Jesus regularly invokes nature in his teaching, drawing us into deeper relationship with the created world. But it’s not just Jesus inviting us to see creation as teacher and kin. The scriptures themselves help us see the important role of the created world in God’s story and saving work. This four-session Bible study explores how biblical stories of the natural world help us to grow our love for and commitment to God, other people and our beloved earth.
Weather: Powerful force for change
We can’t control the weather, but we can learn from it. Storms, rain, drought and wind shape the lives of human and non-human beings, both in scripture and today. As we face catastrophic storms and the weird weather of climate change, biblical stories of extraordinary weather convict and humble us. They show us how to live faithfully, moving us to act even when we feel powerless.
Creatures: Our siblings in praise and trust
Jesus invites us to consider the birds, but we’ll get to know biblical critters beyond the sparrows. We’ll look at biblical animals (some adorable, some terrifying) from ravens and lions to a big fish, paired creatures on the ark, and that sneaky serpent in Eden. Stories of human and animal interactions in Scripture help to reorient our relationships with the non-human world, while pulling us into deeper trust in God.
Rivers: Springs of life and hope
Fresh water. Most of life on our planet depends on it, and the story of God’s saving work flows alongside it, through stories of biblical rivers that offer a vision of flourishing creation. Together we’ll journey from the rivers in Eden to the prophetic springs in the desert, and from Jesus’ baptism at the river Jordan to the crystalline river of life in Revelation. We’ll discover how rivers are sites of healing, restoration, identity and imagination.
Food: Daily bread for the health of the world
Most of us hunt, harvest and forage in grocery store aisles. We’ve forgotten the ways our food first comes to us—from fields, flocks, forests and farms. Considering our relationship with creation and our faithful stewardship of the earth means paying attention to the ways we eat. In this final session, we’ll see how stories of food in scripture offer us ways of faithful eating that are responsible, celebratory and delicious. Locust and wild honey, anyone?