Technology is not sinful. It itself has no inherent issues compared to scripture. What we do with technology can become problematic. What first comes to mind when I think about technology is social media. I myself am on social media (Instagram). Instagram has given me the ability to stay connected into others’ lives that I don’t get to see daily. Instagram has also given me the ability to stray away from God. The thought that the Bible can help us understand what to do with social media can seem far-fetched, but His word is true for every age. The Bible does not specifically speak on the topic of social media. We don’t see the 11th commandment “thou shalt not take a selfie”. But the Bible does bring up a few questions that parents can consider and bring up in conversation with their kids.
The first question to consider is: will this be edifying? To honestly answer this question, we must understand what edifying means. Edifying is to build up. We must ask if this this builds others up? The answer is typically no. In 1 Corinthians 10:23-24 it says, “‘I have the right to do anything,’ you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything’—but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others.” This verse applies to more then just social media. It applies to every aspect of our lives. I’m not saying the God doesn’t want us to have fun and enjoy what we have on earth. That not the case. So often we (as Christians) ask where the line is. And this verse shows that we are in the wrong thinking. We shouldn’t be trying to creep towards sin but towards Christ and his perfection. When we ask the question will this be edifying? We are putting what we are doing in an eternal perspective. Will social media help us build each other up or will it distract us?
The second question is: does it pass the “test”? This test can be found in Philippians 4:8 which says, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” When we look at this test it can be used for any part of life. Social media is no exception. Is social media lovely, admirable, true, noble, right, or pure? Not in all cases. This verse tells us to think or set your minds upon these things. If social media is keeping you distant or distracted from God, then a heart check needs to be in place.
Don’t take these questions as a focus that every single person should get rid of social media. Like I stated before, God wants us to enjoy stuff on earth. These questions help us put our priorities in check. Social media can be used to further the Gospel but often is used to boost our pride or to tear ourselves/others down. Christ commanded us to be heavenly focused. He commands us to go and make disciples who make disciples (Matt 28:16-20). He does not command us to have a ton of Instagram followers. These questions are something you might not directly say but can ask your kids. It may be awkward at first, but it is beneficial to train kids in the Word and help them stay eternity focused.
We will continue our focus on technology and our kids in our next blog post. Stay tuned!
Tricia Deisch, Principal