As God’s people we recognize the need to preserve our fragile ecosystem, but sadly there is much controversy over this subject. Let’s look into the correct environmental approach we should have as sons and daughters in God’s family. We’re not talking about radical environmentalism, but the biblical topic of caring for our planet as God intended. What can we do? What should we do?
INTRO: America Recycles Day was observed on November 15, six days ago. It is the only nationally recognized day dedicated to encouraging Americans to recycle and to buy recycled products. Celebrating its 12th year, it has grown to include millions of Americans pledging to increase their recycling habits at home and work and to buy products made with recycled materials.
In a slightly related vein: Earth Day 2009 was held on April 22. It marked the beginning of The Green Generation Campaign, which will also be the focus of the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day in 2010. With negotiations for a new global climate agreement coming up in December, Earth Day 2009 was a day of action and civic participation to defend The Green Generation’s core principles.
So, what about “Earth Day”? What about “America Recycles Day”?
S.P.S. : The Church of God, in many respects, has been on the forefront of ideas and efforts to take care of our planet. You may remember a booklet published by the Worldwide Church of God more than four decades ago titled, “Our Polluted Planet.”
As God’s people, we recognize the need to preserve our fragile ecosystem, but sadly, Christianity in general has received a bad rap on this subject.
Let’s look into the correct environmental approach we should have as sons and daughters in God’s family. We’re not talking about radical environmentalism, but the biblical topic of caring for our planet as God intended. What can we do? What should we do?
I’ve titled this sermon today, “Staying Ahead of the Environmental Curve.”
BODY: Strangely, and perhaps unbelievably, in our society today Christianity is seen as being responsible for our environmental and ecological crisis! Some say that Christianity teaches that man has the right to plunder the earth for his selfish interests. Anti-Christian groups proclaim that if the earth is going to remain a place where life can exist, we humans must renounce the Christian religion.
It’s true that some authorities do blame Christianity for our current environmental problems. What should be our response to this accusation? Can this be refuted?
Some have asserted that we must return to pre-Christian religions—which venerated nature. Could you give an answer regarding what the Bible teaches about man's relationship to all the earth? What is God's instruction to man about the care of the earth and his place in it? How do we strike a balance between radical environmentalism and using the earth’s resources responsibly?
On a Web site about Hinduism and ecology, we find some of the teachings of a major non-Christian faith. Here is what is said about nature and our environment:
“Hinduism and Ecology: Kindle the Spirit: Venerate Nature”
The five basic elements—soil, water, fire, sky and air from which life has emerged—have all been objects of worship, forming an integral part of Indian tradition. The elements are deified, as they are believed to be protectors of life. But they can protect and bless us only if we give them due respect….
We regard our rivers as we would our own mother. We worship them. When we float a lamp on the dancing waves of the holy Ganga, Yamuna or Kaveri, we are only paying tribute to them. Worshipping them is only an expression of our gratitude for all that they have given us. http://www.experiencefestival.com/a/Hinduism_and_Ecology/id/5611199
According to Wikipedia:
“In the United States, the beginnings of an environmental movement can be traced as far back as 1739, when Benjamin Franklin and other Philadelphia residents, citing "public rights," petitioned the Pennsylvania Assembly to stop waste dumping and remove tanneries from Philadelphia's commercial district.
“The U.S. movement expanded in the 1800s, out of concerns for protecting the natural resources of the West, with individuals such as John Muir and Henry David Thoreau making key philosophical contributions.
“Muir came to believe in nature's inherent right, especially after spending time hiking in Yosemite Valley and studying both the ecology and geology…. The conservationist principles as well as the belief in an inherent right of nature were to become the bedrock of modern environmentalism.”
So, we see that some religions worship nature and some conservationists believe nature has inherent rights. So, what is the balance?
In the 1960s, “The World Tomorrow” program took an early environmental stance, decades ahead of most of the Christian community. The booklet Our Polluted Planet booklet debuted in 1968, and it addressed the scriptural blind-spot much of Christianity had adopted towards ecological themes. The booklet proclaimed in its conclusion: “Adam was told to ‘dress and keep’—not pollute and rape and ruin—his surroundings” (Genesis 2:15 Genesis 2:15And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
American King James Version×).
Even Ambassador College in East Texas pushed the church of God and Ambassador College into a “green” direction. The Texas campus used its farm-based location as a prototypical experimental community for addressing some of the ecological concerns emerging in this first wave of the environmental movement. Some of you may remember the “digester” that could consume and process trash, turning out compost from it in record time!
