I am all for technology. As a whole, technology has furthered the advancement of humanity more than any other invention. We now have the ability to receive new information in a matter of seconds all at our fingertips. While the printing press was an awesome invention, it comes nowhere near the mere potentials of technology. Is technology perfect? Of course not. It does have its negatives just like so many other great inventions do. It is because of those negatives that I am getting a degree in Computer Science with a concentration in Information Assurance and Security to be a cybersecurity specialist in both the private sector and in the National Guard before I go on to Seminary to answer God’s calling into the field of Ministry. My point is that technology has the power to do so many great and bad things, though I believe as a whole, the good outweighs the bad by far.
So where does the Reformation come in here? Well for starters, the ability to get information at the speed of light has such a great effect on the Reformation. The internet is where I found out a lot about the Reformation. Trust me… When you’re in a group chat with James and Ashton (The other writers for the Reformed Alliance), the internet becomes your best friend for searching up different terms and people, especially for those who are new to the faith and are eager to learn. It is so much easier to research in today’s world than it was in the old days.
Speaking of research… I am in the process of writing a major research essay for my English class where I will be analyzing a current event through one of the poems we have read in class. I decided to write about how technology has affected the Reformation. For this paper, I will have to do some researching. Researching via technology is drastically different than the old-fashioned way. Back in the old days, people had to get off their couches to actually find these things called books (I know, shocker). Now, all I have to work out is my fingers, and in seconds I can find thousands of references to what I want. How incredible is that? A lot of time, we take technology for granted. However, we should remember to thank God for these inventions.
Not only do those things further the advancement of the Reformation, but they also remind us of Sola Scriptura and how Scripture has the highest authority in this world. After all, it was breathed out by God. Because of this, all Christians should read the Bible on a daily basis and with the availability of technology, we can effectively study it. There is no excuse for not reading and knowing the Bible. On the Bible app alone, we can study over 1,500 versions by reading or listening. We can add our own highlights, bookmarks, and notes. On top of this, it is completely free to use. Besides that app, there are so many websites (biblegateway.com is my favorite) that, again, let us read and study it for free. In addition to that, we have the ability to study the Bible in the original language (I use biblehub.com). I cannot stress this enough: Technology is truly impacting the Reformation today in such a positive way.
At the same time, we need to be aware of the dangers of technology. Yes, very bad things have come out of using technology, but the same could go for other inventions. For example: vehicles. They can be very dangerous and deadly, but the majority of people use them nonetheless. Another invention: the gun. Can they be used to kill? Yes. But those things have only been used as bad inventions when a bad person was behind the trigger or the wheel. The same goes for technology. Unfortunately, people of the world use it for evil reasons. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 (ESV) says, “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” Most of those acts can be done by using technology. Sexual immoral and adulterers use it for pornography. Thieves and the greedy use it to steal identity, information, etc. Revilers use it to bully others online with their harsh and cruel language, and swindlers use it for scams. These are the reasons why I want to do cybersecurity once I graduate. It sickens me that those things happen, especially using something that should be used to further advance humanity, Christianity, and the Reformation.
Overall, technologies like cell phones, computers (When I say computers, I obviously mean Apple computers), and other devices have such a huge effect on the Reformation. They have the potential and capabilities to do such great things for the Reformation today. However, they have also been used for evil and awful acts from people of the world. Regardless of anything else, that much is true. However, I would argue that God has given us this technology to further advance the Reformation, just like He did with the printing press. Just as it says in 1 Corinthians 10:31 (ESV), “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” Ultimately, it is us Christians that should use it to further glorify God. And with that…
Soli Deo Gloria!