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Elizabeth Blankenship DB1 Technology is, at times, considered by Christians in a negative light. This is especially true when using technology becomes another way of conforming to the world (Romans 12:2). However, there is evidence in the Bible that technology is looked upon favorably by God. For example, Psalm 119:105 reads, "Your word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light for my path." The lamp is a form of technology and if one views God's Word in a positive light, then the lamp should be taken positively as well. Discuss the following questions: 1. How has technology helped facilitate your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples that you have found helpful. 2. How has technology hindered your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples. 3. How has technology facilitated my spiritual development? 1. Many years ago, my husband was working on getting his degree in pastoral studies. Back then, we slowly accumulated ever so many books to start his reference library. Being military, we had to schlep all those books from place to place, and the usually the only casualty of the move was the book shelves! Brad, my husband, had heard about a site called logos ( that originally offered the physical books. Eventually, they started offering the pastor’s reference library in a handy program. Made writing papers for school a breeze. Then the advent of the smart phone, and pretty soon, logos had an app. That program has been a life saver to not only my husband for his various papers, but it has helped our children with their homeschool assignments, my bachelor’s degree, my master’s degree, and also helping with my weekly lessons for my fifth and sixth grades girls for church. Logos offers many different versions of the Bible, Bible studies, daily verses, concordance, and a plethora of other references. I have made use of all of them. It never ceases to amaze me what I will find on that app. 2. Another technological advancement that has facilitated my spiritual development is the advent of online classes and degrees. I grew up before the invention of Facebook. I was a Junior when our high school got a “computer lab”! I learned to type on an electric typewriter, used 5 ¼” and 2 ½” floppy’s. My first degree was earned by sitting in a classroom setting and interacting with the profs and other students. I just recently graduated with my Bachelor’s in Computer Science and never stepped foot in Virginia! I am able to interact with both my fellow classmates and my professors without ever leaving the comfort of my own couch. Liberty University, and others like it, have not only advanced countless people’s spiritual lives, but advanced their education as well. Being a military spouse, I have friends all over the world. Because of this digital world we now find ourselves in, I have been able to participate in Bible studies with friends on different continents. It has been amazing praying with people all over the world. Getting a different perspective on a passage and having a meaningful discussion over hard topics. Technology can and has been very advantageous. 1. When I was in Sunday School as a girl, we would do sword drills. It was always a contest to see who could find the passage the first. I have never forgot that. I have been a teacher for AWANA for 13 years now. I have seen how most children have no idea what the various parts of the passage mean, let alone how to find it. Even if a child does not have a Bible app on their phone, all they have to do is type it into to a search engine, and viola, the passage is displayed, even in the search results. Usually one of the first search results are from BibleGateway (BibleGateway, n.d.) While this site is wonderful, especially from a research perspective, it gives you exactly the verse requested, and not the full context of the verse. People have forgotten how to find book, chapter, verse in the Bible. I have to admit, I was a bit stumped for a second way technology has been detrimental. I did a bit of research and had to agree with the author of this article, “Is Your Technology Use Hurting Your Church?” by Andrew Conrad. One of the areas was self-reliance. Instead of turning to each other, we are more apt to turn to Google instead. (Conrad, 2017) Hebrews 10:24-25, “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing but encouraging one another – all the more as you see the day approaching.” (NIV) Sometimes I forget that meeting with other believers is not only important, it is vital to my spiritual health. References Bible Study has never been easier. (n.d.). Retrieved October 26, 2018, from BibleGateway. (n.d.). Retrieved October 26, 2018, from Conrad, A. (2017, December 14). Is Your Technology Use Hurting Your Church? Retrieved October 26, 2018, from Liberty University Christian College Education. (n.d.). Retrieved October 26, 2018, from Michael Russell DB#1 Russell COLLAPSE Biblical View of Technology Michael Russell BMIS 520 IT Infrastructure Like all things, technology can be perceived as a useful tool or hindrance in one's way of life. My father-in-law is a Christian that believes technology evolution has become more of a hindrance than it has been useful in his daily life. His approach is that he has survived 64 years without computers what is another 20-30 more? When hearing this argument I start to think about all of the advancements in technology and how it has empowered people to do bigger and better things. However, it's true of the opposite end of the spectrum as well with our social interactions taking a plunge along with motivational drive that leads to self-achievement or physical fitness. At times machines and technology become imbalanced with religious views of human wholeness and moral essentials based on their constant focus solely on efficiency and profitability (Christians, 2002). Technology has had such an impact on our daily lives that it affects not only our physical fitness but our mental and spiritual standing as well. The apologetic evangelistic goal is not so much asking colleagues and students to consider the challenge of Jesus as something that comes from outside but rather something already deeply embedded within their own taken for granted, western cultural framework. Despite its superficial secularity, without the presence of Christ western culture is ultimately morally confused or pessimistic (Barns, 2006). How has technology helped facilitate my spiritual development? Within my time here on Earth, I want to leave my impact print on others in the way the Lord intended me to do so. This envisions for my part in God's work isn't always clear but has been enhanced with the accessibility of several different ways to understand the word of God. Unlike generations before us, we have the ability to dive deeper and broader in helping us understand what it is we actually believe in, not just what we were raised to believe. Having a structurally sound upbringing is ideal however it too has potential for failure as well. In my time trying to understand my own beliefs, I have come across technology that has aided me in truly discovering myself spiritually with respect to the Lord. For instance, I have the ability to look up interpretations of God's word straight from my cell phone almost anywhere and at any time. As confusing as the Bible gets for me at times, I find it useful to see how others are interoperating passages and drawing my own thoughts off of reasoning with them. I compare it to looking at reviews of a particular product you buy from a retailer in order to make sure you have a quality product. In my situation, that product is my relationship with God. Within my church, there are prayer requests that are sent out through email which is another form of technology that has bound our members together even closer than before. I love the reach we now have because of technology because I know the impact of prayer on people in times of need. Whether it is a family member in crises or a stranger in need of condolences, we have the ability to spread love in which our creator intended for us to do. How has technology hindered my spiritual development? As good as technology can be, there is always the other side. At times, I personally have issues with keeping a balance with technology and my family. Leaning on my family for spiritual guidance is not uncommon and sometimes I feel technology creates a barrier with how much I am indulged with it. Going from oral-based to text-based communication, people have taken more control on others perceptions of who they are where face-to-face communication requires immediate responses giving a lesser perceptional view if not brushed up on their skills and socially involved physically (Lee, 2013). While watching over my two little boys, I notice they are constantly looking to me for guidance in how to act. Guiding them correctly is what I perceive as my top priority but I find myself paying attention more to my cell phone than to my two boys when they would rather have my attention. Social media has become a huge crutch for many and is proving to cause some real