Today we want to use the Scripture as our benchmark in discussing this topic—not Eastern religion or superstition. As we’ve noted, there are extreme positions on both ends of the environmental spectrum—from worshiping nature to abusing it.
1. What Was the Original Instruction?
So, let's go back to God's original instruction to the first man and woman about their relationship to the earth's environment.
GENESIS 2:15 Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
What does "tend" mean? Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary defines “tend” as "to listen, to pay attention, and to apply oneself as a servant or a manager of operations."
What does "keep" mean? Merriam-Webster’s defines “keep” as "to take notice of by appropriate conduct, to fulfill, and to faithfully watch over and defend."
The instruction in Genesis 2:15 Genesis 2:15And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
American King James Version×is to protect and preserve God's creation because it is special and created by God. This was the original instruction.
The word "keep" in Genesis 2:15 Genesis 2:15And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.
American King James Version×infers that one role of mankind is that of faithful protector or watchman of God's creation. When the meanings of "tend" and "keep" are combined it should be noted that when God placed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, he wanted mankind to manage and care for His creation, as well as watch over and protect it. But, we are to worship Him, not the garden.
This instruction from God was not self-serving or solely for the sake of His creation. Rather, He understood that mankind would benefit from tending and keeping the Garden of Eden and the earth.
PROVERBS 27:18 Whoever keeps the fig tree will eat its fruit; So he who waits on his master will be honored.
Genesis chapter 2 does not give people the right to indiscriminately damage, pollute or destroy this planet. But, some say that Christianity is the cause of today’s pollution. Some critics point to Genesis 1:28 Genesis 1:28And God blessed them, and God said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.
American King James Version×as evidence that Christianity is to blame for the pollution of the planet.
GENESIS 1:26-28 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion [BBE-rule] over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
28* Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill [KJV-replenish] the earth and subdue it [BBE-be masters of it]; have dominion [BBE-be rulers] over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
BUT, verse 28 contains absolutely no language that instructs mankind to pollute or plunder the earth. What is contained in this verse is a command for mankind to fill (or replenish, KJV) the earth, along with an explanation of the resources God has provided to sustain mankind.
It could be argued that the instruction for mankind to multiply and use the earth's resources found in Genesis 1:28 Genesis 1:28And God blessed them, and God said to them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.
American King James Version×is going to be carried out by most of humanity, regardless of adherence to Christianity or any religion at all. Therefore, it is incorrect to blame acts of pollution and plundering only on Christianity.
True Christians will manage, replenish and sustain the environment. They will dress and keep it. That was the original instruction. Stay ahead of the environmental curve!
2. Did God Intend for the Earth to Remain in its Natural State?
What does the command to "subdue" the earth mean? What does it mean to be masters over it?
Remember that God had just called His creation "very good." So, in this context, what could "subdue" mean? This command implies that God did not intend for the earth to remain in its "natural" state in every case. But please note, this conflicts with the commonly held understanding of environmentalism.
God planted a garden (which included trees) in Eden and told Adam to work it and preserve it. Humans are to follow their Creator's example and plant gardens as the human population grows and spreads over the earth. We don’t just leave nature to itself in every situation. There is a time for pruning, clearing, thinning—depending on the circumstances and placement of the land.
In this context (verse 28), the word subdue would mean "bring into subjection" or "bring into bondage."
God created the plant kingdom to be able to grow and produce. Without the human and animal element included in Genesis, the earth would eventually become filled with plant life. This, however, was not God's desire. He commanded man to fill the earth.
The writings of Genesis guide humankind to follow God's example and plant gardens as they inhabit and fill the earth. The Creator provided an excellent learning situation in The Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve were shown that the earth could sustain their physical needs if they cared for it.
Even after their sin of disobeying God, Adam and Eve were told in Genesis 3 that the earth would still support them, but with more toil and pain. As mankind did spread across the earth, gardening and hunting had to follow for survival. It cannot all remain in its natural state: Just like my son’s bedroom cannot remain in its natural state! Stay ahead of the environmental curve!
3. To Whom Does the Earth Belong?
To whom does the earth belong? Has God given it to us to do with it whatever we will?
PSALM 24:1-2 The earth is the LORD’S, and all its fullness, The world and those who dwell therein.
2 For He has founded it upon the seas, And established it upon the waters.
Everything we have is God’s, even our own life.
Job 1:20-21 Job 1:20-21  Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down on the ground, and worshipped,
 And said, Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.
American King James Version×Then Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped.
21 And he said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD.”
Job states that we enter and leave life with nothing—not even our clothes survive! Everything else is from God.
