Won’t the Earth Be Destroyed Anyway? Why Some Christians Think Environmental Action Is Pointless

Have you ever tried to discuss ecological concerns with another Christian, only to have them say:

“Why bother? The world will be destroyed anyway. That’s in the book of Revelation.”

Not all Christians share the same views. Collectively, we hold a wide range of beliefs within Christianity about how to approach modern issues like environmental stewardship. And sometimes, diverse interpretations of scripture can lead to different conclusions about our responsibility towards the planet.

This view is rooted in and driven by:

  • Mistaken Beliefs Concerning Human Dominion over the Earth

  • End-Times Predictions

  • Singular Focus on Heaven and Spiritual Salvation

  • Distrust of Environmentalism

Let’s unpack why some people feel this way, and explore counter arguments.

Mistaken Beliefs Concerning Human Dominion over the Earth

When misinterpreted, verses in the Book of Genesys can promote the idea that humans are entitled to use the Earth and its resources at their discretion, because exploiting natural resources is not just acceptable but sanctioned by God.

As discussed in The Christian Call to Care for the Environment, that view is both incorrect and illogical. God did not give mankind permission to pillage and ravage the beautiful, pristine world He had only just created. Instead, God created humans in His own image and likeness, more highly endowed than animals, but made “a little lower than the angels.” Human beings were created to exercise extreme care over the Earth; to tend it, and to serve it. Mankind is incredibly honored and exalted by God because He gave us dominion and authority over the Earth and all living creatures. Cherishing His handiwork, God created humans last and purposefully, as stewards to safeguard and care for His wondrous creation.

End-Times Predictions

Some Christians believe that environmental issues are of little consequence, based on their understanding of biblical prophecies. They interpret the Book of Revelation and other prophetic texts as foretelling an inevitable, catastrophic end of the world, followed by divine renewal. From this perspective, the eventual destruction and divine renewal of Earth diminish the significance of current environmental actions.

If the world get wrecked someday, it’s not pointless to care about it now. A proper understanding of human dominion makes it clear, we were put here to care for the Earth, for as long as we live on it. 

Chapters in the Book of Revelation, particularly Revelation 21 and 22 predict the ultimate restoration of creation, in the form of a “New Heaven and New Earth”, when God makes “all things new”. This restoration is not just of the physical environment but is also of the relational and spiritual order, with God’s presence eliminating all sources of suffering and evil. 

Before divine renewal happens, another restoration of the Earth is expected to take place during the Millennium—a thousand-year period of time when Christ will reign on Earth, bringing peace, justice, and righteousness before the final judgment and the creation of the New Heaven and New Earth. 

The belief that Christians will return with Jesus at His second coming before the Millennium is a view held within premillennial dispensationalism, a theological framework that interprets the Bible’s prophecies about the end times in a literal and future-oriented manner. 

According to this perspective, Jesus Christ will return to earth physically and visibly to defeat the forces of evil in a series of events culminating in the Battle of Armageddon. Following this victory, Christ will establish His thousand-year reign on earth.

Christians, along with Old Testament saints resurrected at Christ’s return are seen as returning with Christ to participate in His millennial reign. This idea is supported by verses such as Jude 1:14-15 and Revelation 19:14, which mention the saints coming with Jesus. These passages are interpreted to mean that those who were taken to heaven either through the Rapture or through death will return with Christ at His Second Coming to assist in establishing His kingdom on earth. 

If the Earth is a mess, it won’t stay that way. It seems likely that the people who return with Jesus will continue their mission as stewards of the planet. The Earth during this time is believed to be restored to its Edenic state, reversing the curse of sin. Nature will be harmonious, and peace will reign among all living things.

This belief is based on prophecies found in both the Old and New Testaments, such as Isaiah 11:6-9, which speaks of a harmonious kingdom where the wolf will live with the lamb, and a child will lead them.

The Millennium is a transitional period that prepares the world for the final judgment and the creation of a new heaven and new earth. At the end of the Millennium, Satan will be released for a final rebellion, which will be quickly suppressed, followed by the Great White Throne Judgment (Revelation 20:7-15). Afterward, the eternal state is ushered in with the New Heaven and New Earth (Revelation 21-22).

Of course, this interpretation of the end times reflects a particular eschatological viewpoint that is not universally held among all Christians, with other groups interpreting these events symbolically or applying them to different times and circumstances. Regardless, the mission God created humans to fulfill, that of caring for creation, continues during end time events.

Singular Focus on Heaven and Spiritual Salvation

Many Christians prioritize getting to Heaven and spiritual salvation over earthly issues such as environmental care. They see the planet and its problems as temporary and less important than the soul’s eternal destiny and the need to evangelize.

That’s true. But if God created humans to care for the Earth, Christians also have responsibility toward the environment. Caring for the Earth is not just a temporal concern but a spiritual duty we should strive to fulfill as we share the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Distrust of Environmentalism

Environmentalism, seen by some as a secular or even non-Christian ideology, is sometimes rejected because it’s perceived to prioritize the Earth over God. This skepticism stems from the view that environmental concerns are at odds with Christian beliefs. But are they? God loved this world so much, He created human beings to care for it. 


  • God created human beings to care for creation from the beginning until now.

  • Our stewardship will continue during the fulfillment of end times. Christians will work to restore the Earth until God makes all things new. Accordingly, it is proper to care for the Earth in present times.

  • There is no downside to cooperating with God’s plans.

Regardless of whether (or when) the current Earth is destroyed, we are called by God to protect the Earth as a sacred creation. This invites us to reevaluate our lifestyles, choices, and the impact we have on the planet. Christian stewardship is about making conscious decisions that align with a respect for all forms of life in accordance with God’s plan.


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