Ever since the leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints started to encourage the church's members to have a more active presence on the Internet, share their beliefs and testimonies, and be an influence for good online, it seems that a large portion of well-behaved members have grossly misinterpreted this charge.
Instead of being shining examples of Jesus Christ, the posts in my news feed over the past few years appear more like they are written by tyrannical Pharisees who feel the need to jump right into the powder keg of emotionally charged political and socially controversial topics in order to "defend the faith" and "promote good."
The sad part is that the mud that these "good people" sling is only distinguishable from the rest of mud flying around from the mainstream media by its particularly potent stench of hypocrisy and it's ability to wound the broken-hearted and down trodden as it is flung in the name of "Christ"!
These "Christian" Internet crusaders take a stand through their posts in the name of God in ways that are not only offensive, judgmental, and rude, but also in the most unChristlike tone.
Gay Marriage becomes legal in a state, they feel the need to "Share" the Proclamation on the family to remind everyone that they feel homosexuality is a sin. A transgender person makes the cover of a magazine, and they choose to share a dissertation about how transgender people have mental illness and throw in the family proclamation to justify their opinions as being those of Jesus Christ's! Popular Bloggers, feminists, or those whose opinions differ from the Official Church Rhetoric are excommunicated and these people feel compelled to remind everyone how those who express differing opinions are apostates and deserve to be "cut off" from God. Never in my life have I seen so much mud thrown in the name of God, Church, and defending beliefs, as I have in the past 10 years! And the sad part is, it is only increasing and the mud is hardening into stone!
In John Chapter 8 we read:
3 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a taken in and when they had set her in the midst,
4 They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.
5 Now Moses in the commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?
And the mainstream media brought unto "them" a transgender on the cover of vogue, a homosexual couple adopting a child, a community of Muslims desiring to build a mosque, or whatever potential story or principle which is out of harmony with your particular religious beliefs.
6 This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger on the ground, as though he heard them not.
7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without among you, let him cast a at her.
8 And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground.
9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
Never has the age old adage "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all" been more applicable than in this day and age where it's easier to throw the stones of judgement and condemnation in relative anonymity from behind our computer screens. We don't even have to view the damage they cause or the harm they do.
10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I thee: go, and sin more.
A true Christian believes that the ONLY one with the right to judge is Christ and we may well be surprised that he is a lot more understanding and forgiving than we mere mortals tend to be.
So, instead of wallowing in the mud and stirring the controversy in order to get more clicks, what SHOULD we be doing if we want to follow the counsel of Church leaders to flood the Internet with "Good"?
The official Church Handbook states:
"Members are encouraged to use the Internet to flood the earth with testimonies of the Savior and His restored gospel. They should view blogs, social networks, and other Internet technologies as tools that allow them to amplify their voice in promoting the messages of peace, hope, and joy that accompany faith in Christ."