God owns everything. So, how can mankind have "dominion" over the earthly creation? The answer lies in the concept of "stewardship."
MATTHEW 25:14-21 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them.
15 “And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey.
16 “Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents.
17 “And likewise he who had received two gained two more also.
18 “But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money.
19 “After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them.
20 “So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’
21 “His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
A faithful steward utilizes the resources entrusted to him. He develops them, he works with them. He even makes profit from them.
Humankind was given a special role in nature that no other being has. Mankind's position in nature is ordained by God, and God fitted humans for that position by creating people in His own image with superior capabilities, intelligence, and an aesthetic sense. Because of his position of dominance, man is responsible to God for how he rules or dominates his resources.
We are not owners, but managers of the earth. The parable in Matthew 25 deals with how well we manage what we are given by God. A good manager will invest, cultivate, grow, or expand with what he or she is given (without being wasteful or destructive). A manager who is hired and does not produce is considered lazy—as the parable goes on to show.
“He who has a slack hand becomes poor, But the hand of the diligent makes rich” (PROVERBS 10:4).
We have been given a special role to be able to cultivate using the resources from the earth. Even the animals have the instinct to construct homes and feed themselves using the earth's resources. But, humans have an additional aesthetic sense.
We have been created to appreciate beauty, art and taste. We love the beauty of the creation. We can critically reflect on art, culture and nature. Look at how nature can make us feel:
HOSEA 14:4-7 “I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely, For My anger has turned away from him.
5 I will be like the dew to Israel; He shall grow like the lily, And lengthen his roots like Lebanon.
6 His branches shall spread; His beauty shall be like an olive tree, And his fragrance like Lebanon.
7 Those who dwell under his shadow shall return; They shall be revived like grain, And grow like a vine. Their scent shall be like the wine of Lebanon.
God put Adam and Eve in a garden. A botanical garden has a calming, quieting effect on us. What a loss to humanity if we besmirch or destroy that which is sublime and beautiful in the earth! God owns it, and we are His operation managers, His stewards.
Successful businesses have known for a long time that one's environment affects worker productivity and morale. Many Fortune 500 companies now have interior landscaping because they found attractive floral arrangements make for employee contentment and higher productivity.
A close look at God's creation can create a sense of awe, from the molecular level to the cosmic level. A complexity in design can be quickly realized. People have different aesthetic tastes, but they generally include an enjoyment of some form of nature.
The earth belongs to God, but we are His stewards over it. We must appreciate what He has provided for us. Stay ahead of the environmental curve!
4. Can Sin Affect Nature?
COLOSSIANS 1:16 For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.
This verse demonstrates a God-centered approach. Mankind did not and cannot create all that is in heaven and on earth. An individual may adopt a human-centered approach, but the rest of the universe is not human-centered.
If the earth and all that is in it—including mankind—was made by God and for God, and if He retains ownership, then we should look for God’s values and ethics to properly manage the earth. So, what about sin?
This is an additional element to consider that we will not hear espoused by most of today’s environmentalists. Here it is: How does mankind's sins affect nature?
HOSEA 4:1-3 Hear the word of the LORD, You children of Israel, For the LORD brings a charge against the inhabitants of the land: “There is no truth or mercy Or knowledge of God in the land.
2 By swearing and lying, Killing and stealing and committing adultery, They break all restraint, With bloodshed upon bloodshed.
3 Therefore the land will mourn; And everyone who dwells there will waste away With the beasts of the field And the birds of the air; Even the fish of the sea will be taken away.
How can humanity truly solve its environmental problems while transgressing God's law? Ultimately, it can’t. The earth will suffer.
At some point, mankind's sins can be so severe that nature is affected. The first way is a direct intervention from God, such as is found in Hosea 4 here. The people of the land of Israel had turned their back on God. As a result, the land and sea were cursed.
We see this will happen in the future, even in Christ's millennial reign when “it shall be, whoever will not come up from all the families of the earth to Jerusalem to worship the King, Lord of Hosts, even on them shall be no rain.”
A second way mankind's sins can affect nature is simply the physical results of not caring for the earth. This can include severe over-hunting, over fishing or pollution. This can also create the same results found in Hosea 4. Whether an adverse effect on nature is caused by natural results of sin, or divine intervention, can only be known by God. It is up to us to avoid the sins that may create the adverse effect from either.
Sin can affect our environment.
5. Let’s look at five helpful principles, FROM GOD, on managing our environment.
a) A Sabbath Rest:
LEVITICUS 25:1-4 And the LORD spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai, saying,
2* “Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘When you come into the land which I give you, then the land shall keep a sabbath to the LORD.
