Language of God

4. Faith & Soil

March 27, 2019

Amidst a culture fostering skeptical apathy and fatalist visions of our planet’s future, how can we begin to strive toward a renewed creation? In this episode, our producer, Colin Hoogerwerf appeals to Dr. Steve Bouma-Prediger, Dr. Dan Richter, and Dr. Norman Wirzba in order to gain a richer view of these complicated issues. Colin invites these experts to reflect on how the role dirt has played in our lives has evolved since Biblical times, and how this may be connected to humility. They examine etymology, reflect on the Biblical call to be stewards of creation, and review findings in soil science to confront these questions with an eye for hope. The result—a fresh vision of our human relationship to the Earth.

Dr. Steve Bouma-Prediger is Professor of Reformed Theology at Hope College in Holland Michigan. He received his Ph.D. in religious studies from the University of Chicago in 1992 and has also earned a Master of Divinity from Fuller Seminary and a Master of Philosophy from the Institute for Christian Studies. He holds a B.A. in math and computer science from Hope College. Dr. Bouma-Prediger chairs the Campus Sustainability Advisory Committee in addition to overseeing the Environmental Studies minor at Hope.

Dr. Daniel D. Richter is Professor of Soils and Forest Ecology at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University. He co-authored Understanding Soil Change (Cambridge University Press) and his research has further revealed the extensive concomitance soil shares with ecosystems and the earth’s environment as a whole. He received his B.A. from Lehigh University in 1973 and his Ph.D. from Duke University in 1980.

Dr. Norman Wirzba is Professor of Theology, Ecology, and Rural Life at Duke University. He holds a Primary Appointment at Duke University’s School of Divinity and a Secondary Appointment at the Nicholas School of the Environment. His research explores the intersections of philosophy, sustainable agriculture, and ecology through a theological lens.

Find a conversation about this episode at the BioLogos Forum.

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