social norm changes within our ever-changing world. It's sometimes hard to just step back and live the life other than virtually through technology all the time when being emerged with it through work. Spiritually we all need an interactive portion to keep needed healthy relationships in our lives and I feel that this sometimes can be significantly hindered by constantly leaning on technology rather than physically being involved in the lives of those we love. Along with this, is where I find that separation exists for those who block out the world until it has gotten too far where people become depressed or lose sight of their own life meaning in which God intended for us. I thankfully do not have this bad of an issue but it always makes me think I could be doing more with my time than being glued to the technology. I find enjoyment in having the right balance to help me keep my wits on life and where my priorities lie. Being wrapped up in technology can cause an individual to miss out on what I call the good struggle. Those who had to work harder physically in the past benefited with their physical fitness deeming it a struggle with a hidden perk however with the technology of today many things require little effort in our physical fitness approach. Laziness is an absolute aversion by our creator, however, laziness has become the route of creating a more efficient process. References Barns, I. (2006). Reflecting on modernity's 'unfinished Christian business': Teaching technology policy as a form of reflective Christian communication. Journal of Christian Education, 49(2), 514. doi:10.1177/002196570604900202. Christians, C. G. (2002). Religious perspectives on communication technology. Journal of Media and Religion, 1(1), 37-47. doi:10.1207/S15328415JMR0101_5. Lee, Y. (2013). The technologizing of faith: An ethnographic study of christian university students using online technology. Christian Education Journal: Research on Educational Ministry, 10(1), 125-138. doi:10.1177/073989131301000110. Joseph Wilk Spiritual Development COLLAPSE How has technology helped facilitate your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples that you have found helpful. The use of technology has greatly helped my spiritual development to the point where I know more about my faith then I did before I started using technology. With the use of mobile devices and the ability to search for literature that is held in various locations throughout the world that I may not be able to access in person. This has allowed me to dive deeper into my faith. With my mobile device, I can listen to faith programs or music while on the go. The use of this piece of technology had greatly facilitated my walk; because with my job I am always on the go and might not have a chance to attend church on Sunday or be able to go to a bible study during the week at my home church. I am able to use my mobile device to connect remotely with my study group. I can use the Internet to look up literature and read it while on the go without having to physically be in that place that has it; I am able to check it out online and use e-books. How has technology hindered your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples. Technology has hindered my spiritual development in a few ways. A few being the need to memorize verses, paying attention in service or while in a bible study, or getting tempted to look at things that I should not. While having the ability to pull up the Bible with a finger and search for keywords, this has caused me not to memorize verses like I should. Having the bible app on my phone is an easy access to the word, but it is also a way for me to get distracted. Another way technology has hindered my spiritual development is always wanting to look at my cell phone or the screen behind or to the side of the pastor that has things on it. This can lead me to lose focus on the message and what God is trying to tell me, as I focus on those items and do not really pay attention at all. With so many different apps that are on cell phones, it is easy for one to get lost in time by playing the games or surfing social media. Technology has made it easier to access things that are not of God and can lead to temptation. Social media, for example, can lead to feels of greed, hate, jealousy, and some other bad feelings that go against what it means to be a Christian. The idea of the use of technology where spiritual development is concerned can be seen and used in so many ways in life. What we must do is be willing to use technology to enhance his kingdom and our spiritual walk. There have been many studies over the years that have shown how technology can help and hinder spiritual development and the spreading of his kingdom. In one study that done was by Vhumani Magezi (2015) he states “that a number of pastors reported that considering the extent of technological advancement and consequent use in people's lives, one has to embrace technology aggressively. (p. 3)” With what he found out in his study is that a way to attract young people one needs to use technology to make church enjoyable. While overall technology as a whole is not a bad thing it can be if it is not controlled. There have been many good things that have come out with the advancement of technology. It has led to more people in places that did not have access to a bible to have one, as they can use an app on their phone or other devices that have Internet access. While technology advancements may seem bad to the older generation, it has allowed the younger crowd to get into church and learn what God is about. In a study done by Joel Arthur and Chris Rensleigh (2015) said that younger people find technology a necessity and it is an accepted part of the culture. They also state that while the church moves forward with time, they cannot afford not to use online technologies. Tech is all around us and we need to use it to reach the younger people of this world to keep the faith alive and expand our own faith at the same time. References Arthur, J., & Rensleigh, C. (2015). The use of online technologies in the small church. SA Journal of Information Management, 17(1), 1-6. doi:10.4102/sajim.v17il.630 Magezi, V. (2015). Technologically changing African context and usage of Information Communication and Technology in Churches: Towards Discerning Emerging Identities in Church Practice (a case study of two Zimbabwean cities). HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies, 71(2), 1-8. doi:10.4102/hts.v7li2.2626 Matthew Newell Forum 1 COLLAPSE As technology and the digital footprint has started to stabilize in our daily lives and as it keeps on changing and improving; churches are learning to adapt and make their digital footprint. Technology will improved the spiritual development of many people by new applications and digital video and audio. As bookstores have declined in recent years, people can now go to an app and read the bible or download a book to help them further develop their faith. This helps us rent digital books and free applications to read anytime and it is usually free or of a lower cost that everyone can afford and use anytime. Free apps and books allow people to try out what works best for them and they can keep trying to they find out what products work best for them, you would not want someone to buy a book about God and think that was it, and they should not waste their money anymore (Lee & Dong-hee, 2017). I have the bible on audible that I listen to and use applications that provide daily biblical devotionals to read and reflect on each day. I also check out many leadership and biblical books through a library app that helps me strengthen my faith. As churches have started to embrace technology, watching sermons live streamed, on YouTube or podcasts has become the normal way to receive the word of God. This allows people11 to watch there service anytime or anywhere from different devices. YouTube allows me to watch sermons from years past of Billy Graham to new sermons in other states, it allows me to educate myself in an online learning environment such as school and focus on one certain topic (Olasina, 2017). Podcasts has also helped people to listen to sermons while they do other activities, such as driving or working out. In my life I have joined an online church from a different state and watch their sermons and listen to their podcasts every week. Technology has improved our way of receiving the word of God and can help us grow closer to him; however it hinders our faith my distracting us and putting negative thought in our mind. The problem with technology is that we can take it anywhere, and it is everywhere we go. I have to find time away from television and technology and be able to focus on and rest in God’s presence without distractions. Technology also puts many negative thoughts into people’s mind, such as Instagram, Facebook and television. They mold people’s mind into thinking that they should live and look a certain way, putting self-doubt and sinful desires into our minds; they can impact things that we do and who we are going to become (Shows, 2018). This ultimately pulls everyone farther