Biblical Facebook & social media etiquette regarding quarreling
It breaks my heart when I see professing Christians quarreling on Facebook. The Bible says that Gods’ angels rejoice when one sinner repents (Luke 15:10.) However, I believe Satan rejoices when Christians quarrel or argue on Facebook.
I’ve even seen a ‘believer’ reply in a Facebook comment, “well it’s my first amendment right, to say as I please.” That may be true, but if you truly are saved; the constitution must never be placed before, or over the Bible. Otherwise, your constitution has become an idol. The following is a ‘Biblical’ principle to apply to social media.
I often see posts on other friends’ Facebook walls that I disagree with, but should I publicly comment in disagreement with you? When you see friends post something that you disagree with, ignore it. Don’t argue! It is a terrible witness. Think of all the non-saved ‘friends’ that are watching us?
I often see others ‘jump in’ on an argument that they were never part of. As it says in Proverbs 26:17, “He that passeth by, and meddleth with strife belonging not to him, is like one that taketh a dog by the ears.”
Proverbs 20:3 says, “It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling.”
Proverbs 15:1 says, “A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.”
Philippians 2:14 says, “Do all things without murmurings and disputings:”
2 Timothy 2:23-26 says, “But avoid foolish and ignorant disputes, knowing that they generate strife. And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth, and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will.”
Folks had Facebook existed 13 years ago, because of ‘unrepented pride,’ I could have never been on Facebook. Remember the centrality of the problem, is almost always the center letter of both words pride and/or sin. It is the ‘I.’ Yes, the problem is ‘ourselves.’ We must be careful not to judge a man’s heart regarding pride. But it often appears on Facebook, that our own pride worships the false deity of me, myself, and I.
Paul warned us in Galatians 5:16-21, “I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another so that you do not do the things that you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
Let us repent from this unbiblical quarreling. Let us be sanctified in this area. Furthermore, if you believe a person must be rebuked, and/or corrected on Facebook; then do so in a private message.
“For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.” 1st John 2:16
We all struggle with pride, but we must all repent. As another once said, “The best way to kill our flesh, is to starve it. Quit feeding our flesh.”
For my post on what the Bible says about Elders quarreling, click here.
For my post on ‘The Apostle Paul’s attitude towards other preachers that he did not agree with,’ click here.
“Whoever speaks the truth gives honest evidence, but a false witness utters deceit. There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Proverbs 12:17-18
Even knowing that every Christian sins, and has fallen short, and will continue to fall sort. The standards for Elders and Pastors are so much higher. As most of you already know, the qualifications to be an Elder or Pastor are defined in Titus 1:5-9, 1 Tim. 3:1-7 & 1 Peter 5:1-4. But these are not just standards to ‘get them into office,’ they are to be revered and obeyed to ‘remain in office.’
But what I am seeing a couple Elders do on Facebook and YouTube is troubling. Unless they repent from their quarreling, they have disqualified themselves from that office. Just verse 3 alone of 1 Timothy 3 is a good place to start. But don’t just look at it, study the Greek. Oh yes, there’s a fine line between being the Jude 3 ‘contender for the faith,’ and the one that comments in a contentious quarrelsome manner. Though it is my personal policy to strive to not argue in comments. I have no doubt that if I were an Elder, the first thing I’d do, is deactivate my Facebook account.
But don’t just look at these words in this verse (1 Tim 3:3), again STUDY the Greek! Then either repent, or step down!
ESV ‘not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.’
KJV ‘not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;’
NASB ‘not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous;’
If you don’t have the proper study resources in your library, you can begin via the below online link.
A side note: Though it’s important to “understand” the Text (WWUTT). But the problem is some denominations add to the Text with their own ‘extra-biblical’ requirements. Let’s keep it Biblical.