Share in God’s love for creation and take an active role in protecting the vulnerable interdependence we share with all other forms of life.
Biodiversity and Conservation
As we enter the “sixth extinction,” conservation matters.
Over the last two centuries, biodiversity on earth has plummeted. Once common species have become rare and the global extinction rate is approaching one species per hour. The tapestry of relationships between species, woven together over thousands of years, is unraveling. What is the appropriate Christian response to this sobering situation?
- Why should we protect biodiversity?
- How can we reflect God’s love in our interactions with other species?
- What does the Bible have to say about species other than humans?
- How much biodiversity is around us all the time?
- How does biodiversity affect the way we live?
- Is there moral significance to species extinction?
- How does a Christian worldview help us navigate the real-world complexities of conserving biodiversity?
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What will students know or be able to do after this unit?
- Reflect on God’s love for creation and give examples of ways humans can sacrificially love other creatures.
- Reflect on Bible verses related to biodiversity and non-human species.
- Identify biodiversity present in everyday life and how humans benefit from it.
- Cite examples of how different groups of life are interdependent and how declines in one group can harm another.
- Recognize the role of humans in species extinction.
- Evaluate the tradeoffs inherent to species conservation.
- Consider how the difference between an anthropocentric (human-centered) and a theocentric (God-centered) perspective on the value of non-human species influences conservation decisions.
Modules Included in this Unit
15.1 Meet: Conservation Biologist Steve Roels
Dr. Roels shares about loving the biodiversity God has created.
15.2 Grow: Love
In this brief devotional, students reflect on the love God has for all his creation and how we can follow his example in loving the other creatures he has made.
15.3 Engage: The Bible and Biodiversity
Students study Bible passages about creation and consider the significance of God creating so many species.
15.4 Experience: Backyard Biodiversity
Students learn how biodiversity is all around us and gain experience using modern technology to identify species.
15.5 Experience: Members of a Biodiverse Food Web
Students read an article about biodiversity and visit a grocery store or farmer’s market to observe beneficial biodiversity in their everyday lives.
15.6 Engage: A Lament for Extinct Creatures
Students wrestle with the consequences of extinction and are introduced to the concept of lament as an appropriate response to ecological destruction.
15.7 Integrate: Applying Our Values to Conservation
Students wrestle with the real-world complexities of biological conservation. Through a case study of a species with no apparent use for humans, they formulate a response to the question: do living things have intrinsic value, simply because God made them?
The BioLogos Integrate curriculum is superb. Of special note is the focus on cultivating virtues such as wonder, humility, and wisdom, all of which foster a deeper love of and care for God’s good earth.
- Unit lesson plans (PDF download; 28 pages)
- User Introduction and Overview (Google Doc)
- 6 student handouts (Google Docs)
- 10 images for printing or projecting (JPEG)
- Integrate Glossary (Google Docs, 64 pages)
- NGSS Alignment (Google Doc)