The Green Bible: A Timely Idea Deeply Flawed
Horrell, David G.
This article offers a critical review of the recently published Green Bible (HarperCollins, 2008), a ‘green-letter edition’ intended to enable readers to discover the Bible’s message concerning humanity’s duty to care for creation. Despite the often valuable and stimulating essays and study materials that surround the ‘green-letter edition’ of the biblical text, the idea at the heart of the project is deeply flawed. It fails to do justice to the fact that the biblical material is, as on other ethical issues, profoundly ambivalent, requiring careful and constructive interpretation which is, in turn, open to debate and contestation. Concepts such as stewardship, which are presented here as simply what the Bible teaches, are interpretative constructions whose hermeneutical and ethical value may be questioned. A coherent ‘green’ message cannot come simply from lining up supposedly relevant biblical texts but only from creative and constructive interpretation of the Bible.
© 2010 by SAGE Publications. Post-print version.
Vol. 121 (4), pp. 180 - 86