This entry is not intended to be a gossip or divisive entry, let me first make that perfectly clear. The purpose of writing this is in response to comments made during a service I attended at the church I am on staff at. During the service, a comment was made by a guest preacher that Christian blogging is the newest form of gossip and backbiting, and that it is something that Christians should avoid. I heard some of our students respond to that, and knowing that I try to regularly post blog entries, felt burdened to respond to that statement. This entry is public, but it is directed to those in attendance that night, and for those in the Broadmoor family.
I had to examine what was said for what it was worth in the context. There are many different kinds of blogs online. Some are silly, some are serious, and any mix in the middle. When it comes to blogging done by Christians, there are devotional blogs, commentaries, distribution of information, insight from Bible study, and sadly there are also blogs which are used to destroy churches and pastors. The last kind is what I will address first.
I treat blog entries that are divisive and disruptive and slanderous the same way I treat the dreaded "anonymous letter." I discard them and do not even give them a passing glance. Anyone who is not adult enough to sign their name to something they have written, or who pass it on in an email, is not worth the time or stress to worry about what they have spoken. They have chosen the coward's way, and I will not even give what they have to say any attention. The same goes for blogs whose purpose and content is to slander a church, a pastor, or to spread rumors and gossip. Matthew 18 at NO point ever allows for any such foolishness or cowardice to be employed within the church. There is a church here in Memphis that has been rocked and disrupted by unruly members among the congregation who have used the anonymity and comfort of the Internet to slander and divide the church. What they are saying may be true, but regardless of that I consider these people to be unregenerate and they should be brought up for church discipline and publicly called to answer for their sin. The same goes for ANYONE who uses their blog to divide the Church of Jesus Christ or to attack His appointed leadership in the congregation. Matthew 18 declares that you are to go to the person who has wronged you or the believer in error, not to attack them from behind on the Internet. I am sickened by what I see online from people who call themselves Christians, and I would dare to say that this is conduct unbecoming of a born-again believer. If you are reading this and involved in such a blog, stop immediately, repent, and apologize to those whom you have slandered. Restoration is the goal of confrontation, not ruining reputation and character assassination.
With that said, I give a hearty "amen" to those who say that this type of blogging has no place within the Church. I cannot however, say that in all forms all blogging is divisive and disruptive. Many times, blogs are used to share great Truths, and as a way of communicating en mass to people. Some great blogs are out there, and I subscribe to many of them. It is a blessing and encouragement to read what great Christian thinkers and leaders have to say about the issues that we face in an increasingly post-Christian society, and how we as Gospel ministers and Christians must respond to these new challenges. The speed at which information travels now is amazing, and the power of the Internet to be used for good is amazing. We are able to receive information and news as soon as it happens, instead of hours or days later! Praise the Lord for His grace in giving us this amazing technology. We ought be good stewards of it, and not abuse it for personal gain or selfish ambition.
As Christians, we have the delicate and serious task of carrying the Gospel to all people in the world, by our word and action. Let us not slander the name of Christ and His Gospel by resorting to childish and cowardly tactics. Let us as Christians stand above the crowd, and let us use this awesome treasure to His Glory and Renown in all the world.