“A man’s wisdom makes his face shine” (Ecc. 8:1).
What about the example you set before others on the internet? Does your Christian light shine on Facebook? Do you use wisdom about what you post or share?
There is no question that this avenue of communication is used for good. Family, friends, and church members stay in touch. We learn about good works and good news in other congregations. We hear about needs and tragedies that cause us to pray more. We enjoy clean humor and read encouraging words. This modern marvel is even used to teach the Bible. While it can never replace face-to-face conversation, social media allow Christians to influence others for the Lord.
Any form of communication can be abused. Anywhere people gather there will be good and bad. We expect the world to talk about bad things, but it is awful when Christians act like the world.
Sometimes Christians post things on Facebook they shouldn’t:
*Bad language. There is no excuse for this. The Bible says, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth” (Eph. 4:29). It doesn’t matter if the story is funny. It doesn’t matter if the statement makes a good point about politics and the condition of our country. There is a right and wrong way to talk about things. You should never attach your name to cussing and profanity.
*Indecent photos. Some Christians who would not dream of being seen in underwear go out in public in what amounts to the same thing. They call them swimsuits or beachwear, but they cover about as much as underwear. “But that’s different” they say. Then can someone please explain the difference without sounding ridiculous? When Adam and Eve made aprons of fig leaves, they were still “naked.” They had on some clothes but not enough (Gen. 3:7-10). The same applies to tops that show cleavage and short skirts. If Christians don’t keep their bodies covered, how are they any different from the world (Isa. 47:1-3; Rom. 12:1-2)?
*Unscriptural talk. There are all kinds of sayings circulating on the internet that might sound good on the surface but are not biblical. Someone will post a statement that says we are to love people, not judge them. But that depends on what kind of judging is under consideration. If a person is talking about hypocritical judging—condemning others while doing worse—then that is what Jesus meant when He said, “Judge not” (Matt. 7:1). But often people mean we should not tell homosexuals, Muslims, or atheists they are wrong because that is judging. These statements are false. We are commanded to “judge righteous judgment” (John 7:24), and it is our duty to reprove sin (Eph. 5:11). Christians need to consider what they are saying and whom they are quoting.
There may be Christians who don’t “like” this article, but it is time that someone said these things. We could add to this list things like gossiping and childish complaining. Facebook is a public arena. Let your light shine. People are watching. More importantly, God is watching.
—Kerry Duke, Vice-President of Academics & Academic Affairs B.A., M.A., Ph.D., Tennessee Bible College