A provocative headline, to be sure. It might seem like a stretch to some people and there can be good argument to answer in the negative to the headline’s question. But, there may be a biblical case to be made against use of sterile seeds and GMOs.

Now before you dismiss this idea out of hand, take a moment to consider the words below without thinking of the current food system, but simply to digest the ideas based on the text presented. At the very least, the notion is thought provoking.

In Genesis, God’s creative fiat was expressed in several ways. When it comes to flora, Gen. 1:11 is particularly important. In this verse, God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them.”

Now, one could take from Genesis that soil (earth) is vitally important for plant life; and, that plants are to be self replicating (yielding seed). No earth-shattering revelation there. Yet, consider that agribusiness companies are flooding the world marketplace with plants that do not self replicate when exposed to growing conditions. These companies are pushing commodity crops that grow sexually sterile seeds by scientific design. Is this an adulteration of God’s design? Would anyone want to answer to God for use of technology in this way?

However, there is more consensus to say that transgenic manipulations (GMOs) of seed is an adulteration of God’s design. Putting the gene of one species of animal into the gene sequence of a plant cannot be supported as natural or healthful, let alone, part of God’s creative process to feed mankind, nor His command to be creative in our fruitfulness.

One could take this notion even farther. If man changes the seed so that it no longer can express its “seedness” then it could be viewed as contrary to God’s design. Bob Moore, famous founder of Bob’s Red Mill in Oregon, was quoted in the May 2013 issue of Acres U.S.A., saying, “…if you take away the seed’s ability to be a seed, like by taking the germ of the bran away, you have essentially destroyed the value of it.” If you read the whole interview titled “Purposeful Profit,” it’s easy to take Moore’s words to mean that not using the whole grain is a contradiction of God’s plan for feeding mankind.

These ideas are certainly debatable. But, it’s useful to examine God’s design of creation and look carefully how mankind is working in harmony with it and where we are contradicting it … to our own disgrace and demise.

Noah Sanders, in his book Born-Again Dirt, put it this way. He wrote that how we farm or garden should be based on a biblical world view, not a secular one. Every part of our farms and every way we farm should bring glory to God. “If we want to glorify God we must be Christian farmers, not just farmers who are Christians,” Sanders wrote. The differences between these two perspectives are vast, and they started to diverge as far back as the first generation of man.

The damage industrial agriculture does to the soil and the watershed combined with bioengineering of the crops which are overlaid with petroleum-based poisons are certainly not Edenic conditions, and not even those described after Adam was banished from the Garden.

 

Dan Grubbs

Dan Grubbs, editor of Stewardculture, lives in northwest Missouri where he is implementing and managing a permaculture-style design on his 15-acre homestead. A weekly teacher of the Bible, Dan believes that an agrarian lifestyle is one in which he can answer God's calling to steward creation through regenerative techniques that attempt to mimic God's design.

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