3 ‘Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard, and gather its fruit;
4 ‘but in the seventh year there shall be a sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a sabbath to the LORD. You shall neither sow your field nor prune your vineyard.
It has since been proven that there is a benefit to agricultural land resting. This verse implies that if we’re not careful, we can ruin the land for future crops. We should be concerned about sustaining the land.
25:5-7 ‘What grows of its own accord of your harvest you shall not reap, nor gather the grapes of your untended vine, for it is a year of rest for the land.
6 ‘And the sabbath produce of the land shall be food for you: for you, your male and female servants, your hired man, and the stranger who dwells with you,
7 ‘for your livestock and the beasts that are in your land--all its produce shall be for food.
These verses describe an "if, then" relationship. If mankind follows God's command to observe a sabbath land rest, then mankind will be blessed with an increase of food. Modern research has supported the idea of land resting, and has demonstrated that most soil that is not rested becomes nutrient-deficient and requires artificial methods of fertilizing.
Today, many do not see the land as belonging to God, as do all things. Farmers must consider the sustainability of the land. Stay ahead of the environmental curve!
Let’s look at another principle of God on managing our environment:
b) Waste Disposal:
DEUTERONOMY 23:12-13 “Also you shall have a place outside the camp, where you may go out;
13 “and you shall have an implement among your equipment, and when you sit down outside, you shall dig with it and turn and cover your refuse.
God tells us to bury our wastes away from homes. How would this apply to production of toxic industrial waste? Would it be wise to build homes downwind of smokestacks emitting poisonous gases? Would God's law permit passing harmful liquid wastes into lakes and rivers?
Toxic industrial waste can certainly be more harmful than human waste in some cases. Therefore, it would be unwise to release these wastes where they would end up where an individual lives. If the wastes are knowingly released where it would only harm others, that would violate God's command to "love your neighbor as yourself."
Here’s another environmental principle you may not have considered. It’s actually an interesting idea:
c) No Industry One Day Every Week
EXODUS 35:2-3 “Work shall be done for six days, but the seventh day shall be a holy day for you, a Sabbath of rest to the LORD. Whoever does any work on it shall be put to death.
3* “You shall kindle no fire throughout your dwellings on the Sabbath day.”
Now, this doesn’t men we are supposed to freeze on the Sabbath day! So, what does it mean? How would universal obedience to this command improve the environment?
From the context, the kindling of fire has to do with one's occupation, our work, that is, industrial fires. Burning is one of the major sources of air pollution. In Tokyo, Japan in 1970, automobiles were not allowed in certain parts of the city one day a week as an experiment. Carbon monoxide was significantly reduced.
Observance of just this one command would likely bring many benefits we cannot even imagine, both physical and spiritual. This example of the experiment in Tokyo demonstrated that even a partial observance of resting from work for a small part of a city for one day brought tangible results. Quite simply, everyone should be observing the Sabbath, and the earth would benefit.
Here is another environmental principle from God’s word:
d) Conserving Our Forests:
What about our forested land? How do we manage our treed resources? Can we cut down trees, or do they have inherent rights? May man clear land to live on or should he learn to live with the way he finds the land?
JOSHUA 17:14-15 Then the children of Joseph spoke to Joshua, saying, “Why have you given us only one lot and one share to inherit, since we are a great people, inasmuch as the LORD has blessed us until now?”
15 So Joshua answered them, “If you are a great people, then go up to the forest country and clear a place for yourself there in the land of the Perizzites and the giants, since the mountains of Ephraim are too confined for you.”
Sir David Attenborough is a broadcaster and naturalist. His career as the respected face and voice of natural history programs has endured for more than 50 years. He is best known for writing and presenting the "Life" series, in conjunction with the BBC Natural History Unit, which collectively form a comprehensive survey of all life on the planet.
David Attenborough said, "It is a mistake to believe conservation is the opposite of development. That is a wildly simplified and misleading generalization. The fact is that unless we conserve, there is going to be nothing to develop."
There is no command in the Bible from God not to responsibly clear land for habitation. In Joshua 17, Joshua commands the crowded children of Israel to clear land to be able to spread out. This was not a command to destroy nature for destruction's sake. In fact, it has been shown that not properly thinning some forested areas, or allowing smaller fires to burn naturally, only allows for disastrous forest fires to rage years later.
BUT, there is a flip side to this, There is a caution and a balance to observe. We can’t clear land indiscriminately.
DEUTERONOMY 20:19-20 When you besiege a city for a long time, while making war against it to take it, you shall not destroy its trees by wielding an ax against them; if you can eat of them, do not cut them down to use in the siege, for the tree of the field is man’s food.
