In the most recent issue of the Christian Renewal, there is an article on Facebook. The article is "The Facebook Phenomenon: Is that really you in cyberspace?" and it graces the front page.
The article is nothing short of a disgrace. The author clearly has no technical background and is almost totally unfamiliar with any theory of online community growth and development. The author doesn't even appear to have a basic understanding of human communities in a general sense. Peppered with "Christianese," it pretends to seriously discuss the perceived problems of Facebook. Instead, all it does is reinforce technophobia >snip< using phrases like "religion of technology... adherents to this religion" and so on.
At some point, I plan to write a rebuttal. I may even write a whole series of articles dealing with technology and its proper use in the church. >snip< Spiritually well-grounded Christians should not be afraid of something that can be a very effective tool for spreading the Gospel.
And that's ALL it is.
A tool!

Edits made on July 21, 2007


Shane said...

So, are YOU on facebook? ;-)

Hannah said...

Personally, I LOVE facebook. I have reconnected with quite a few old friends, and one or two REALLY old friends that I never thought I'd see again.

One friend in particular, I am going to have to tell you about the next time we chat. I think you'll be as excited as I was to find her. ;)

Anonymous said...

Has anyone thought that maybe they all have it wrong? Just because a person is a Christian does not mean that he even believes his Bible.

Case in point. It has been pre concluded by most Christians that the earth was made in 6 ''calander'' days. When we look at the bible however , the sun moon and stars were not created til day 4. So , what orbit was used to constitute a 24 hour cycle. The first 3 days where represented by darkness , or absence of God , to "light" , the Spirit of God moving upon the face of the waters. So God defines the day as the evening , and the morning.The problem comes when we limit a day as only a 24 hour cycle , and when we limit creation , ( physical , and spiritual) in it's entirety to a limited time frame.

Case in point .

In Jeremiah

4 23: I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.
24: I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly.
25: I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled.
26: I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness,and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, and by his fierce anger.
27: For thus hath the LORD said, The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end.
28: For this shall the earth mourn, and the heavens above be black: because I have spoken it, I have purposed it, and will not repent, neither will I turn back from it.

This passage shows clearly that prior beings resided on the earth, and that God rendered a judgement on that world.

Paul ascribes creation to both phyical ,and spiritual.

Colossians 1:16

For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:
17: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.

Lucifer and his Angels had already fallen , and expelled from where ? wasn't it from heaven or Gods domaine? This wasw created long before the recreation of a fallen world.

We see in Jeremiah that there was no man , but there where cities that God made desolate , and that the birds of the heavens where fled before man was ever created .

Hebrews 1:1: God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
2: Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

Did anyone notice that worlds is in the plural?

This has all come down the the limited definitions that man has imposed on the use of any given word in the Bible , weather we are talking about a day as constrained to only applying to a 24 hour cycle , or creation , as only referring to physical creation.

If you notice Gods choice of words when he speaks in the past tense referring to , "God created the heavens and the earth".
In the past tense again when he states that " the earth was without form and void " , and in the past tense again when he says " and darkness was upon the face of the deep.

It is evident that God is not the babbler , man has tampered with the language intended to explain what actually transpired , and then man went and published a perverted version of creation.

The Church now has to redefine a lie they have defended by interjecting more lies to their theory instead of believing Gods word.

Prov:23:9: Speak not in the ears of a fool: for he will despise the wisdom of thy words.

Prov:23:16: Yea, my reins shall rejoice, when thy lips speak right things.

Timothy Coderre

Scott Merrithew said...

I agree with you Ruth; there is a bit of phobia about some of the modern technologies, and I think the church should see them as tools that can be used for the church's purposes too.
At the same time though, it is not difficult to understand the concerns about Facebook, chatrooms, and the internet in general. It would be dishonest for us to not acknowledge the inherent dangers also, such as exposure to identity theft, luring naive children in chatrooms, ready availability of pornography, etc. There seem to be new uses and misuses of technology appearing every week.
While society increasingly holds that rights and freedoms trump responsibities and civility, the unfortunate result is that children are exposed to the ugliest and darkest qualities of the human character far earlier than in any previous generation. Even parents who want to try, can barely keep up street-proofing sons and daughters against strangers on the street, let alone strangers on the internet pretending to be friends.

My primary point is that while I would encourage the Christian Renewal people, and christians in general, to properly assess Facebook and other technologies, and find good uses for them, I suggest we who are more worldy wise also properly assess these technologies, and recognize that there is always potential for abuse.
Furthermore, it is the tech-savvy who are in the best position to develop ways to moderate or otherwise govern the cyber-forum. Don't believe for a moment that all cyber-geeks are libertarian anarchists. They just get the most press as hackers and virus generators.
Those who are not, develop firewalls, spam filters, website filters, and other ways to push back the darkness.

As always, the truth lies in the middle between the two extremes.

Scott Merrithew

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