away from God and makes us look to other things to fulfill us. I think that technology is a good thing for us we just need to limit ourselves to it and discipline ourselves to use technology to grow with God and not set us back. References Lee, J. & Dong-hee, S. (2017). Positive Side Effects of In-App Reward Advertising: Free Items Boost Sales: A Focus on Sampling Effects. Journal of Advertising Research, Vol. 57, P. 272-282. Doi: 10.2501/JAR-2017-036 Olasina, G. (2017). An Evaluation of Educational Values of YouTube Videos for Academic Writing. African Journal of Information Systems, Vol. 9, P. 232-261. Retrieved from &AN=126447026 Shows, D. & Albinsson, P. (2018). Technology Over-Consumption: Helping Students Find Balance in a World of Alluring Distractions. Atlantic Marketing Journal, Vol. 7, P. 1-23, Retrieved from &AN=129817787 Yohannes Anbese Biblical View of Technology COLLAPSE Technological advancement changes how humans live their life, including Christians. This advancement is not all good and not all bad. Even though the technology has helped me in one part of my spiritual development, it has also hindered me from other important components of my spiritual life. How has technology helped facilitate my spiritual development? The fast growing information technology and cheaply available internet resources have helped me a lot to get access to plenty of biblical documents online. Bible commentaries, daily devotional materials, listening to audio bible from my cell phone even while driving, getting materials on biblical archeological studies, looking at geographical locations of biblical places from online study materials. Generally, because of easily available high speed internet, I can read and watch plenty of helpful biblical materials. The Skype technology also the other technological component that helped me a lot in my spiritual development. I used to live in Maryland, with my family. We had a bible study group there, and we used to meet once a week. We enjoyed getting together on that day. Since we were on the same age and grew up together, we understood each other and felt free to dig deep into the bible. Suddenly, I and my family had to move out from Maryland because of my new work project. We were sad leaving the group behind. After a month or two, the skype idea came to our mind. We got connected to our big TV screen using a webcam, and continued our bible study and prayer program on skype until we were associated to the local church in our new location. My wife extended this skype experience to create prayer group with my sisters living outside US. How has technology hindered my spiritual development? Few years back Sunday morning was very special to me and my family. We got up early morning, took our breakfast and go to church. There were a lot of activities within the church building. Greeting people, shaking hands, hugging, conversation about family or work, and then worship together singing and dancing before the Lord. After the church program completes there was blessing of one another, wishing the best for the coming week, giving prayer title to friends for the week. Then, our churches started broadcasting their program online to reach those who couldn’t come. Since the technology is available it is wise to utilize this and try to reach as many people as possible with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then, I sometimes felt lazy and stayed at home and attending our church program online. Now, I am too lazy to drive to church on Sunday morning. The technology that helps to reach to many people through online broadcasting took away my energy to go to church and I lost the benefit of physically meeting my brothers and sisters in Christ. The bible encourages us to go to church as it is written, “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching” (Hebrews 10:25 NIV). When we go to church there is encouragement of one another; because we all are gathered there for one sole purpose, to worship the Lord our God. There is also prayer to one another. Klett (2018) discussed the current trend of Christians absenteeism from church in relation to technological advancements by referencing Pew research materials. The other technology that has hindered my spiritual development is entertainment and media. The cheaply available entertainment channels, movie streaming and sport channels have consumed my time. I used to read books, other than text books. Spiritual books, history and different society cultural books. I was enjoying reading books. When I wanted to watch movies, I had to go to cinema or go out and rent from nearby Redbox kiosk, which I couldn’t do it every day. Now I can get tons of movies on Netflix for which I pay $10 a month, this is the amount which I used to pay to rent not more than 3 movies from Redbox. This and other easily available entertainment programs completely consumed my time and made me lost my reading habit, and even struggling to get a prayer time. The bible in the book of Romans says, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2 NIV). Since we take in a lot of information from the world through media and entertainments, they are shaping our life and some point we found ourselves living by sight not by faith. It is becoming difficult to find a difference between a believer of Jesus Christ and a non-believer. In conclusion, the fast-growing technology brought plenty of opportunity for Christians to reach out peoples anywhere on earth with the gospel of Jesus Christ. The technology helps us to use our time efficiently by avoiding or reducing unnecessary travels. We can even reach to thousands of people on social media just from the comfort of our living room. That is wonderful. Nevertheless, this simplicity doesn’t come without a price. It creates Christians who we are too lazy to go to church. Having fellowship and meeting other Christians in a church is an important thing to get encouraged in our spiritual journey. Courage is contagious. When we are getting ourselves out from the church and Christians groups, I think we will somehow fulfil the devil’s wish. This is probably the starting point for a backsliding Christian. “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity! It is like precious oil poured on the head, running down on the beard, running down on Aaron’s beard, down on the collar of his robe. It is as if the dew of Hermon were falling on Mount Zion. For there the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore” (Psalm 133:1-3 NIV) Reference Klett, L. M. (2018, February 5). Here's How Media Hurts and Helps the Church, According to Research. The Christian Post. Retrieved from Dali Ramos Technology: A Christian Advancement or Hindrance? COLLAPSE Technology: A Christian Advancement or Hindrance? Dali Ramos Liberty University Technology: A Christian Advancement or Hindrance? Technology helps to facilitate spiritual development with the use of readily accessible mobile applications. One example of this development is apparent in the introduction of the audio Bible app which touches on both the spiritual and physical pillars. The Audio Bible app allows individuals to explore the wisdom hidden in the Bible while traveling or exercising. Likewise, as technology appears to have synthesized itself into daily culture, religions that have embraced this change have kept religion relevant in people’s lives. (Rinker, 2016) I have personally used the goTandem app which sends Bible verses daily and can be personalized to send only verses that I want to see. It almost feels like God is sending me spiritual reminders with phrases such as, “Don’t forget to pray.” While technology has reinforced availability of the Bible, it can also be utilized as tool for conducting research on the word. Accessibility of the Bible I have learned that the Bible contains a story that cannot be fully interpreted after one read. The Internet aids readers by providing the resources necessary for research on biblical topics. This accessibility was noted in the revolutionary impact of the internet as a transformational force in the Catholic Church. (Maignant, 2017) Additionally, social media sites such as Facebook connects struggling Christians with church communities in real-time. Lim (2017) identified the effectiveness of social media as a tool to engage and reach people which in turn engrained churches into the culture. Further, the internet allows Christians to network internationally and reach a diverse audience globally. Technology has the ability to advance the Christian culture, but in the wrong hands it can be used as a tool for evil. Abusing Technology and Addictions Hackers take advantage of technology and use it to harass people in the digital real. One way they accomplish this is by stealing a victim’s identity which allows them to purchase items under a false pretense. Additionally, hackers can utilize scanners to steal credit card information through ATM transactions. Further, Hackers can also plant fake websites which utilize click-bait techniques to inject viruses into systems. This form of thievery goes against the commandments of God, “nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9-10) I