What Does The Bible Say About TikTok?

What Does The Bible Say About TikTok?

Let’s start with some stats. TikTok has over 1 billion active users. 167 million TikTok videos are watched every minute. In 2021 TikTok was the most downloaded app in the U.S.A. and 32.5% of its American users are aged between 10 and 19.

So, what can a 2,000-year-old text tell us about a 21st century media phenomenon? The printing press hadn’t even been invented when the Bible was written. The technology that we carry around in our pockets would have bewildered someone from 50 years ago, never mind 2,000; but, the thing is, although the internet may make us feel like the most sophisticated people who’ve ever lived, we’re still the same flawed human beings we were 2,000 years ago and we need the Lord’s guidance as much as we ever did, and we always will. 

TikTok is seductive, and like the snake in the garden, it whispers in our ears. The more you use it, the better it gets to know you, serving up just what you want, ceaselessly feeding your appetite. It encourages us to compare ourselves to others, to covet earthly possessions, to show off, to be vain. Consider what Saint Paul says to the Galatians.

‘Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.’ Galatians 1:10

What Saint Paul said all that time ago is eternally relevant: are you trying to win the approval of other people or God? Used indiscriminately all social media has a tendency to encourage vanity, narcissism and envy. When Saint Paul wrote to Timothy, advising him about his path to the ministry, he warned him about those who would seek to corrupt him. He could well be describing much of social media. 

‘People will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy.’ 2 Timothy 3:2

The Tenth Commandment is different from the first nine, those are concerned with actions, the tenth concerns that which goes on in the heart and mind, it tells us not to be envious of the possessions of others. It is a commandment that any Christian who uses social media needs to have at the front of their mind. 

Is all social media evil?

Is all language evil? Are all books evil? Of course not. Social media is a wonderful tool with which can communicate, but like all tools, it must be used with care. We can use TikTok to strengthen our faith by viewing Christian content. We can use social media to connect with Christians around the world. Saint Paul used letters to communicate with the early Church communities; today he would be using social media. Social media, however, should never be a substitute for connecting with people in real life, it should never be a substitute for church or reading the bible.

‘What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self?’ Luke 9:25

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