03 June 2005

Nixon's the One

Johnson's the Other One

Apropos of everything we have talked about so far, my longtime friend and former co-worker Joost Nixon has good advice for me:
Blogging is governed by the same biblical principles that govern our speech. This seems obvious, but to read the blogs of many young turks, they either don't get it, or they refuse to bridle their tongues. Blogs can be used for great good, but like any speech, it must be bridled in order to bring grace to those who hear.

Godly blogging begins with the right metaphor. Many young bloggers write as though they are scribbling ugly secrets into their private diaries. Because their blog-thoughts are just them "thinking out loud," they think their grumbling lawful—as if our thought-lives aren't under the Lord's dominion1. The fact that the "diary" metaphor is faulty only multiplies the destruction of sinful speech. Blogging is a form of diarizing, but one written expressly for others to read—or else why the public forum? But blogging is like reading one's diary over NPR. Bloggers should reflect on whether they really want such a public forum. My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment (Jas. 3:1).

If you have a blog, don't take yourself too seriously. Few people—even those "struggling with low self-esteem"—really think more lowly of themselves than they ought to think. The opposite sin, however, is pandemic (Rom. 12:3).

The rest of his article, "Blogitelling" (from a recent issue of Credenda Agenda), is equally compelling. Well worth a careful read.

Joost's website, St. Anne's Public House is one of the more upscale virtual establishments.


John said...

Congratulations Phil, on winning the WARNIE! Welcome to the elite of bloggers. :)

I linked it at...



Jared said...

That is a great essay. I've posted excerpts from it twice before at The Thinklings, posting it under the title "Blogging Like a Follower of Jesus." The last time I shared it, as if trying to prove the point, several commenters went all haywire about "criticism" and what-not. They were so committed to their critical spirit, they couldn't see the value of applying the biblical principles of love and speech to our online activities.

Anyways -- thanks for the reminder, Phil.

Andrew said...

Nixon got it exactly right! There are too many "deep throats" out there in the blogosphere.

Brian Mann said...

I agree, Proverbs 29:11 ESV says A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back.

Uncialman said...

Finally a blog whose name is not a latin theological phrase!

Scott Aniol said...

This reminds me of hymn writing. Many modern hymns sound like a guy "diarizing" when the author forgets he should be writing for public consumption!

Brad Huston said...

Phil, Your posts strike me as bit defensive now that you're here in the blogosphere, but welcome nonetheless....though it's not like you're really a newbie....wait, a minute I'm the newbie... Ok, I'm going to be quiet now.


Sled Dog said...

How in the world does a blog win an award when it has only been in existence for one week?

Habitans in Sicco said...

Sleddog: You have to be witty, creative, interesting, and insightful.