have personally struggled in the past by ignoring my idolization of my gaming addiction. This technological addiction hindered my faith because it distracted me from my relationship with God and realities of life. Likewise, reliance on social media has proven to be equally addicting for many people. Over 210 million people suffer from social media addictions because of their need for entertainment and an inability to “un-plug” from the internet. (Longstreet, 2017) At this point, it becomes difficult to see “past the phone”. Conclusion The internet connects churches with users globally while simultaneously providing real-time access to the Bible. Apps further improve this connection by engraining Christianity into the culture. On the other hand, this same technology is used to harm and steal personal information by hacking. Also, technology can easily become addicting to those who cannot cope with reality. Finally, technology is not inherently evil or good. As such, it is important for Christians to find a balance while utilizing technology to enhance and not overcome their lives. References Lim, A. (2017). Effective ways of using social media: An investigation of christian churches in south australia. Christian Education Journal: Research on Educational Ministry, 14(1), 23-41. doi:10.1177/073989131701400103 Longstreet, P., & Brooks, S. (2017). Life satisfaction: A key to managing internet & social media addiction. Technology in Society, 50, 73-77. doi:10.1016/j.techsoc.2017.05.003 Maignant, C. (2017). The irish catholic church and the internet. New Hibernia Review, 21(4), 2038. doi:10.1353/nhr.2017.0047 Rinker, C. H., Roof, J., Harvey, E., Bailey, E., & Embler, H. (2016). Religious apps for smartphones and tablets: Transforming religious authority and the nature of religion. Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on Religion, 12 David Arrington Technology and Spiritual Development COLLAPSE How has technology helped facilitate your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples that you have found helpful. I have spent most of my life deeply involved and submerged in technology, computers, and scientific categories. Ever since I was 8 years old, I have been captivated by the sheer amount of awe and wonder that is involved with computer systems, networks, and servers. During my childhood, my parents let me play on and use older computer systems. In addition, I spent my time deconstructing a computer system; and, rebuilding it from the deconstruction. This helped allow me to understand how a computer worked, what components went where, and what caused potential failures and issues in computers. Having been subjected to computers, as expected, I had to rationalize and mutually relate technology with my spiritual belief system. Growing up as a Christian, I was raised to believe in God. Furthermore, having accepted Jesus as my personal savior, I have been presented with some situations that required ethical and moral decisions that relate to being a Christian and being subjected to technology. 1 Corinthians 10:31 tells us to “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” (Biblegateway). I have learned in my career in Information Technology that, even what you do on computers, reflects how you do it for the glory of God. The complex and advanced aspects of computers, from general web browsing, down to learning binary language and how it affects electrons in circuitry, has helped me realize what an amazing Creator God is to create such a marvelous system. Another aspect that technology has helped facilitate to my spiritual development is serious accountability. In information technology, one has a plethora of options, resources, and utilities at one’s disposal. Being able to keep a moral ground and resist temptation to do anything “wrong” or “bad” has helped me learn accountability and ensure that I am working for the glory of God. How has technology hindered your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples. On the opposite end, technology can lead individuals toward paths of narcissism and arrogance. Computers have certainly tempted me down these paths at time. For example, when working with other individuals in information technology and since it is a very competitive field, one can find himself thinking he is smarter or better than peers at tasks or skills. Often, I have found peers in this industry to have subscribed to thoughts and beliefs that are opposite of believing in God or that He exists. Furthermore, working in computers can sometimes lead someone towards a “god complex”, depending on how successful or skilled one is at. Believe that one is so skilled and smart that he does not need God or anything else can be its own fallacy. According to Tatusko, in his article, he states that: “William Stahl, professor of sociology at Luther College ” “employs a hermeneutic of suspicion to "'demythologize' technological mysticism," (Tatusko, 2002). This mysticism includes a “myth” that: “(4) technology is infallible” (Tatusko, 2002). This is another example on how one can be hindered in spiritual development by technology. Society today can believe that technology is perfection; and, that it can do no “wrong”, aside from bugs and issues that lead to troubleshooting. We have heard that “computers never lie” as a common knowledge phrase. I have been tempted at times to believe that technology is perfection. However, technology is just another application of society and human invention. Computers were originally “thought” and “designed” by God. Our use and application of technology only glorifies Him. References Biblegateway. 1&version=NIV Tatusko, A. (2002). God and the chip: Religion and the culture of technology. Theology Today, 59(2), 330-331. Retrieved from Jerry Chen Technology and spiritual development COLLAPSE With the development of the technology, it changes all the aspects of our life style. We can get answers to any questions just by look it up on the Internet. We can even talk to a AI device to play music, text your friends, and even ordering takeouts. We can use our smart watch to monitor our sleep, workout, and daily activities. Specially, it makes our spiritual development very efficient. In the early 20th century, especially in the United States, radio took evangelical sermons out of the sacred space of the church and placed them right in people’s living rooms. (Nicole Dean, 2018) This is a perfect example how technology help to spread the God's wisdom. No more standing outside the corner of the street and pass out the handouts. With a simple broadcasting, we can spread the gossip fast and efficient. Of course nobody listening to the radio anymore now days, but the good news is we don't have to carry the Bible with us all the time to read the God's wisdom any more. With a simple App on our smart phone, we can read Bibles and other spiritual books anytime and anywhere. Grew up in a Christian family, my mom has been sending me the spiritual readings everyday. Even we are thousands of miles away, we can still spiritually connected through technology. Even for the old generations that are not so good at the smart phones, they can still enjoy the good PA system and a big nice projector screen they have at the church. With some well developed power points slide shows, the church are more than a "school" of God's wisdom, but a happy "after school" that people actually enjoy and learning at the same time. As a visual learner, I find even a small clip of video can make a huge difference of passing the point you are trying to make by just talk your way through it. However, with all the great development of technology that are helping to facilitate our spiritual development, there are still some ways that hindered our spiritual life. With the easy access of all the information on the Internet, it is easy to hindered our spiritual development by just one wrong click of a link. Next thing we know we might be exposed to extreme wrong information about gossip and the totally wrong understanding of the God's wisdom. Another specific example, when I was in church last Sunday, I saw those parents hand the kid their phone in order for them to sit during the entire service and being "quiet". It is considerate for them to do such thing to keep their kid from interrupting the service but at the same time, I feel like they "disgrace" the service and the God. Now days, there are less people believe in God and follow God's wisdoms given by the Bible, specially our young generations. Even it might come from different aspect of their life and environment that they grow up with, but if there is less distraction created by the technology, they would be much better off. Another important aspect of the technology hindering the spiritual growth is waste time. We spend more times each day on our phone than actually talk to people. Kid are playing video games, parents are busy "surfing" on the Internet and watching Youtube. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. (Ephesians 5: 11-12) God does not like his kid to waste time on the "unfruitful" works which is playing video games and watching Youtube. Although some of the after work activity is good for us to relax but if it is too much, it can be easily hinder our spiritual growth. Even with all the good and bad aspect of technology brings to our growth of our spiritual life, I think God creates technology to make us remember him, we can use our phone to take beautiful pictures of the mountains he create and the beautiful person that he sends to our life. Technology is always a double edge sword that can always turns to a bad influnce to our spiritual life, it all depends on how we utilizing the technology. Citation Dean, N. (2018, July 19). Many Ways of Connecting: Where Spirituality and Technology Meet » Brain World. Retrieved October 25, 2018, from David Lafevor Technology and Spiritual Development COLLAPSE Technology and Spiritual Development David Lafevor Liberty University It is a complex relationship between technology and spiritual formation. As pointed out by Deitweiler, technological advancements have been occurring from Creation. “Creation arose from holding back chaos” (Deitweiler, p. 31). If technology can be defined as anything to make our everyday tasks safer, easier, more efficient, safer, etc. There are countless ways that technology can bring us closer to God in our Christian walk. However, where there is ease and comfort, there is also the urge to stay comfortable and rely on the items that we interpret as giving us comfort. It is very easy to rely on the comfort of a vehicle to take us to and from work on a daily basis. Our reliance on the vehicle will become dependence over time. We will see no way to get to work when the vehicle breaks down. Some may even lose their jobs because they can't seem to find a way to trek the miles to the job site. Failing to realize that it wasn't too long ago that the world did not have vehicles as we do today. In similar ways, we read in Genesis of a culture that wanted to build a tower. They became so engrossed that they cast aside the dependence on God and began to depend on their own “creation”. Our dependence on technology can be the downfall of our Christian walk if we fail to let the technology bring us closer to God. Technology Facilitating Spiritual Growth My personal walk with the Lord has grown immensely through the use of technology. I began my college studies at Nazarene Bible College Online Education in 2005. Studying for the ministry online was a difficult task, but it became easier and easier as time went on. Facilitating the online study, routine assignments were also practiced in the local church and watched over by the local pastor. Because I was in the Navy, attending a school in person was not an option. However, I developed a close walk with the Lord through the forums, homework, study and online discussions in each class. It would be a mistake to leave the discussion on technology to only the computer. I believe another area of spiritual growth was enhanced with the radio. I can remember as a young kid listening to a radio program titled “Unshackled”. Every week a new story would come on bringing out the testimony of a person that was once lost, but now is found. I don't know if I would have ever found my way back into church if I didn't hear those testimonies. I could relate to them and they were instrumental in my growth and development from a young age. Technology as a Distraction in my Walk It is not difficult to distract many of us from our walk with the Lord. National Highway Safety Administration estimates that during daylight hours nearly 481,000 drivers are using their cell phones (“Distracted Driving”, 2018). If it is evident that nearly half of a million people cannot put down their cell phones while driving, it should also be evident that people are distracted from their spiritual walk by that very cell phone. For example, many people now do devotions through their new Bible application on the phone. What would happen if a text message comes in. Would the text interrupt what God is trying to say? In my personal situation, that is the harsh reality of what technology can accomplish. What was meant to bring positive communications, ease of scheduling, organization of data, etc. has become a giant distraction from the important things in life. Truly cell phones as a distraction from God are an easy example to pick up. However, our life is filled with distractions caused by technology. The TV, radio, phone, computer, and internet are always providing distractions to our life. If anything prevents us from a disciplined approach to spiritual formation, it can become a sin. Any technology can be used by the devil to distract us from our walk with the Lord. References Detweiler, C. (2013). Igods : how technology shapes our spiritual and social lives [E-Reader Version]. Retrieved from Distracted Driving. (2018, October 25). Retrieved from Saundrea Johnson DB Forum 1: Positive and Negative of technology in Spiritual Development COLLAPSE DB Forum 1: Positive and Negative of technology in Spiritual Development Saundrea Johnson Liberty University Technology Enhancing Spiritual Growth In history we read that Jesus’ disciple-making tools included the Scripture (Shirley, 2017). Currently disciple-making tools still include Scripture but may be accessed at any time from a mobile device through technology features. The internet and other electronic media contribute to our way of thinking, while influencing internal and external relationship building (Shirley, 2017). Mobile applications (apps) are valuable and convenient electronic resources that utilize biometric authentication to provide access to sensitive information on mobile devices, which creates flexibility in my spiritual journey. Technology advancements have changed the way we worship by creating apps and implementing live streaming services. Streaming services such as iStream and Facebook Live have allowed me to view offline services from the convenience of my home or any location that provides network connectivity to my mobile device. This service is beneficial when I am not able to attend service due to special circumstances. My present church, One Community, developed an app that provides access to various resources within the church environment. This app and several others, such as the YouVersion Bible app, have positively contributed to my spiritual development. Religious mobile apps provide understanding and practices that allow individuals to construct an array of religious identities (Bellar, 2017). The app provides a way for individuals to interact with the minister during the service with the sermon notes section. There is also a tab on the app that contains previous services live stream videos for reference. Physically attending the church service and completing the sermon notes contributes to the overall understanding of the sermon. It requires participation during the service and provides a sermon reference that may be used throughout the week. This assists with ensuring Sunday’s teachings are not only applied on Sunday, but Monday through Saturday as well. Technology Hindering Spiritual Development Technology advancements allow beneficial resources for spiritual development as well as undesirable distractions. Previously I mentioned apps are convenient resources that provide access to information, however I failed to mention that they may also cause distractions. During the initial setup of an app the user is requested to enable notifications. Notifications are pop up alerts advising of new information or updates to an app. Occasionally during church services, social media apps such as, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat, send notifications that generate pop up messages that appear on top of the screen being viewed. This distraction breaks the concentration of the message being presented. It has hindered my spiritual development by continuously creating a gap in understanding of the God’s word. Generally, when a notification is received I review the updates which causes a lost in focus of the sermon. Technology professionals have also provided a way to view scriptures and the service on projector screens. Screen Projectors have been used in the education world for many years. In early childhood settings projectors are generally used during instruction to demonstrate a new idea or concept. In the spiritual world, many facilities have begun to use screen projectors as an additional visual resource for guests. Projectors are generally used to display bible verses, eliminating the need for the physical bible and personal study during the service, lyrics to processionals during the service, as well as an additional screen for the members seated in the back of the facility. This has hindered my spiritual development by eliminating the need of a bible. In previous years, each member would bring their bible to service to review the scriptures as the minister read or referenced them. Since adding screen projects, as well as creating mobile apps, there is not a need for individuals to purchase a personal bible and perform personal studies other than on Sunday. The screen projectors have also created an excuse for young adults to sit in the back of the facility rather than closer to the