Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Should I Be E-fishing?

Thanks for landing on ..finding your way to my blog for some random e-musings that are meant to encourage and edify you! Why do I blog? I want to challenge Christians to follow Christ (not me) better, bringing others with them using whatever efficient tools they have at their disposal. Perhaps you tweet (BTW: that's my twitter.com handle if you want to follow, or maybe you want to become a fan of evangelism at my new page)?

Most people in the world do not know it yet.. but please go ahead and tell me why social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Linkedin and even email or blogs exist.. temporarily. Yes, please do. I want everyone to know why. I also wanna hear your perspective on it.

And I use the word "temporarily" here, because of course, one day soon the Lion of the tribe of Judah will roll up the heavens like an old garment and blow out the brightness of the sun like a flickering candle.. we each will be in one of two places.. Heaven or hell.. and all these tools of communication we like so much will no longer be needed at all. We have social networks to use for a while.

OK, here is why these tools exist…

Paul said, "Christ is the one through whom God created everything in heaven and earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can't see—kings, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities. Everything has been created through Him and for Him" (Col. 1:16 nlt).

So should we use these tools for ourselves? You know the answer! No.

Should some Christians use such mediums. Yes.. I say some, but not all ..and God will show them what to say. We that do.. need to use these tools for Jesus ..in Him as He leads us in getting the truth out!

God said, "For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea" (Hab. 2:14). Just think about how the Gospel Message and the Word of God will go out far and wide in these last days! That is a whole lot of covering isn't it.. like an ocean. There are indeed people groups who are still unreached and have no computers, TVs, or cell phones ..or radios today. But so many open-unbelievers can hear the Message from missinaries, pastors, lay ministers etc.. the hearers can repent (totally turning away from all sin.. a must) and can trust in Jesus Christ today (that takes saving faith, another must)! And then we all have a part to play in reaching our friends!

It's so exciting!

I believe the Church needs to use every possible tool that we can ..minus sinning.. and do this for Him alone, allowing Him to lead in this and get the glory.

Some Christians who want to impose their own personal convictions of holiness upon others (who might personally lack a certain conviction and liberty to go ahead and use these tools for say.. evangelism and for discipleship) tell us how we must avoid all this worldly internet stuff, "because you know.. the anti Christ will soon use the web to ensnare and gain control over us all."

And others have truthfully said that these types of media tend to shrink the soul's capacity for greatness, yes, to keep us from thinking deeply about truth ..and to make us become "second-handers" so to speak. You know what I mean, those who comment on life when they have no experience of their own to say anything really, because they have not gotten up to go live life yet.. those who vicariously try to live their lives and gain pleasure through viewing other's good or wicked pleasures. Have you ever met people who need to "get a life" because they live through others good and evil experiences ..yes, as those they watch are actually out doing something. Ever seen those who want the senual feelings minus all the culpability, by living through say the lives of TV soap opera actors and movie celebrities who are out partying or just living wild off the chain (and again, not all "wild" is bad.. some of the prophets of old were very wild but in a good way).

Perhaps you are this type of couch potato who often comforts yourself by repeatedly saying to yourself, "Hey, I'm not the one sinning inthat show. They are the ones and I am merely sitting here enjoying seeing it all play out. I watch it happen. What's wrong with merely gazing at all the eye-candy?" Hey gang, here's the bottomline: taking pleasure in and relishing in seeing perverts sin... that's also wrong!

But these types of social media that are available ..can indeed be dangerous and we should be aware of this.. especially with so many predators out there lurking and waiting for some naive fool to come along and share too much personal info (Be cautious!).

Social media can also weaken discursive reasoning (discursive reasoning a.k.a. cogitation ..it deals with the formation of chains of inference), these types of media can become bad for you because they can lure you away from valuable devotional time in the Bible and in prayer. We all need to be studying and wisely applying the Scriptures as God wants you to in order to grow. The social media options can disembody vital relationships during a time when we Christians need to get together for koinonia fellowship more. Social media involvement can cater to that inordinate and pervasive craving so many have for gobs of attention, it can sow to the fires of intense narcissism in people.. yes, in a world-that's-to-be-all-about-me! They can take you away from quality family time, from friends, relatives and learning. It can just fill up the world with more worthless time wasting drivel—the counsel of the ungodly (see Ps. 1). We already have way too much of that!

I say beware of the things that can distract you from you first love relationship.. but if you by chance and God's directives are called to get involved with social media, then do make wise efforts to saturate a media world out there with accurate thoughts about the Lord, His love, His eternal plan.. and the truth of the Scripture ..and yes, of the glory of our risen Christ ..and the radical joy of the Gospel!

Block all the pervs who insist upon pushing their trash (don't let them be clever for a minute to lure you in for bucks), and maybe witness to them if you can do this without compromising or becoming soiled inside. We are in the world but don't need the world in us! Maybe God would have you Tweet to inform other people in 140 characters about what you are "for" and about the insanity of sin with its harsh consequences. Remember that people in the world these days tend to know more about what we Christians are against than what we are for. Why be a sourpuss? Why see yourself as.. and act as their cold-hearted policeman who is ready to enforce all the laws and to condemn them when you don't even wear a badge?

Instead be a passionate, on-fire witness who genuinely cares for other people.. living the life clean and pure.. and then go tell them even using Fios with fitting Bible links and good Christian music links, or sound Christian article-links that clearly explain the 24/7/365 radical nature of this committed Christian life in the Spirit! Many on the web are there to get, but you can be there to give, to feed, to challange, to provoke, to comfort ..to add value to people's lives as God wants you to!

They say, if you want to reach fish these days, you might need to get in the tank! Paul entered his culture minus compromise. And with God being your Helper like He was for Paul, you too can minister to people at the point of their greatest need. The Apostle Paul said, "What is my reward then? That when I preach the Gospel, I may present the Gospel of Christ without charge, that I may not abuse my authority in the Gospel. For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win the more; and to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, that I might win those who are under the law; to those who are without law, as without law (not being without law toward God, but under law toward Christ), that I might win those who are without law; to the weak I became as weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some" (1 Cor. 9:18-22).

Wanna build a bridge and make friends for Christ? Are you a Christian surfer, then respectfully visit the northshore and learn to surf excellent. Pray, ask questions, take the time to listen and learn. Open your mouth when the time is right. Are you a geek or a Christian nerd? Then program with a purpose--be the best that you can be without taking lame shortcuts that would undercut quality! Why don't you just pray about all this some, Christian. God might just use you in ways that haven't even entered your thinking yet. I pray He does show you His Way and use you where you are!

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