20 “Only the trees which you know are not trees for food you may destroy and cut down, to build siegeworks against the city that makes war with you, until it is subdued.
Even when the children of Israel were attacking an enemy in a foreign land, they were to follow certain commands concerning how they would treat the earth. These verses present an idea that while the children of Israel may be in the country of an enemy, the land there has done nothing wrong. The battle will eventually pass, and afterward there needs to be a habitable environment. Stay ahead of the environmental curve!
e) The Value of Animals:
We’ve looked a lot so far at trees and the natural environment. What about us and animals?
God greatly values His creation. All of it. God dedicated two days for the creation of sea and land animals. The sea creatures, winged birds, livestock, reptiles, and wild animals were commanded to be fruitful and multiply across the earth and seas.
God saw that His animal creations were good, so much so that He preserved all their kind from the great flood of Noah’s time.
PSALM 8:3-8 When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, The moon and the stars, which You have ordained,
4 What is man that You are mindful of him, And the son of man that You visit him?
5 For You have made him a little lower than the angels, And You have crowned him with glory and honor.
6 You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet,
7 All sheep and oxen--Even the beasts of the field,
8 The birds of the air, And the fish of the sea That pass through the paths of the seas.
Man was put in a position of responsibility, management and stewardship, and it includes over the birds, fish and animal kingdom.
God has created man in the image of Himself. None of the creatures on earth was created in the image of God. Man alone has cognitive capabilities that allow him to build character in order for him to grow in the knowledge and truth of God. No animals are able to receive the Holy Spirit and receive sonship at Christ's return.
So, with this important difference noted, are humans of greater worth than animals?
MATTHEW 12:10-12 And behold, there was a man who had a withered hand. And they asked Him, saying, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?” --that they might accuse Him.
11 Then He said to them, “What man is there among you who has one sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not lay hold of it and lift it out?
12 “Of how much more value then is a man than a sheep? Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.”
LUKE 12:6-7 “Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God.
7 “But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.
God has created man to rule over the earth and all the creatures upon it. It’s a management responsibility. God states in Matthew 12 and Luke 12 that man is worth more than sheep or sparrows. But, we should treat animals with respect because they are created by God.
For example, Exodus 20:10 Exodus 20:10But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD your God: in it you shall not do any work, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger that is within your gates:
American King James Version×states that all members of the household, servants, and animals should rest on the Sabbath. Deuteronomy 22:4 Deuteronomy 22:4You shall not see your brother's ass or his ox fall down by the way, and hide yourself from them: you shall surely help him to lift them up again.
American King James Version×tells us that we should help an animal if they are in pain or injured.
But, an important clarification: Romans 1:25 Romans 1:25Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
American King James Version×shows us that we should not put anything above God, including the animals He created. The worship of animals or nature described in this verse is by extension a violation of the second commandment. Some societies still worship animals to this day.
God places conditions in even how to make sure we don’t destroy a species. Animal conservation is very important. You can read just a small example in Deuteronomy 22 verses 6-7 if you wish.
Hunting animals to extinction is against God's law. Animals need to be left with the ability to sustain their species. Hunting an animal species to the point of extinction, or where others could easily cause extinction, would not be in harmony with the principles of God. Stay ahead of the environmental curve!
The challenge for man as stewards of God's earthly creation is to develop and use the earth's resources for mankind's benefit while maintaining a livable planet for all life.
This requires knowledge of God's law and a humble, prayerful seeking of God's mind and Spirit, not a pantheistic adoration of the creation.
We should seek the advice of our Creator who placed us in a position to subdue and care for His creation. God is not indifferent to how human activity affects His creation. Today, we see the mistreatment of God's creation and mankind ignoring much of our Creator's laws and eternal principles.
We do not worship the environment, but care and concern for God's creation should be part of a larger effort to follow our elder Brother, Jesus Christ, rather than a religion in itself. So, what have we learned?
• Look at the original instruction given to Adam and Eve.
• Mankind has dominion over the earthly creation and manages it for God.
• Sin can affect our environment.
• We are to care for and manage the earth.
• Do not diminish the earth's sustainability.
• Do not release wastes that will harm people where they dwell.
• Treat animals with care—do not hunt to extinction.
• Observe God's Sabbath in relation to farming the land and industrial production. Rest work animals on the Sabbath.
Stay ahead of the environmental curve! These are wonderful principles that the entire earth would benefit from if observed. In the Millennium, they will be observed! Pray, Thy Kingdom Come!