Why worship Jehovah...?
... because He will provide our rescue
... because He will provide our rescue
A Little Foresight
As the notion of a Divine is too embarrassing for many to speak of, let us place that notion aside for a moment. So now, knowing that the climate crisis will surpass our tolerance, and that there will come a time when civilisation will be unable to cope with it, let us try to imagine what life will be like on our last day…
The Last DayIt has been several weeks since the last democracy experienced a breakdown in governance. They experienced yet another once-in-a-thousand-years flood - the new norm of the modern-day climate-fuelled events - but this one did not recede. The populations of three – now seemingly permanently- flooded towns - asked the government for help, but they were unable; and so the people refuse to pay taxes of any sort. It was not long before the dissent spread to other areas.
The Prime Minister’s peers abroad could not offer any assistance – they too had succumbed to unexpected climate events, and their own government has become something of a poisoned chalice, with nobody wanting the responsibility of alleviating the impossible. In some countries, louder but less-conventional groups assumed the reins of power, but beyond an initial surge of populist attitude they proved no more effective at solving the issue than their predecessors… Worldwide diplomatic relations continued to become fractured and unstructured.
Weather is not weather anymore – the fluctuations are more akin to a fairground ride. Consequences for travel, farming and general living are difficult to express adequately – they are all possible, but with much less certainty of success. Everything seems like a bad Hollywood disaster movie, except it isn’t. Restrictions continue to be enforced on financial and currency markets, as each country fears its liquid wealth might be diverted elsewhere. At a more basic level, people are very frightened, which has paralysed national and community works, and that unanswered call for government to do something has brought civil disorder, with far too few police to stem the new- status quo of unrest.
Last week saw another climate bomb – as they have been labelled – nobody really knows what happened or when it will happen again, just that the weather system suffered a sudden and dreadful bruising. Thoughts of the care of endangered species seems to have dissipated – there is too much stress on humans. Care for the environment has long since evaporated, as that environment seems intent on harming everything it touches – and it is difficult to recycle waste when the services are no longer operating.
Some scientific types continue to analyse the environmental data, but with a sense of awe now that almost all of the former dynamics have been over-ridden by the new. Nobody mentions global warming anymore, the need to keep below 4 degrees by the end of the century… and few recall that the target used to be a single degree. Infact the usual hypnotic aspects of climate change - such as observing temperature anomalies, Arctic Ice cover and ocean temperature - have become old hat: the newer dynamics are so much more immediate and sudden, but lack the predictability which made hypothesis possible from scientific observation.
There is talk of the rapture and Armageddon among religious groups, but even they have no confidence – this is not how they expected things to be. The luxury of wistful thinking in times of stability has been replaced with a desperate plea for something good to happen - except even the relatively benign days seem more like a pregnant pause than a reason to relax. Each church sings songs of praise fervently – yet no longer feeling special as the one-true-religion; they hear other churches singing and are pleased that their pleas are being echoed elsewhere – this curious uniting of churches only needed the climate to run out of control in order to achieve it.
There are more people experiencing total stress than there are physical ailments. Nobody is looking very far into the future - except perhaps those parents of grown-up children who still yearn for a grandchild, but don’t expect to see one, because they are not sure how many tomorrows they might see. In many minds, the flow of life has fundamentally changed, and nobody is quite sure what has replaced it.
…Somewhere in the back of his mind, a government mandarin recalls a memory concerning the last war – of the national day of prayer – and a vague notion that we should call for help. He is not afraid to voice it – he too being very unsure of seeing tomorrow. The notion seems less unpalatable than ten years’ ago when it was postulated to governments – today every world leader is searching for help, guidance, anything to prevent them from presiding over the incidental collapse of their nation’s civilisation. The murmur quickly turns into an animated discussion, and – lacking safe air transport - they arrange for their representatives to meet together in whatever safe location they may be. In the United Nations headquarters, in most country’s Embassy-land, in conference cities where there happen to be situated, state representatives – of any rank - they get together and call to the Heavens, in absolute fear for their lives...
That is one scenario... but it could all be so much more sedate. So here is a less fearful one which is within our grasp...
Sometime Before The Last DayPeople with responsibilities and pride in their intellect feel self-conscious about discussing the Divine. However, this unpalatable notion of acknowledging a Creator could have been approached gently – not with belief or acquiescence perhaps, that might be too much to hope for, but with a vague murmur of the notion, enjoying the comfort of letting the matter be aired, while keeping the optino to declare that they are merely reporting a rumour they have heard…
…Over the years, some people mentioned that they actually believe in a Creator : that there is a chapel attached to the government buildings and that many statesmen and women do attend there. Some others mention that there are some bishops on hand to advise the government – why bishops unless there were some credence given…?! And then some Jewish people will intervene with the bombshell that God is not a mere belief to them, but a living part of their history; other nations such as Egypt will attest to the same thing, for less enthusiastic reasons… and credence begins to grow ever so gently.
Then long before that Last Day, when a few - but certainly not every - nation have suffered collapse of civilisationdue to extreme climate events, there will be a general admittance of impotence over the climate crisis. Leaders will no longer be afraid to admit it - the dissolving of governance in a few overseas territories is sufficient proof! - and they postulate that it might be worthwhile to call for help – “after all, there have been no alternatives for ten years!” – and so they decide to convene at the most prominent setting they can arrange. The best of their representatives – the heads of state and the heads of government themselves – arrive there for the historic call. They stand there is quiet resignation, in acceptance of their limitations - comforted by the number of their peers – but with only a little fear over the growing crisis: they are making a united call for help, before the situatio ngrows too difficult for their countries...
It is so much better to move into the new era with quiet humility rather than in absolute panic. Both the climate crisis and God’s intervention will be the same regardless – and everyone alive will breathe a delighted cry of relief regardless – but unlike the desperate call, the one of humility will change our steps to something much more beneficial: a world-wide sense of appreciation.
These are our two roads to the future. Some may contend that there is a veritable tree of scientific solutions just waiting to be paired with human willingness… strangely that combination has not materialised so far – and there is the incongruous point that just because we might cease to be intransigent does not mean that the crisis will, at that time, still be in a form that we can alleviate – climate physics does not pander to human foibles. So in every route we are reliant on God’s intervention – the very issue which the Creator stated at the beginning.