Summary: Part 3 focuses on the tablet Chjristian - one who places a lot of restrictions on how to be a Christian.
Desktop Computer Christians Part 3
Tablet Computer Christians
Scriptures: Matt. 15:1-9; Matthew 23
This morning I will continue with part 3 of my series I’ve titled “Desktop Computer Christians” by focusing on tablet computer Christian.
As you recall from my first two sermons, the primary difference between a desktop computer Christian and a laptop computer Christian was the laptop computer Christian’s ability to fulfill the commission that Jesus has called all of us to – to go out and make disciples of all nations. The desktop computer Christians do not make God an active part of their everyday life and keep Him assigned to Sundays and/or other religious services/places. They do not strive to be able to know enough about God’s word as that is something that should be left for those who are actually “called” into ministry work. The laptop computer Christian has a different perspective on how God interacts with Christians. They believe that God is active on a daily basis with all of His children versus just those called into ministry work. They believe it is their responsibility to know God but more important, to represent Him to the world. They are not ashamed of Him and do not believe that we should only interact with God on Sundays. That being said, there is still yet another type of Christian that exists in the world today – the tablet computer Christian. For this message I am using the term “tablet” to refer to computers such as the iPad.
The first tablet computer and the associated special operating system (pen computing technology) go all the way back to 1888 when the first patent for an electronic tablet used for handwriting was granted. The first patent that recognized handwritten characters was issued in 1915. The first publicly demonstrated system using a tablet and handwriting recognition instead of a keyboard for working dates back to 1956. Development of the tablet computer continued through the 1980s and in 1987 Apple Computer started its tablet project. In 2010, Apple introduced its first iPad. The iPad placed restrictions on the owner to install software thus deviating it from the PC tradition and its attention to detail for the tough interface defined it as a new class of portable computer devices. Since the iPad’s introduction, other companies have developed their own versions of the tablet computer but one thing has remained constant – there are restrictions on the owner to install software to the device. So let’s examine this more closely as it relates to Christians.
Everyone who owns an iPad or similar tablet computer understands the need for “apps”. With the iPad, in order to get the most out of it, you must download apps that allow you to do whatever it is you desire to do. Even though there are thousands of apps available to choose from each one of those apps have been pre-screened and pre-approved by Apple. If Apple did not like the app then it would never be available for an iPad’s owner to download. While this is thought to be a positive benefit for the purchaser as it protects the purchasers from dangerous apps that could do harmful things with their personal data, it also acts as a filter as it restricts what people have access to limiting their freedom to purchase what they choose. Unlike the first two messages in this series, this morning I will focus on the restrictions component as we examine the tablet computer Christian. Turn with me to Matthew 15:1-9.
“(1) Then some Pharisees and scribes came to Jesus from Jerusalem and said, (2) “Why do Your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.” (3) And He answered and said to them, “Why do you yourselves transgress the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition? (4) “For God said, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and, ‘He who speaks evil of father or mother is to be put to death.’ (5) “But you say, ‘Whoever says to his father or mother, “Whatever I have that would help you has been given to God,” (6) he is not to honor his father or his mother.’ And by this you invalidated the word of God for the sake of your tradition. (7) “You hypocrites, rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you: (8) ‘This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far away from Me. (9) ‘But in vain do they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the precepts of men.’ ” Matthew 15:1-9 (NASB)
The Pharisees were at various times a political party; a social movement; and a school of thought among Jews and it was the latter which often caused Jesus to be in conflict with them. After the destruction of the Second Temple, the Pharisaic beliefs became the liturgical (how public worship/ceremonies would be done) and ritualistic (rituals of behaviors) for Rabbinic Judaism. Their rituals became more important than the Old Testament teachings and were in constant conflict with what Christ taught. This is what Jesus was addressing in this Scripture. Jesus said that they transgressed the commandments of God by choosing instead to follow their own traditions. Let’s examine what they did.