November 23rd, 2010 11:14 EST
Facebook is Not The Enemy
"Facebook made me do it," or so Pastor Cedric Miller seems to think. The Associated Press has reported that the pastor of Living Word Christian Fellowship in Neptune, N.J. has ordered approximately 50 married church leaders within his congregation to delete their Facebook accounts. This edict was issued in response to 20 couples within the church having marital troubles recently after a spouse reconnected with a former "love interest" on Facebook.
But did Facebook really cause these marital woes? As described on the company`s website, "Facebook is a social utility that helps people communicate more efficiently...." According to Ecclesiastes 1:9, "There is nothing new under the sun." This is true. Facebook is merely the latest version of an age-old phenomenon, preceded by the internet, television, automobile, telephone and money. By design, each of these inventions is a medium for exchanging or transferring something -- data, images, sound, inanimate objects, goods or services -- from one place or person to another. They lack the capacity for either good or evil.
Anything used improperly can, and will, cause harm. 1 Timothy 6:10 informs that "the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil." However, Ecclesiastes 10:19 reminds us that "money meets every need." So while money itself neither feeds nor kills a person, it can facilitate either event based upon the underlying motives of the person wielding it.
Likewise, as Pastor Miller proclaims, marital problems have spawned as a result of a spouse using Facebook. And chances are that using Facebook has been a common thread in cases of marital discord in other communities outside Neptune.
On the other hand, there also are examples in which Facebook has been used for good. A September 30 article in the Palm Beach Post features several people whose lives have benefited from having used Facebook. These Facebook beneficiaries include a father and son reuniting after having been separated for almost 40 years, a cancer patient who was able to raise money to offset his medical expenses, and a heart patient who has a better quality of life from foregoing a mechanical aortic valve replacement in lieu of a less conventional procedure. Facebook did not reunite, raise funds or reassign a surgical procedure. Neither did Facebook force infidelity. Ultimately, the social utility made it easier for the users to act upon their underlying motives.
So, should a person flee from sexual immorality as the Bible admonishes? Yes, without question. And if Facebook represents a source of temptation to you in that area, then it is wise for you to forego that medium. However, if using Facebook does not tempt you toward ungodly behavior, sexually or otherwise, then there is no biblically-supported rationale for deleting one`s Facebook account -- or for mandating this action of someone who is not tempted when using this tool.
For the sake of disclosure, I will share that I do not yet have a Facebook account. But I plan to open one in the near future for the sake of promoting my business. My wife already knows my anticipated password. But more important, she knows my commitment to fidelity to her, which preceded my having met her. Facebook is not the enemy; but sin is. Work to delete sin from your life, and your Facebook account will take care of itself.
Henry Matlock is an ordained Christian preacher, healthcare administrator and author of "Daily Deposits for the Soul: The Busy Christian`s Guide to Abundant Living." Go to www.DailyDepositsForTheSoul.com for more information.
To schedule an interview with Henry Matlock, call at 870-489-8613 or DailyDepositsForTheSoul@yahoo.com.
SOURCE: Christian Newswire