front, which leads to distractions and missed information during the service. Conclusion In conclusion, technology is beneficial to spiritual development, but it may also create distractions. However, the benefits of technology resources may out way the possibility of undesirable distractions. The creation of mobile apps and streaming services has changed the spiritual culture in various ways. Both provide access to beneficial information with just a tap of a screen and a network connection. Mobile apps provide affordable convenience to all users, while streaming services provide access for spiritual development to individuals unable to attend offline services. Technology in spiritual development should not cause distractions in life but should be used to enhance the learning experience. References Bellar, W. (2017). Private practice: Using digital diaries and interviews to understand evangelical Christians’ choice and use of religious mobile applications. New Media and Society, 19(1), 111– 125. Shirley, C. (2017). Overcoming Digital Distance: The Challenge of Developing Relational Disciples in the Internet Age. Christan Education Journal, 14(2), 376-391. Patrick Howard Technology and Spiritual Development COLLAPSE Technology and Spiritual Development Patrick Howard Liberty University Technology and Spiritual Development Technology is a tool much like any other tool, it in and of itself it is neither good nor bad. It is the way technology welded that makes it take on aspects of its perceived use. Technology can advance or retreat one’s spiritual development. It is up to the individual to use technology in a way to promote their spiritual development if that is their desire. Technology and Spiritual Growth Today we have an abundance of methods to assist in our spiritual development. The Internet has made it possible to have the Lord’s Word at one’s fingertips at any time it is desired. One particular program is the YouVersion Bible application that is available on almost any mobile device. In addition to having scripture at one’s fingertips, it also provides various reading plans and ways to engage with one’s social circle to engage in a virtual Bible study. Another excellent way technology is used in church growth. According to Arthur and Rensleigh (2015) "The Web creates an online environment where the church community can have access to valuable information such as the pastor’s notes, calendar activities and weekly devotions." Having access to what is happing at the local congregation encourages participation by advertising events, beyond that which is available by the printed program. The result is that by having the schedule available online, it increases involvement in the congregation’s activities. Technology and Spiritual Decline Unfortunately, not all uses of technology have a positive outcome. The use of technology can be a distraction that draws you away from spiritual growth. It is far too easy to get on the Internet to do research and find out an hour later that time has gone by without accomplishing whatever it was that prompted the use of the Internet in the first place. Fry (2003) goes so far as to say that “those who call themselves atheists or agnostics and yet place trust and faith in science and technology” can end up worshiping technology. Looking at the use of an individuals use of mobile devices during any given Sunday at church, one may consider that it is not just the atheists that can come under the allure of worshiping technology. Technology can even hinder interpersonal relationships. Mobile devices have become such a problem with interpersonal relationships that Misra, Cheng, Genevie, and Yuan (2016) state that just having a mobile device in one’s field of view "was found to interfere with closeness, connection, and relationship quality in dyadic settings." I have found this to be true with my interactions. The desire to frequently check a cell phone that is out in the open while engaged in face to face conversations is almost overwhelming. If cell phones can cause this much interruption with the personal relationships with those around us, how much more do they interfere with our relationship with our God? Conclusion As noted above, technology can do good things and draw one into a closer relationship with the Lord. Having access to the Bible and our church community at any time of day can make our spiritual walk more fulfilling. On the other hand, technology can distract us and lead us away from Him. Ultimately, it is a burden that each one of us must come to grips with. References Arthur, J., & Rensleigh, C. (2015). The use of online technologies in the small church. South African Journal of Information Management 17(1), 2. Retrieved from Fry, L.W. (2003). Toward a theory of spiritual leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, 14(6), 707. Retrieved from Misra, S., Cheng, L., Genevie, J., & Yuan, M. (2016). The iPhone effect: The quality of in-person social interactions in the presence of mobile devices. Environment and Behavior, 48(2) 281. Retrieved from urce=summon&utm_medium=discovery-provider Rilin Desamours DB1_Phil COLLAPSE How has technology helped facilitate your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples that you found helpful. R- Today we live and enjoy a world where information availability in real-time or near-real time exchange define our lives. We consume data, information everyday at a cyclical rate and that consumption is facilitated by the ever-evolving world of technology. Technology represents an essential part of modern society, it is integrated in every aspect of our lives today both private and business. That said, technology also comes with a variety of pros and cons. Like anything in life, over consumption, overabundance and unhindered ease of outreach is and can be both valuable and detrimental. Technology is used to spread biblical message and broadcast right into the living rooms of millions. That in it of itself is a major advantage of technology. The Church is no longer limited to local audiences, essentially the world is the church. That is a good symptom, if you will, of globalization. “As many as 2500 people fill the pews each Sunday at the First Baptist Church of Texarkana, TX.” “Moreover, a Broadcast Pix Slate 1000 switcher, a live video production system that powers the giant screens, also supports broadcasts of the service locally, regionally and nationally.” Church's technology narrowcasts and broadcasts. (2007, June 14). Churches today are able to posture themselves as global churches and spread their messages across the entire world. Churches also use technology to advance their financial goals. “Northview Church now collects 60 percent of its donations online, and recently started promoting text-to-give and installing kiosks in its lobbies to accept contributions”. (Erdody, Lindsey, 14 Dec 2015). Donations, grants are some of the means of financing churches, and by offering electronic tools to collect those, allows the churches to reach significantly more people and at a significantly faster rate. I grew up in a non-biblical household, my family, although very nice people and law-abiding citizens, don’t believe in religion. So, I grew up not understanding the teaching of the bible, not rooted in the beliefs that there is a divine being that presides over us all. In the quest to find the truth, I set out to read many versions of the good book, and technology was instrumental in facilitating my research. I would use internet to research concepts, to decipher abstract messages and study concepts from those many good books that my biblically ignorant mind didn’t understand. The readily available repository of information, research data, scholar biblical articles, etc. made my research, my quest for the truth significantly easier. How has technology hindered your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples. R- The same easy access to a world of information, also gave me access to an entire world of naysayers, a world of negative beliefs peddlers, conspiracy theorists, who really have deep seated issues with Biblical teachings. This created a level of complexity for my research that I wasn’t ready for and made finding the truth harder. I was forced to discern overwhelming amount facts from unsupported philosophies and opinions. That was a challenge, which did at some point of my life negatively influence my view of the bible. While technology is a great enabler and a great tool, it also can negatively influence people. It can be used as a vessel to transport and convey individual agenda and ideology; positive and negative. Another specific example where technology can hinder spiritual development – about a year ago we had a death in our unit, the commanding officer decided we would meet and have the chaplain go through a few scriptures while we remember our fallen Marine. I was sitting in the back of the room, and I witnessed over 50% of the Marines under the age of 30 were all on their phones playing games, “Facebooking” as the young say, or just surfing the internet and texting instead of taking the time to reflect and learn something in the process. The chaplain