Posted March 11th, 2009 by E. Goodman
Why do I need God’s word on my heart if I’ve got it on my iPhone?
I often hear pastors lament the fall in Biblical literacy among believers today. People just don’t know their Bibles anymore. Supposedly mature Christians don’t know who built the Ark or that the Children of Israel were not actually all children.
The ignorance may be due, in large part, to the fact that we have technology designed to do our remembering for us, making it easier and easier to not know the information we depend on every day. The internet connection in my pocket means that I don’t need to memorize a recipe, driving directions, or order confirmation numbers. I don’t even know anyone’s phone number anymore. Appointments, birthdays, and reservations all live in my phone and computer, quietly waiting until it’s time to remind me of their pending arrival. The infinite capacity of the interwebs leaves more and more free space on my biological “hard drive.”
Access to digital copies of the Bible should change the way we interact with scripture. For instance, we don’t need to lug around Life Application Study Bibles anymore. (Good riddance highlighters and gold script name embossing!) We don’t need to settle on one perspective for study notes or even a single translation or language anymore. These days, our Bibles hyperlink to commentaries, maps, satellite images, and dramatic reenactment video clips. Metadata tagging make chapter and verse numbers obsolete. Sharing scripture is no longer an expensive (and heavy!) endeavor; now it’s just an upload/download away.
So do YouVersion and Bible Gateway mean I don’t need to know scripture? No. The Word is more than just information- it is “the power of God unto salvation.” That power is applied to my life- not when I download scripture to my Kindle, but when I hide it in my heart. We need to have the Word in our minds and on the tips of our tongues for it to powerfully affect every aspect of our lives. Temptation doesn’t wait for Bible Gateway to load. We need to have access to that foundation of Truth even (especially!) when our batteries are dead.
Tags: Bible, digital media
Filed under:Bible, Internet