The Christian and Facebook

Some statistics:

  • • 54% of teens between the ages of 13 and 14 have a Facebook account.
  • On average, teens between the ages of 15 and 17 spend 20 hours a week on Facebook.
  • From April 2008 to April 2009, total minutes spent on Facebook increased from 1.7 billion minutes to 13.9 billion minutes–an increase of 700 percent.
  • The New York Times (Dec. 20, 2009) reported that the 350 million members of Facebook spend a total of 10 billion minutes on Facebook every day.
  1. Is it a sin to use Facebook or other social networking sites on the internet?
  2. What principles must govern our use of social networking? (1 Peter 1:13-16I Corinthians 10:312 Corinthians 5:17).
  3. Discuss some of the moral issues that we confront when using social networking.
    1. To what degree should your parents supervise your account?
    2. What do your profile and your profile picture say about you?
    3. Why would you put your favorite music, books, movies on your profile page?
    4. Who are your “friends”? Do these people encourage you in your Christian walk?
    5. When you click the “like” button, are you approving of something sinful?
    6. Are you so busy with Facebook that you procrastinate with your chores, schoolwork, bedtime, devotions, and other things?
    7. Are you careful not to post gossip or unkind comments?
    8. Before posting information, do you stop, think, and judge whether it is appropriate?
    9. Are you willing to take a stand against the slander/backbiting of others, or point out to them that what they just did or said was wrong?
    10. The book of Proverbs often warns against sloth. Does how much time we spend on Facebook indicate that we are lazy?
    11. Social networking can be habitual and addictive. If you went on vacation and had no access to Facebook for a while, would this bother you? Upon returning home, do you feel you must check Facebook before doing anything else?
  4. Discuss some of the implications for our future, and for others, of what we post on Facebook.
    1. Could the things you post on Facebook be considered public?
    2. Could your civil government charge you with crimes for what you wrote?
    3. Could your consistory require a public confession from you for what you wrote?
    4. Could a future employer preview your page before hiring you?
    5. Let’s say someone was interested in joining your church. They became your friend on Facebook and saw that you enjoy movies, sinful music, and partying. Would it bother you if, for that reason, they decided that your church isn’t for them?
  5. Discuss some positive, godly uses of Facebook.