I remember the conflicting feelings I had 12 years ago as I started to work for a Christian TV station. I remember the encouragement I got from seeing others in the worldwide Body of Christ built up with solid Christian teaching and was also pleased by the way that TV was an effective way to break down walls within the church. People who would never darken the door of a church from another denomination would watch them on TV and see that perhaps their perception of the church was wrong. This was a good thing. The conflict I had was over the lack of community. There is a very real possibility for an individual to “accept Jesus” by “saying the prayer” along with the Teleevangelist and actually have a real spiritual experience on their own, and yet still hold a hatred towards that group of hypocrites called the church.
I believe that many people have been touched by God through TV ministry. As we have pressed ahead with technology with websites, webstreaming, internet applications and video conferencing there is also a great opportunity to reach an ever widening audience over the internet with the glorious gospel of God. However as with TV, new media faces the same challenges, it brings us together and also isolates us more and more. It is possible for us to “love Jesus” but hate the hypocrites who claim to be his family. It is possible in theory only however for John the Apostle tells us “Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness.” God is not coming back for a harem, he is coming back for a bride. He is passionate for his Body upon the earth as his representative, it is therefore impossible for us to love Jesus and hate the church. As disciples of Jesus we are born again INTO the New Covenant people of God, there is no other way. And in actual fact dealing with the people of God, weak and broken people just like us on the road of sanctification is our God given way of getting sanctified.
So as we press forward with new technologies as believers I am encouraged to see teaching and worship go out, but I am warned that we need to embrace technology only as far as it builds up the New Covenant people of God and need to quick to reject those technologies that tear it down.