Technology is amazing isn’t it? I mean who would have ever thought that we would one day be able to open on the Bible and read it on iPhones, iPads, and Android devices. However, with any gift there are some potential dangers…
If we are not careful the convince of ready availability of the Bible can cheapen the preciousness of the Bible. In an age where the Bible app stands next to the Facebook app we must be very careful not to demise the worthiness of the Bible in the eyes of our culture. For example, many church members have stopped bringing paper Bibles to church on Sunday Worship. The will prioritize bringing a smartphone or an iPad, but don’t bother carrying a Bible. Carrying a Bible communicates to others the preciousness of that which you are carrying. It communicates to others that this book is significant enough and valuable enough that it is worth the extra trouble of carrying the extra weight with me. It also makes a distinction between the Word of God, and whatever else you have on your device. This is why I personally have made the decision to always bring a paper Bible with me to the pulpit. I’ll sometimes use my iPad for notes, but I always make sure I have a Bible with me, because it communicates to the congregation the preciousness of the words of Scripture.
Part of this concern is a very practical one as well. Smartphone Bibles can be very distracting. You can be reading Isaiah then get a text message or an email and your focus is no longer on the Bible but on your inbox. In the day of so many technological distractions, we must not let the scriptures take the backseat to the twitter app.
No don’t get me wrong. bible apps can be very helpful. For example, when your sitting in the doctor’s office waiting for the doctor you have the Bible right there on your phone. Take those extra minutes washing your mind in the Word rather than people magazine. They can also be convenient for evangelism, and even for Bible Study. Some of the Bible Study tools available in the digital age are absolutely astounding. My favorite is Logos. I use the iPad app all the time. With it I can quickly pull up the Greek or Hebrew Text and do a word study on the go. The technology of this age is a gift from God, but we must never let the gift of technology become our God.
We must always keep a healthy balance, and think through the implications of everything we do. God’s Word is precious and the way we handle the text physically should communicate that to others.