had a pretty good message, and the lessons within that message were spiritual in nature and could’ve served those Marines well in a moment like this, had they taken the time to listen and absorb the lessons instead of “Facebooking”. This is another great example how technology can get in the way of learning, not just spiritual learning, but learning in general. Ten, fifteen years ago, these kinds of devices would’ve been so accessible, and those Marines would’ve been siting there forced to listen with no distractors. References Church's technology narrowcasts and broadcasts. (2007, June 14). Broadcast Engineering. Retrieved from TOF&xid=3cfc9787. Erdody, Lindsey. "Divinely digital: churches embrace technology to keep donations flowing." Indianapolis Business Journal, 14 Dec. 2015, p. 1A+. General OneFile, TOF&xid=f38cd813. Judith Johnson DB1 COLLAPSE Discussion Board Forum 1 Judith Johnson BMIS 520 How has technology helped facilitate your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples that you have found helpful. Technology is an integral part of day to day life in the 21 stcentury. Technology has infiltrated every aspect of our lives including our relationship with God. As stated in the quote by Stephen Whiting, technology is a tool God has allowed us to create to facilitate preaching the Gospel of Christ. Jesus said we need to “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit” and we are to teach these new disciples the way to follow Christ correctly (Matthew 28:18-19, New Living Translation). In order to reach all nations, God has allowed us to create many forms of technology. In my own experiences at my church, technology has been very fundamental to my spiritual development. Because I attend an international church, with over 8,000 locations worldwide, we rely heavily on technology to communicate with each other. Every Sabbath day (Saturday) we all watch the same sermon from the general pastor. Each Zion has to download the sermon from the church website in order to play it for the morning worship service. This would not be possible without the internet and would hinder us from being united as we are now. Also, we hold many zoom video teleconferencing calls with all the Zions on the east coast of the United States when we have educations or need to meet altogether. Thanks to God for allowing it to be so easy for us in this age of the Holy Spirit to be able to communicate with each other. How has technology hindered your spiritual development? Provide at least 2 specific examples. Technology has many benefits, but it also has some hindrances when it comes to our spiritual growth. This past summer, Washington DC Zion and all our branch churches held the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil Movement for about 6 weeks. During this time, we committed to using our smart phones only for the Gospel. We all came together and deleted the applications that are the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil for us. Each member already knew which applications these were, they are the ones we waste time using, or the ones that cause us to have a bad mindset. The primary apps the we deleted included Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, YouTube and Spotify. We replaced those useless apps with ones from our church, we have many apps available but many of us were not using them. During the movement we used our phones only to preach using the bible app or UCC videos as well as listen to video sermons on our church website. The movement was very successful and even gained the recognition of our head office in Korea. Thanks to God we turned what could easily become a hindrance in our faith into a tool to grow into better gospel workers that can preach the truth of our Heavenly Father and Mother to all people around the world. In this way, we found many of our lost brothers and sisters and led them out of the deception of satan and into the truth. Michael Cagnina Since Genesis EVERYTHING is new technology COLLAPSE I am puzzled. Why would any Christian view technology in a negative light? The Bible teaches us otherwise. There is no need to even cite a specific verse since at the beginning of the Bible there was literally nothing. From the perspective of the Bible EVERYTHING that has been invented is new technology. Just consider the advances in technology between Adam and Eve leaving the Garden of Eden and all the technological marvels at the Last Super for example…. let me think…I believe Jesus wore sandals, and a robe. He obviously had to have had a few haircuts. He drank from a cup, used fishing tools…from a boat, baked bread, served wine from a bottle and drank wine from a goblet…. all of which would have been technical marvels to Adam and Eve. Technology has enhanced my spiritual growth in a few noteworthy ways. I don’t absorb information well when someone speaks at me for an extended period of time, which is why I attend college online. Unfortunately, this also includes sitting through a sermon at church. Put me on a cardio machine at the gym and I can watch a sermon for an hour, put me in a pew for that same sermon and I’ll end up with my finger stuck in the holder for the empty communion wine containers. I take comfort in knowing I am not alone though…take slide shows or PowerPoint presentations for example. They are boring! “32% of people have fallen asleep during a PowerPoint presentation.” (Fleishman, 2014). While I don’t have research to support this, I feel a cardio elliptical machine may be a recent invention and wasn’t around when the Bible was created. From this perspective the technological advancement of a treadmill allows me to concentrate on a televised sermon for an hour where as prior to that I would not have been able to sit through it in its entirety. Portable electronic devices have also greatly improved not only how I consume scripture, it has also allowed the Bible to be translated and made available to an exponentially growing number of people across our planet. Taking a tablet to church allows readers with mature eyes to make the font larger than would otherwise be printed in a traditional Bible, allowing “even church members over 60 years old [to embrace] newer technologies both within their place of worship as well as at home.” (Richardson & Pardun, 2015). Consider “the first Bible to be printed in England was produced in 1535 by the royal printer…(POLEG, 2016) and it was printed in Latin which a common person could not read. Now consider “the YouVersion app, which offers more than 600 translations of the Bible in multiple languages, reached 100 million downloads in July 2013.” (Richardson & Pardun, 2015). Additionally, “the number of languages into which Scriptures have been translated quintupled in the last hundred years, numbering 2,850 in 2013, compared with 572 in 1914.” (Gerner, 2018). The first Bible printed in England in 1535 and the thousands of languages into which the Bible has been translated since have one thing in common, technology. In the case of the 1535 printing it was the Gutenberg printing press and in the case of the 2850 languages it was the Internet…both were huge technological leaps, and both continue to provide mass dissemination of the Bible, fellowship, church services even education. The worst technological advancement in our society today and a huge hindrance to spiritual growth, in my opinion, is social media, it allows speech without consequence and truly gives an outlet to the sin that was previously contained to just a person’s innermost thoughts. It’s a constant temptation and makes forget Proverbs 15:1 “A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.” The ease of access to the content of the Bible allows people who do not or will not take the time to understand the context of a Bible passage to misrepresent a verse in order to justify immoral or sinful behavior. For example, Matthew 7:1 “Judge not, that ye be judged” has been mis represented by some to suggest that the Bible discourages intolerance…even against behavior that is clearly sinful and immoral even though that interpretation is clearly contrary to what the Bible teaches us. (Pruitt, n. d.). References Fleishman, H. (2014, July 1). Why Your Presentations Are Putting People to Sleep. Retrieved October 21, 2018, from Gerner, M. (2018). Why worldwide bible translation grows exponentially. Journal of Religious History, 42(2), 145-180. doi:10.1111/1467-9809.12443 POLEG, E. (2016). The first bible printed in england: A little known witness from late henrician england. The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, 67(4), 760-780. doi:10.1017/S0022046916000658 Pruitt, S. (n. d.). The 5 Most Misused and Abused Bible Verses. Retrieved October 21, 2018, from Richardson, K. B., & Pardun, C. J. (2015). The new scroll digital devices, bible study and worship. Journal of Media and Religion, 14(1), 16-28. doi:10.1080/15348423.2015.1011984 John Anderson Forum 1 Biblical View of Technology COLLAPSE I am going to start this post a little backwards. We are given two questions, how has technology Helped and how has technology hindered our spiritual Growth. As this is a fairly personal section