Considering Michael Northcott’s “A Political Theology of Climate Change”

Michael Northcott does not shy away from calling the climate crisis an apocalypse. However, he sees it as an apocalypse in the biblical sense of the word, which is to say, climate change makes “visible the relationship which was formerly hidden between the foundation and structure of the earth and human history” (p. 16). In the popular mind the term ‘apocalypse’ is associated with destruction, but in the biblical world it also carries the connotation of revealing something that was hidden. As the line from Northcott’s book quoted above suggests, both senses of the word are appropriate here. The burden of A Political Theology of Climate Change (Eerdmans, 2013) is to show how climate change exposes, as a thoroughgoing failure, the Enlightenment’s disconnection of human society from its environmental moorings.

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