The Christian and Technology
If any one thing had to be selected to characterise our time, the rapid advance of technology would have to be high on the list. The touch screen is everywhere: in our pockets, on our desks and inevitably in our homes. Children seem to take to touch screens naturally, accelerating their use in every part of life. All this is not without advantages—rapid communication, easy contact between family members almost anywhere in the world, online shopping made convenient.
But no-one can afford to ignore the danger signs, including the rapid spread of pornography across a wide age range, resulting in the sexualisation of young children. These things are in one sense the tip of the iceberg: there are measurable declines in true literacy and a decreasing ability to take in information that is not on the screen, or that moves away from ‘snippets’ and ‘sound bites’ and quickly accessible videos. And why do major Silicon Valley personalities who are producing these devices limit their use in their own families?
John Fesko tackles the essential question: what is the Christian response to all this? As he says, ‘In the end, we need not flee from technology but we must understand it in order to use it well. One of the primary themes of this book is encouraging us to look past technology and dig into our own hearts. It encourages us to ask whether Christ so fills us that nothing else can drag us away from him.
Many Christian books on the subject of technology are written by those who are either technophiles or technophobes. They often tend to encourage readers to one of two extremes: either uncritical acceptance and use of whatever the latest invention may be, or else an uncritical and fearful attempt to ignore and avoid most technological advances. In his book, J. V. Fesko, provides a more helpful way. He encourages readers toward discernment and biblical wisdom. Recognizing both the benefits and dangers of various technologies, from the automobile to the internet, Fesko calls his readers to a prayerful consideration of the ways every technology impacts Christians both as individuals and as a community. I will be encouraging all of my students to read this profoundly thoughtful book.
Keith A. Mathison, Professor of Systematic Theology, Reformation Bible Colleg
Winston Churchill observed, “We shape our buildings and afterwards our buildings shape us.” The same is true of technology. In six crisp chapters, John Fesko explains how our technological advancements have shaped Christian thinking and behavior, for better and for worse. From screens to social media to automobiles and other technologies, he shows the blessings they offer and also the grave dangers they pose. As a pastor and professor, I will be putting this fine book in the hands of both parishioners and students.”
Charlie Wingard, Associate Professor Pastoral Theology and Dean of Students at Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, MS
J.V.Fesko is Professor of Systematic and Historical Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, Mississippi, USA. He is the author of a number of books and articles and has served as a pastor for more than a decade before becoming a full-time professor. He and his wife, Anneke, and their three children live in the greater Jackson area.J. V. Fesko is Professor of Systematic and Historical Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, Mississippi, USA. He is the author of a number of books and articles and has served as a pastor for more than a decade before becoming a full-time professor. He and his wife, Anneke, and their three children live in the greater Jackson area.