But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; (2 Timothy 3:14)
In this day and age, as the internet keeps breaking its boundaries of reach, and many blogs (like my own), many Facebook pages, many WhatsApp posts and OAPs abound everywhere, the spate of the release of opinions have highly soared. Now, anybody, I mean anybody, can say anything, and be heard, listened to and paid attention to by the sons of men. This has led to the increase in all kinds of crazy opinions about life and faith, and has essentially led to attacks to the hearts, minds and the personal faith of some. Sometimes, these posts raise questions in our hearts concerning our faith, our land, our leaders, etc.
Recently, I saw a certain social media personality (abi ‘pastor’) who was laboring to accentuate the fact that there are other ‘scriptures’ other than the Bible. He was trying to accentuate the fact that the Bible is not inerrant, and is incomplete. Hence, to seek the revelation of God, we may need to look to some other books than the canonized scriptures for God’s truth. As I read this article, I wondered and shuddered, not for myself, but for those who may read this article. We have a generation of Christians who are so gullible. They are not in any way committed to the personal knowledge of God, but are busy turning to one social media personality or the other to answer questions on issues of the Christian faith.
Hence, in this article, I intend to give some guidelines on protecting your faith in a world full of social media articles and posts that attack its tenets and doctrines. You must keep the following in mind:
1. Always bear in mind that many social media posts are done by ignorant men. They may sound like they know so much, but they really don’t know anything. Most OAPs delight in being controversial; it drives traffic to them, and make them the center of attention of the internet world. Some of them too, may have had some personal issues with the church one time or the other, and that makes them feel they must be vindictive towards church policies and beliefs.
2. That you do not personally know an answer to a question, does not mean that answers do not exist. For example, over the years, many Christian apologists (like C. S. Lewis, Ravi Zacharias, John Lennox, Os Guinness, etc.) has walked this earth. They have been asked and have had cause to answer a lot of fundamental questions on the Christian faith thrown them by atheists, Muslims, etc. Sometimes, when I see some questions and arguments thrown by many people, I simply laugh because nothing is new under the sun. These questions have been asked over and over again, and have been sufficiently answered. Just that men insist on sitting on their own philosophies. For example, what the person who was challenging the inerrancy of the Bible did not know was that these issues have been raised and sufficiently answered. The Bible suffices for all a man needs to survive and win in life’s battles. You do not need to go outside the Bible to find your way through God’s word. These questions have been asked and answered.
You must not have answers to every questions of life.
3. In the face of contrary opinions from a blog post, stick with the truth you have known, until you have sufficient evidence from the Bible to believe otherwise. If you trust the integrity, faith and sincerity of those who are your pastors and teachers (and I don’t know what good you are doing yourself staying in a church where you do not trust your preachers), then hold on to their doctrines. Paul assured Timothy that a man can hold on to the things he has learnt of and are assured of, simply on account of his knowledge and trust of those who taught him. The words of a man whose life you have followed closely and has observed the genuineness of his faith and hos life, should not be matched person-to-person with a mere blogger or OAP whose personal secret life you do not even have an inkling on.
4. On a final note, every true Christian is encouraged to get involved with God’s word. It is not enough to come to social media and read posts and articles. Go back to God’s word. Like the Berea Christians, search it daily, to see if what you are being taught is true. That will help you to stay in the truth and protect your faith from erroneous posts and articles being paraded on social media. Also, watch out for those who take pleasure in deriding the church of Jesus, and do nothing to build it up. Take note of those who want to water done the integrity of the Bible and make it look like an ordinary book. No matter how innocent and sincere they look, they do not have the spirit of Jesus. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23). Anyone whose social media posts and presence does not reflect this, is not operating with the Spirit of Jesus.
So, be careful, protect your faith, and let nothing, no one, rob you of your faith, your love for the brethren and the church of God, and your confidence in the authority of God’s word.