White (1967:1203-1207) places the blame for the current raping of our environment on the Christians’ interpretation of Genesis 1:28 (“God blessed them and said to them: ‘Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground”). White believes that the Christian interpretation of this verse teaches man to be arrogant toward nature and that God gives man the green light to exploit nature as man pleases. White has leveled serious accusations against the early Christians. This study interprets the Old Testament, New Testament and ancient theologians’ attitude towards creation and God. It deals with the accusations in accordance with the relevant Biblical and post-Biblical writers, to find the basis for the environmental crisis not in Christianity, but in animism. It is true that the ancient Christian writers were indeed more concerned about the hereafter than about the world as it is now. Yet, when one scrutinizes ancient writings, one soon realizes that in ancient biblical- and post-biblical time, earth stewardship has a profundity undreamed of by even the most speculative ecological philosophers.
Dissertation (MA (Greek))--University of Pretoria, 2005.