Using Facebook for the Glory of God

Facebook is going to be used. By Millions of people. By hundreds of thousands of Christians. Everyday. But, are they doing it for the Glory of God? I have to admit, that I do not always use social media to the glory of God. Too often I use it as a distraction from doing more important things. I have known people who deleted their Facebook profile because it was causing them to either fall into temptation or at the very least, they got tired of being distracted by yet one more thing.

While it is certainly acceptable for someone to do that, I do have to wonder: Have they TRIED to use Facebook to the glory of God? It is a tool just like books are a tool. Just like television is a tool. Just like a microphone is a tool. Colossians 3:17 says, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”  This includes the internet. So, I think it is high time we Christians take serious strides toward putting our use of Facebook under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Continue reading

Facebook Etiquette for Christians

We live in a different world than we did 17 years ago. I say that because most tech historians would agree that 1994 was the year the internet went mainstream. Alongside the internet being mainstream, social media via internet technology also grew. In the early days it was just email and chat rooms (or instant message programs like AIM and ICQ) that lead the way to people being more connected through the internet. Then came the rise of YouTube, MySpace, Google, Wikipedia, Twitter, and of course, Facebook.  Actually, let me just show you a video that explain far better than I how much social media, and specifically Facebook, have influence over Americans. Just take a few minutes to view this informative and entertaining visual histories.

Social media is common place and certainly is here to stay. Yet, anyone who has spent more than a few minutes on any social networking site will see that far, far too often people in general seemingly lose their minds with their behavior. Normal social cues and etiquette and, more importantly, basic moral principles are jettisoned in a New York Minute. Why does this happen? And how should Christians act on Facebook and other user-controlled internet media? How should we react to other Christians acting in a less-than-Christian way on the internet?  These questions need- demand- answers if parents, pastors, and brothers and sisters in Christ are going to keep up with an every-changing cyber world. Continue reading

Religion in Video Games: How God Reveals Himself in Mario and Master Chief (part 3 of 3)

 

Do narrative-driven games reveal the mind of God?

 In one sense, video game developers have done their level-best to avoid God as a topic in narrative-driven games. Consider this article written by Julian Murdoch over at GameSpy. Murdoch admits that even a professional video game journalist, who has no dog in this fight, can’t get developers to talk about why they don’t include God in their games. What little I did uncover strongly suggests what most of us already think: God polarizes, therefore God does not sell. Michael Thompson, who speculated as to the reason why including God as part of a narrative within a game doesn’t sell concluded that no two people have exactly the same view on religion.  This would make it near impossible to figure out how to market a religious game.

In another sense, many games have religious elements to them. Diablo and Dante’s Inferno come to mind. But, very few make any kind of statement that would be worth defending, or they create a religion that serves the narrative of the game and may bear some resemblance to a real-life religion but not enough to be of any significance. So, is it even worth it? Continue reading

Religion in Video Games: How God Reveals Himself in Mario and Master Chief (part 2 of 3)

Humans love tinkering. They love trying to figure things out. As God’s special creation, we are obsessed with puzzles. This is no less true than in the realm of video games.

Pause for a second and reflect on the nature of our universe. Its intricacies boggle the mind. From the way the fabric of time and space are interwoven to the way electrons spin around a nucleus, God certainly does have a knack for making it all fit. Creation is one big puzzle, so it is no surprise that we think in terms of puzzles. Whether you are a toddler trying to figure out how bread fits in a toaster or an engineer focusing all his mental energy on trying to get a circuit board to work, you are always solving puzzles. Continue reading

Religion in Video Games: How God Reveals Himself in Mario and Master Chief (part 1 of 3)

Is it possible for video games to reveal the mind of God?

Even asking that question is arbitrary to most people. After all, doesn’t discovering God mean that you actually have to use your brain? And isn’t playing video games kind of the opposite of using your brain? And it’s easy to get turned off to games as an avenue to discovering God. With violence, sexuality, or the persistent atheism (in this case meaning most games do not even explore the metaphysical) in games from its inception to the present day, why bother asking the question? The answer should be easy: No, they don’t.

Not so fast. Continue reading

Theology of Fun

Theology of Fun should be an oxymoron to most people. Theology is the serious stuff that has to do with God. Fun is, well, fun shouldn’t require thinking, especially thinking about fun.

Yet, I do believe it is important to talk about in American society because one of the biggest sins we Americans LOVE to commit is having too much fun… fun with no self-control.

So, I wanted to get my thoughts on paper on this subject, if anything, to help clarify what I believe so I can articulate it to others. But, also to give any of you readers some food for thought. Continue reading