Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Like the Bereans - Even on Facebook!

We’re all learning, aren’t we?  We receive an urgent e-mail from a friend saying that our house will burn down in 3 minutes unless we unplug our televisions.  As soon as we finish scurrying around the house unplugging televisions, we forward the e-mail to our entire address book because, after all, we don’t want the homes of our friends to burn down.  A few minutes later, we receive a reply from a levelheaded friend who informs the entire distribution list, “This is not true information.  Please disregard the e-mail and plug your televisions back in.”    We feel a bit foolish, but thought it better to be safe than sorry.

It’s happened to all of us – we get caught up in the hype, then react out of care and concern for our friends.  Sometimes we receive not-so-gentle reminders that we should have taken a moment to verify the information before passing it on.   ( is a good source for that, by the way).   

So, we’re learning.  But are we handling the Word of God in the same way?  This next example is true (I made up the story about unplugging televisions).  A friend of mine posted a wonderful graphic about loving others on Facebook.  I don’t believe she was the original source.   It listed practical steps to love others with a Scripture reference for each step.  Since I am facilitating a study on love in Sunday school, I thought to share it with the class. 

As I looked at the list more closely, something looked a little fishy.  One of the verses caught my eye and as I recalled, it had nothing to do with the action step listed.  When I looked it up in my Bible, I found that I was incorrect and the scripture reference was accurate.  But it made me wonder, how many times have I blindly forwarded references to God’s Word that aren’t correct?  As careful as I have become with potential urban legends, am I taking the same measure of care with God’s Word?

Sharing information seems to become easier every day.   When receiving or sharing the Word of God, we have a responsibility to examine the scriptures as the Bereans who “were more noble minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so. “  Acts 17:11 (NASB).    I love that they were eager, but still verified the information.    We can be excited to learn more about the Lord, but must be careful not to soak in every Internet post as fact. 

There’s a lot of garbage out there.  Take care not to blindly accept it all as truth.  Let’s dust off our Bibles to see for ourselves, and then share God’s truth with confidence.


  1. Another good one to verify sources:
    not to say any of them really know or state the truth.

    Glad your house is okay!

  2. Thank you! I've not heard of that site before.