In his post dated November 10, 2010, entitled Social Media and Digital Discernment, Pastor John MacArthur addresses some issues that you will agree affect all of our lives, and he makes some suggestions for how a Christian should look at them. I strongly urge you to click on the link above and read the whole article. Following are quotes from this thoughtful, thought-provoking, (but lengthy) article–please don’t let the length deter you–this is one thing you will not regret taking time for, after you have read it. I urge you to read it and then pass it on.
“Gervase Markham, a Mozilla Foundation programmer quoted inThe Sydney Morning Herald, echoes that same concern: ‘Social networking encourages people to have a greater number of much shallower friendships. I know what 15 of my friends had for breakfast, but I don’t know whether any of them is struggling with major life issues. If this trend continues, people in 2020 will have hundreds of acquaintances, but very few friends.’5″
“Moreover, it often distracts people from existing relationships. Instead of pouring themselves into the real-life friendships they currently have, people now spend hours with pseudo-friends online. This is especially seen within the family, where social networking constantly threatens to invade, bringing a barrage of cultural influence into the private world of family life. In the home, focused training in godliness is essential for the development of spiritually-healthy relationships and biblical worldviews. But instant distraction is only a text message away.“
“In 1 Corinthians 10:23–24, Paul explains an important principle about Christian liberty. He writes, ‘All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify. Let no one seek his own good, but that of his neighbor.’ If we apply that truth to the world of social media, we can quickly separate that which is valuable from that which is merely wood, hay, and stubble. Tweeting about the inane details of life might not be sinful, but if it doesn’t build others up spiritually, it might be better left unsaid.“
“As believers, the command of Ephesians 5:15–16 is just as binding upon our modern lives as it was in the non-technological world of the first century. ‘Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.’ Paul’s exhortation has massive implications for how we interact with social media. One day we will stand before Christ to give an account for how we used His resources (including our time and energy). With that in mind, how much of this life can be justifiably devoted to Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and the like? Just a few hours each day, over the course of a lifetime, adds up to years of wasted opportunity.”
“Even the majority of social media users admit that self-promotion is at its core: ‘A national study fresh out of SDSU is confirming that Generation Y really is Generation Me. The jaw-dropping conclusion? 57% of young people believe their generation uses social networking sites for self-promotion, narcissism and attention seeking.’22 In the words of one British journalist: ‘The Me-Man is everywhere. And so is the Me-Woman. They are the millions of men and women . . . from every class, age and profession who want to talk about themselves, expose themselves, and promote themselves in glorious and often gory detail. . . . They blog and bleat and tweet and text you all the time. The medium may vary, but the message is always the same: Me. ‘Me, Me, Me!’”23″
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