The Ultimate Resource

When God said to Adam and Eve…”Be fruitful and multiply”… this not only meant having children, but to be productive in life. God created humans to have worth, value and contribute to the world around them. This is core to the Biblical worldview.

Fifty years ago Stanford biologist Paul Ehrlich published “The Population Bomb.” In it he warned of a coming global crisis—unless the world could be persuaded to stop producing so many people. The book sketched out possible scenarios of hundreds of millions dying from starvation, England disappearing by the year 2000, India doomed, the average American’s lifespan falling to 42 by 1980, and so on.

The book sold three million copies and the social ethos of “population control” was born. Some even would declare overpopulation a graver threat than nuclear war. Mr. Ehrlich’s assertion about the limited “carrying capacity” of the Earth was considered a scientific fact.

However…this logic seemed to be flawed: Ehrlich stated that when a calf is born a country’s wealth rises, but when a baby is born it goes down. Really? A calf is worth more than a human being? What he missed recognizing is that human beings are more than just a higher form of animals with mouths to feed. They also come with God given minds that separate them from the rest of the animal kingdom.

Julian Lincoln Simon called the human mind “The Ultimate Resource.” And that’s why it never runs out. Human beings constantly find new and creative ways to harness the earth, increase the bounty for everyone and expand the number of seats at the table of plenty. Human ingenuity adapts to circumstances and turns what were once luxuries into everyday amenities. Commodities would become cheaper as humans found more cost-effective ways of extracting them or cheaper and cleaner alternatives (solar power). By almost any measure—life expectancy, infant mortality, poverty rate —things are getting better all the time.

A false understanding of scarcity can lead to fear and self-preservation. The idea of a finite supply of natural resource is only one part of the equation. As history has shown, give people free markets and property rights, and you will be astonished by how much they will improve their lot—and ours.

So today…realize God loves you and has created you with a productive purpose, a future and hope.


Source:The Population Bomb Was a Dud – Paul Ehrlich got it wrong because he never understood human potential.ByWilliam McGurnApril 30, 2018. Wall Street Journal

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