Using Technology in a Christian Way

In his Epistle to Timothy, St. Paul says, "Let no one have contempt for your youth, but set an example for those who believe, in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity."[1]  Our actions, words, and lifestyle are all essential parts of living the true Christian life.  The power of all these digital devices provides us with an almost unprecedented opportunity to follow St. Paul's words. 

Our use of technology should be consistent with our Christian faith.  Our digital communications and the content we create and share should all be positive examples to others.  That isn't always the case.  Sometimes, we may use the gift of technology—accidentally or on purpose—in inappropriate ways.  As Christians, we need a guideline to help us determine if our intended actions are consistent with or run contrary to our faith. 

Of course, thinking about technology in this way might seem a bit strange.  We live, after all, in the nation of "why not?"  We love the new and get excited about the many things that we stand to gain with each new gadget. Rarely do we stop to consider whether or not we really need to check out that new web site or buy that new device. After all, "why not"?

Before engaging in any online behavior, we would do well to change our perspective by considering several questions: 

1)  Why am I engaging in this activity?  Is it spiritually beneficial to me or another person?

2)  Will my activities directly or indirectly hurt, harm, or embarrass another person?

3)  Would Christ approve of my actions or activities? 

If we cannot answer even one of these questions appropriately then we shouldn't engage in that activity or behavior.  As St. Paul said, we should set an example for others.  Therefore, let's prayerfully reflect on the power and capabilities gifted to us through these new technologies.  May we always use those capabilities with wisdom and discernment for God's glory.

[1] 1 Timothy 4:12