folktale. 2nd ed. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1968.         [ Links ]

Quinn, D. 1996. The Story of B. New York: Bantam.         [ Links ]

_____ Ishmael: An Adventure of Mind and Spirit. London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1998.         [ Links ]

Simkins, R. A. Creator and Creation: Nature in the Worldview of Ancient Israel. Peabody: Hendrickson, 1994.         [ Links ]

Steck, O. H. World and Environment. Nashville: Abingdon, 1978.         [ Links ]

Tucker, G. M. Creation and the limits of the world: Nature and history in the Old Testament. HBT 15(1993): 105-118.         [ Links ]

_____ Rain on a land where no one lives: The Hebrew bible on the environment. Journal for Biblical Literature 116/1(1997): 3-17.         [ Links ]

Van Dyk, P. J. A Brief History of Creation. Pretoria: Unisa Press, 2001.         [ Links ]

_____ "Mythical linkage and mythical frameworks." Old Testament Essays 18/(2005): 863-878.         [ Links ]

Van Heerden, S. W. "Norman Habel se interpretasie van Genesis 1:1-2:4a binne die raamwerk van die Earth Bible Project." Old Testament Essays 18/2(2005): 371-393.         [ Links ]

Von Rad, G. Gesammelte Studien zum Alten Testament. 3. Aufl. München: Kaiser, [1936] 1965.

_____ Genesis. A commentary. London: SCM Press, 1966.         [ Links ]

White, L. "The historical roots of our ecological crisis." Science 155(1967): 1203-1207.         [ Links ]

Zimmerli, W. "The place and limit of wisdom in the framework of Old Testament theology." Scottish Journal of Theology 17 (1964): 146-158.         [ Links ]

 

 

Correspondence:
Peet van Dyk
Professor of Old Testament
Department of Old Testament and Ancient Near Eastern Studies
University of South Africa
PO Box 392, Pretoria, 0003, South Africa
E-mail: vdykpj1@unisa.ac.za