Of Evangelicals, Bibles and Blogs
“Do you still read your Bible?”
Brothers and Sisters,
Do you? Why would I ask such a question? There are so many influences that impact our daily habits. We can’t and won’t explore all of them in this small space, but there is one that we can touch on today.
For the last decade there has been an explosion of blogs on the net. Their use continues to evolve. Blogs are not simply about the summer trip to the Spam Museum anymore. Blogging is increasingly used as a publishing means for social and religious commentary, shared in relatively brief snippets. Thirty years ago, there was no means for ‘everyman’ to publish their thoughts to a worldwide audience. Not so now. Blogs give a platform to every opinion and viewpoint under the sun.
Certainly this mish-mash of hoi polloi writing has its low points, inane ramblings, and downright nastiness. If you watch where you step and exercise a little discrimination in your reading, you can find hundreds of helpful weblogs. But you already know this. In fact, I’m willing to bet you watch numerous blogs which you find interesting, informative, or challenging.
What does this have to do with reading your Bible? Well… do you? You know… actually read your Bible anymore? Or have Christian blogs taken the place of regular Bible reading in your everyday life?
Oh, I know. It’s not like you deliberately set out to abandon daily, regular, habitual feeding on God’s Word. And after all, you’re spending that time reading Christian blogs that talk about, explore, and apply the Bible; right? I’m sure it was never your intent to let your Bible gather dust. There is so much good information, teaching, instruction, and reflection out there. It’s all so very interesting. But at what cost, dear friends? Are we using wisdom when we pour our lives into endless reading of commentary on the Bible instead of reading the Bible itself and learning directly from the Master?
“Do you still read your Bible?”
Are you convicted by the question? If you are, here are a few suggestions that might help.
We must realize that, while God does call pastors, teachers, and theologians to serve the church, there is no command that we must read everything that every good and godly writer has to say. In fact, it is impossible to do so.
We must realize that blog posts take inordinantly more time to read than we account for. This is akin to the old timewarp phrase resulting in multiple hours spent at your computer, “I just need to check my email.” Yeah, right. Like we just need to throw away a year of our life.
We must realize that the internet and blogs are a relatively recent development and we are not conscious of the invasive and dominating impact they are having on our lives. There has not yet been a broad and intentional development of good and right use of them in everyday life. There are indications that more people are starting to acknowledge these personal challenges raised by the new media.
Pare down your blog ‘watch list’ to a handful. Stop trying to be omniscient or Solomon in the breadth of your knowledge. You can’t be, and you’re not.
Finally, go read your Bible today. Right now.