Click here to get the answers to the most commonly asked RBL questions.

Review of Biblical Literature Blog

The Bible and the Environment: Towards a Critical Ecological Biblical Theology
Horrell, David G.

London: Equinox, 2010 pp. ix + 161. $26.95

Series Information
Biblical Challenges in the Contemporary World


Description: Environmental issues have in recent years come to the centre stage of political and ethical debate. This is a crucial topic to engage in this series. Moreover, there has long been the charge, classically formulated by Lynn White Jr, that the biblical and Christian tradition has legitimated and encouraged humanity's aggressive domination of nature to serve human interests. Biblical visions of the future, with destruction for the earth and rescue for the elect, might also seem to discourage any concern for the earth's future or the welfare of future generations. In this volume, David Horrell sets out this context for discussion, and illustrates the diverse ways in which the Bible has been interpreted in relation to issues of ecology and the environment. A wide range of biblical texts are discussed, from Genesis to Revelation, and competing interpretations are contrasted and evaluated. This analysis shows that the Bible provides a thoroughly ambivalent legacy, which cannot straightforwardly provide positive teaching on care for the environment, but nor can it simply be seen as an anti-ecological book. Finally, then, Horrell argues that what is needed is the explicit development of an 'ecological hermeneutic'. This involves constructing certain interpretative lenses which both arise from the engagement between our contemporary context and the biblical text and also generate a new reading of the biblical tradition appropriate to face the challenges of the ecological issues that face humanity at the beginning of the third millennium.

Subjects: Methods, Literary Approaches, Hermeneutics

Login to Read the Review(s)

You must be a member of SBL to read the review(s). In May 2019, SBL improved security of its main site with a new login procedure that requires an email address and a password, instead of an SBL member number. RBLís login procedure is now synched to SBLís. Please use your email address and SBL password to log in to RBL. Your use of this site indicates your acceptance of RBLís Terms of Use.


Email Address
SBL Password
 
  
 Forgot Your Password
 Join SBL or Renew Membership


Review by Norman Habel
Published 6/26/2011
Citation: Norman Habel, review of David G. Horrell, The Bible and the Environment: Towards a Critical Ecological Biblical Theology, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2011).


Adobe Acrobat Reader
All RBL reviews are published in PDF format. To view these reviews, you must have downloaded and installed the FREE version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have the Reader or you have an older version of the Reader, you can download the most recent version now.

 

 
Privacy PolicyTerms of UseContact Us