The Christian Leader in the Digital Age

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dmicah's picture

And Mohler claims to be a thought leader? With this anachronistic puff piece?

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

Dmicah, I'm missing something. Why is it "anachronistic?" How is it a puff piece? He seems to be targeting the older generation of leaders. My pastor is mid-60s and never uses a computer. He writes his sermon notes out on legal pads, and his wife handles the church website and passes along any email that comes to him. At least he gets the importance of the internet (he is spearheading our effort to move Christian literature to Vietnamese pastors via the web), but he still dislikes having people use electronic Bibles in church. He is ahead of the curve of many in his generation as far as vision, and those are the people Mohler is trying to reach.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

Chip Van Emmerik wrote:

At least he gets the importance of the internet (he is spearheading our effort to move Christian literature to Vietnamese pastors via the web), but he still dislikes having people use electronic Bibles in church. He is ahead of the curve of many in his generation as far as vision, and those are the people Mohler is trying to reach.


Yes, this is exactly the type of person that Mohler is trying to reach. E-bibles have been around a long time (my mom had a purpose-built Franklin e-bible in the early 2000's that she was using, and I'm sure she wasn't the first), but since the smartphone revolution was over 6 years ago now, it shouldn't seem that odd to anyone to see e-Bibles on phones, tablets, etc. My wife not only uses her tablet as the scriptures but she takes notes on it as well. Pastors should be happy that people are listening and interacting with what is being taught. I don't take notes, but I will look up words in Strong's, look at maps (if it's that kind of a message), look up scripture cross-references, especially for prophetic passages, look up a verse by phrase, etc. Our ability to "search the scriptures" has never been better.

I understand the argument that people can be misusing the technology, texting, etc., but even when I was a kid, it wasn't that uncommon to see bored individuals (usually teens) having something else to read inside their Bibles so it looked like they were following along, or doodling instead of actually taking notes.

And Mohler's bigger point is a good one -- you hear many older people say that connected individuals are leaving behind the "real" world. Though not the same as face-to-face, of course, with texting and similar tech I'm staying in touch with more individuals in my life than was ever possible before. Those that still think in terms of the e-frontier not being "real" (even if it is qualtitatively different) need a change in their thinking.

Dave Barnhart

Phil Siefkes's picture

It would help to remember that this piece by Dr. Mohler appears to be from chapter 21 of his book The Conviction to Lead published by Bethany House (way back in 2012).  Would it be different if written today?  Not sure.  But I do know this: 2 years in digital/electronic years is a long time.  Thus, perhaps he is not so anachronistic after all. Wink

Discipling God's image-bearers to the glory of God.

dmicah's picture

Dmicah, I'm missing something. Why is it "anachronistic?" How is it a puff piece? He seems to be targeting the older generation of leaders.

I disagree that he is targeting older leaders. He (assuming he wrote this and not a hired hand) didn't indicate a target other than "leader." If I missed something, please point me to that. It could resonate with older leaders, but I've found that a lot of older pastors already embrace technology as much as possible.

It's anachronistic because everything he mentioned is old news. We've been in the mobile digital age for a decade. We've been inundated with social media for almost the same time (Facebook's been open to the public for 7.5 years.)

I say it's a puff piece because it says almost nothing that hasn't been said a thousand times prior. In other words, it's being written because something needed to be posted, not because the message is fresh and vital. It's a blog filler.

I apologize that my first comment may have came across brusque and overly critical. It was meant to be more tongue in cheek/sarcastic.