The Brave New World of New Media

2010 Ligonier Conference

In this 21 minute introductory session from the 2010 Ligonier National Conference, Ed Stetzer, pastor, professor and the President of Lifeway Research, discusses the pervasive cultural presence of social media. This internet phenomenon is not going away, and, while it offers potential dangers, Christians have an opportunity to use it for the good of the gospel.

When we look at tools like Facebook or Twitter, we need to ask how we can approach these things discerningly, biblically and missiologically.

What is the size of your social media engagement? List the different sites (Like Facebook, Linkdin or Twitter) for which you have an account. List the blogs that you regularly read and whether or not you take part in the comments conversation.
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Having done that, assess your behavior on each. Do you treat these discerningly, biblically and missiologically?
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On those which you answered no, how will you change your approach to be more discerning, biblical and missiological?
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The positive potential of social media
  • It can assist in building community
  • It can assist in communication
  • It can assist in inspiration
  • It can assist in introductions

What are some ways that you or your home church has taken advantage of these positive potentials for social media in ministry?
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The dangers of social media
  • It's often the wrong people who engage in social media discussions
  • It can trivialize important things
  • It creates false community
  • It can create pride
  • It promotes impertinent speech

Where have you witnessed some of these same negative dangers as you have engaged with social media? What damage did they do?
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With which of these dangers do you need to be most cautious about your own behavior?
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Ed made the observation that social media sites are not interested in connecting you, but monetizing you. How does this reshape or grow the way you think about the sites with which you are involved?
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Like all things, social media has great potential for good if it is redeemed by the Lord. Our role, then, is to engage these things with godly discernment, working to use biblical truth for a missional purpose.

For more resources from Ligonier Ministries, or to plan a visit to an upcoming conference, visit their website