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Thoughts About Facebook

Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more signifi cant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. (Phil. 2:3–4)

Facebook, MySpace, blogs, online communities, texting–these are things that were virtually unknown a decade ago1. Today our lives, as well as our children’s lives, are dominated by Internet-enabled communities. Th e use of language has changed as well. Th ere is a cyber vocabulary that is unique to the electronic world. Letter groups such as lol, ttyl, and np, form a modern shorthand that allows for an almost instant transmission of moods, thoughts and plans across cities, states and continents. People write on electronic walls to announce when and what they are eating, what the weather is, and how they feel about it. Amazing! Prior to this new age of cyber community, one would not think of phoning, or even emailing, a friend in another state to announce that they had just put the kids to bed and are now watching the 11 o’clock news. But now, thanks to Facebook, dozens, if not hundreds of folks—many of whom you don’t even know—are aware of these kind of details about your life. And, of course, your children are also likely to be citizens of cyberspace, or they soon will be. Therefore, it is appropriate to ask what biblical principles intersect with 21st century electronic information transfer? You have to admit it is a stretch to think of Paul texting Timothy to bring him the parchments so that he can post them on his blog.