As I was looking over the plethora of information that passes across my Facebook wall, I was motivated to write this article in order to give some advice to my friends who are followers of Christ. As you use Facebook, please keep the following things in mind.
I. Is Christ the central focus of your Facebook page?
First, open your Facebook page and examine what you have placed there for your friends to see, and maybe even the entire world if your wall is public. What would they say that the central focus of your wall is? Who is the central persona that all will see? They will see all the things that you like and share. You are sending out a message with what you have liked, posted, and shared. Are you the central focus of your Facebook page? Do your political beliefs and your causes stand out above all else? Would people scrolling through your profile be motivated to look to Christ and His kingdom, or to something else? In the Bible, the apostle Paul tells us that the central goal of his life is Christ. This should be the goal of every born again believer who lives, as he goes about his daily life, including his virtual life on Facebook. Our Facebook pages reflect who we are, how we think, what our passions are, and what our interests are. Take a close look at your Facebook page and you will discover if your passions and interests are Christ or something else. As you examine your Facebook profile, take a pen and paper and note what you see. At the end, is Christ and the kingdom of God the central focus of what you demonstrate to the world?
II. Share your personal opinions from a Biblical perspective
Your followers follow you because they are interested in what you think about things in this life, your opinions. Don’t just repost Bible verse and quotes from other believers. As you post Bible verses and other quote, give your opinion on what is there, testifying of your faith in Christ and desire to proclaim His kingdom. For example, if you repost a sermon or an article, explain what you learned from them and why you recommend them to others. This is your opportunity to SHARE Christ with those around you.
III. Do not post or share things that contradict the Gospel
Maybe you were told to read a book at school and you want to let everyone on Facebook know what you are reading. Before you do that, make sure that the book does not contradict the message of the Gospel and place Christ in a bad light. The same can be said about movies, magazines, and anything else that you recommend on Facebook.
IV. Do not act childish on Facebook
Many times, people want to be funny and end up sharing crude messages that end up contradicting their supposed faith in Christ. As people follow your posts, based on what you share, they may come to the conclusion that you are childish or that you live in a perpetual state of “fun” and are not a serious person. What does the Scripture teach about our conduct, the way that we live day to day.
Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity. Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person. (Colossians 4:5-6)
The “outsiders” mentioned here are nonbelievers (not born again Christians). This is the way that nonbelievers act. They are constantly looking for “fun” to distract themselves from the mundane activities of everyday life. What will they think about you if you claim to be a follower of Christ yet seem to live for the same things that they live for? Show yourself as being wise in your conduct by sharing things that will edify and point to Christ. All of your LIKES, SHARES, and POSTS are a message of your true conduct. Your speech, what you share on Facebook, must always be with grace, as seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person, pointing them to Christ and His kingdom.
V. Do not make Facebook your own personal “mirror”
If you have ever been around teenage girls for more than 5 minutes, you know that many of them like to primp in front of the mirror. Many demonstrate the same idea by constantly posting pictures of themselves for everyone to see, including themselves. By definition and title, Facebook promotes narcissism so be very careful with posting everything to point to yourself and how awesome you are. The Scriptures teach us to use our lives to point to Christ and not ourselves. We were created to reflect the glory of God in all that we do. As nonbelievers, we cannot do that so we reflect ourselves. When we come to Christ, we give up the “self” and embrace Christ. That is why Jesus teaches what He does in Matthew 5:16:
“Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
May the Lord help us be a correct reflection of who He is in us by all that we say and do, especially what we post on Facebook and other social networks.
Article by: Vasile Filat
Translated by: Erik Brewer