Is Social Media Encouraging You to Become a Fool?
Thinking about Ecclesiastes 7:9.
Did you know that social media is trying to teach you to be angry by rewarding you when you become angry?
A new Yale University study published in the journal ‘Science Advances’ shows how online networks encourage us to express more moral outrage over time. This is because expressing outrage online gets more likes than other interactions. The increased number of likes and shares teach people to be angrier. — CORDIS
Social media platforms want to make you angry. Because when you are outraged, you engage more. That’s why you are often shown things in your feed that either stir up your anger or provide support for the anger you feel about a particular situation.
Now — I’m not here to tell you to quit using your favorite social media site. Social media has a lot of benefits. But, as Christians, we must understand how social media sites could negatively impact our lives.
I’m reminded of what Solomon wrote about getting angry quickly.
Be not quick in your spirit to become angry, for anger lodges in the heart of fools. (Ecclesiastes 7:9)
Social media wants to stir you up quickly. They want your anger to spew forth in a torrent of words, and they reward you for your behavior by sending a lot of attention to what you post.
But God says, “By being quick to get angry, you show yourself to be a fool.” Do we value attention on social media more than God’s wisdom?
This principle is emphasized again in the New Testament.
So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God. (James 1:19–20)
Being quick to anger does not produce the righteousness of God. It makes us a fool — not wise.
So let’s be careful. Use social media for its benefits, but be aware of how it tries to undermine your walk with God.