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Why is it?

September 23, 2016

I saw this article, the results of a survey on global warming (or climate change if you prefer) yesterday.  In particular it asks the question whether we humans are causing the earth to warm.  The results show that 71% said yes, either absolutely or possibly; 21% said no, either probably not or definitely not, with the rest unsure.

The article then goes on to break down the demographics of the poll.  It seems like the younger you are the more willing you are to believe we are the cause, with millenials the highest and elders the lowest.  The more educated you are, the more likely you are to believe, with college grads the most and high school or less the least.  To nobody’s surprise liberals are more likely to believe than conservatives.

But the most interesting result is that evangelicals rank at the bottom as the least likely to believe humans are at fault.  I am trying to understand why that is.  Contrary to what some may believe I don’t think evangelicals, on average, are either dumber or smarter than the population at large so that can’t be it.

I can’t think of any theological reason why this should be so.  You might try and make the case that our ever-growing love affair with reformed theology would mean  we think that our sovereign God is the cause but that sovereignty could easily be exercised through humans.  Plus there are all sorts of things where you could make the case that human actions (medicines, fertilizer, etc.) interfere with the sovereignty of God and we are fine with it.  So, no, our unbelief can’t be theological.

So what is it based on?  Why do we lead the parade on climate change denying? Frankly I don’t know.  I suspect it might be a result of a growing feeling among us that science, government, and other voices that we deem to be secular, are hostile to our faith.  If that is the case we’d tend to oppose anything that comes from those perceived enemies.  In other words, since climate scientists and Obama say global warming is real our automatic reaction is to believe the opposite.

But, as I said, I don’t know.  Any ideas?  (Note:  Please don’t send me links to articles from climate change deniers “proving” it is a hoax, conspiracy or fabrication.  I am not asking whether it is real or not, just why evangelicals are the most hostile.)


From → Christianity

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