of information I wanted to start with how Technology has hindered my development Spiritually. How has Technology hindered your Spiritual Development? I was Raised as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. They ARE a Christian based religion but they tend to take things to different extremes from some other Christian based faiths. Growing up in the late 80s and early 90’s my father worked in the IT field and had a small computer repair and networking business. After he was in an accident I left high school and went to work full time for him. You might ask, how did this working with technology hinder your growth? Well, the Jehovah’s Witnesses have a hard line against college. They believe firmly that it introduces improper Ideas and takes away from time you should spend preaching and witnessing about God. I was literally sat down by Elders from my congregation and an overseer of several congregations and reminded of the importance of not furthering my education. While they felt it was good that I was working to support my family, I needed to find a way to move away from working in IT as I would certainly need to further my education. This hindered my growth because suddenly I was completely questioning the Doctrine I had been raised with. I KNEW God would want me to do everything I could to help my family, even if that meant furthering my education, but if I was wrong about that… What else was I wrong about? And if I was correct, Then what where the Elders I was told to respect also wrong about? This threw my entire Spiritual sense into a tail spin. Another way In which technology hindered my Spiritual Growth was in Confusion. While working in the technology field, the Internet became available to all. I was constantly hearing about the evils of the internet and the potential of hearing “ Other” ideas. Because the Christian group I was a member of truly believed that they were the only ones with the truth, my access to the internet very early in its life opened me up to new ideas that continued to force me to question my faith. Fortunately, technology in the form of the Internet Also opened up vista’s to me that helped lead in new directions. I will follow up with that in the next section. How has Technology helped facilitate your Spiritual Development? While the internet and new technologies may have been dangerous to the very Specific belief structure of the Jehovah’s witnesses, it did open up the world of Christianity to me more. Research on other religions was at my very fingertips. While I bounced around and studied everything from Buddhism to Mormonism, I also was able to read about and reach out to more traditional Christian beliefs such as Baptists and Methodists. I was recently doing some research on Questioning God and found a book that was basically a collection of notes from a symposium. (J. Dooley, M.Scanlon, M.J, 2001) Questioning God. A particular paragraph stuck out to me under the section Returning/Forgiving Ethics and Theology. Hosea 12:2 says “Return, Isreal, to the Lord” This paragraph speaks not just of repentance but of forgiveness. And not just forgiveness of yourself but of others. I found this through the internet. Without technology, I might not have read this book and felt the stronger grasp it enabled of me. The advent of Social media while fraught with danger has also allowed to me to find other former Jehovah’s witnesses and to connect with them, finding out there spiritual paths and to connect with those of other churches and religions and learn about other faiths. The one biggest factor I feel personally from this, is that the most important thing is a belief in God, not in your specific form of practice. Again, it was technology that helped me to get to this point. References Caputo, J. D., Dooley, M., & Scanlon, M. J. (2001). Questioning God. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Retrieved from nlebk&AN=66585&site=ehost-live&scope=site Grading Rubric Criteria Content 70% Demonstrates content mastery and a wellrounded understanding of the issue. Contributes to the overall discussion through relevant, substantive posts. Structure 30% APA, grammar, requirements, and spelling Advanced 90-100% 13 to 14 points All posts display clear content mastery, and relate precisely to the assigned topic. Posts are balanced in their approach to the topic, but provide evidence of a clear, wellresearched position on the topic that is rigorous, relevant, and scholarly in nature. 13 to 14 points Unique contributions are made to the discussion in both the original thread and at least three (3) responses to peers and excellent peer review exists using relevant supported scholarly journal articles. Accurate assistance is given to peers that align with the textbook and/or relevant scholarly research. Advanced 90-100% 11 to 12 points Correct spelling and grammar used. Posts contain fewer than 2 errors in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content and/or minimal errors (1-2) noted in the interpretation or execution of proper APA format. Word count of over 500 words for the initial thread and 200 words for each response (3+) that is of original authorship, relevant to the subject, and shows comprehension of the topic. Minimum of 2 unique and relevant scholarly peer reviewed journal articles for the initial thread and at least 1 scholarly journal article per each reply. Levels of Achievement Proficient 70-89% Developing 1-69% 12 points 1 to 11 points All posts are related to the assigned Posts are loosely related to the topic, topic, but do not provide evidence and/or marginally contribute to the of subject mastery and/or posts are development of the discussion and/or mostly balanced, but provide partial posts display a minimal or superficial evidence of a firm position derived understanding of the topic and/or from scholarly research relevant to posts show a clear bias, or do not the topic. provide a discernable position on the issue and/or evidence of relevant and current scholarly research is not present directly related to the topic. 12 points 1 to 11 points Contributions are made through an Contributions made are minimal, and initial thread and three (3) responses are derivative in nature and/or less to peers, but are definitional in than three (3) responses to peers nature and/or peer review exists and/or peer review exists using using relevant supported scholarly nominal supported scholarly journal journal articles and/or mostly articles and/or assistance is given that accurate assistance is given to peers does not align with the textbook that align with the textbook and/or and/or relevant scholarly research. relevant scholarly research. Proficient 70-89% 10 points Posts contain fewer than 4 errors in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content and/or few errors (3-4) noted in the interpretation or execution of proper APA format and/or is within 10% of the number of relevant scholarly journal articles and/or within 10% of the requirements of word count of over 500 words for the initial thread and 200 words for each response (3+) that is of original authorship, relevant to the subject, and shows comprehension of the topic. Developing 1-69% 1 to 9 points Posts contain fewer than 8 errors in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content and/or numerous errors (5+) noted in the interpretation or execution of proper APA format and/or is within 20% of the number of relevant scholarly journal articles and/or within 20% of the word count of over 500 words for the initial thread and 200 words for each response (3+) that is of original authorship, relevant to the subject, and shows comprehension of the topic. Not present 0 points Does not provide evidence of subject mastery. 0 points Contributions to the discussion are nominal. Not present 0 points Posts contain greater than 8 errors in grammar or spelling that distract the reader from the content and/or significant absences in required APA formatting exists and/or posts are not within 20% of the required word count of over 500 words for the initial thread and 200 words for each response (3+) that is of original authorship, relevant to the subject, and shows comprehension of the topic and/or within 20% of the number of relevant scholarly journal articles. Total Points
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Reply to Yohannes Anbese

Dear Anbese,
It is a fact that technology is a double-edged sword that cuts both sides. It can be used for personal
Christian development, and it can also be dangerous to spiritual growth when not put in check.
Technology is the use of modern computerized or mechanized methodology of performing a task.
As every sector in the world uses it, Christians have also not been left behind in this journey, and
the use of technology has favored as well as hindered spiritual growth.
I am glad that the use of technology has made you receive a plethora of information from the
internet and also have the easier accessibility of biblical content. However, this might also be a
problem to you without your attention as you may receive the wrong interpretation of...

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