You, Your Family and the Internet

What every Christian in the digital age ought to know

The book is written to help Christians better understand the dangers and opportunities offered by the Internet. Each chapter explains and illustrate key technologies and then draws on Biblical principles to help us better understand both dangers and opportunities. Each chapter includes questions for discussion. The book sets out to avoid being philosophical about Internet technologies, or to predicts where the technologies might lead us. In my view, based on many years in the industry, such predictions are usually wrong! The approach is one that is pragmatic, noting where we are, providing some insights into how we got there, then applying Biblical principles so that we can move forward.

Two sample chapters are included below

  • Foreword by Dr. Joel Beeke
  • Chapter 10 - News and Views

  • Chapters (click to expand)
    Chap 1 - Introduction
    An overview of the book.

    Chap 2 - So What?
    With the advent of the Internet (or the information age) what has really changed? You will be surprised by why has not changed, and what (or should I say who) has changed...

    Chap 3 - The Bad, the Good, and a Dose of History
    What is the Internet, and a first look at what dangers it brings as well as some opportunities it offers?

    Chap 4 - Communication
    How has the Internet has changed we communicate? From texts, to email and tweets. When considering our 24/7 society, we need to remind ourselves of the key principles of self-control, selflessness and service...

    Chap 5 - Facebook and the Social Network Revolution
    Read the chapter for yourself. Click on the link above...

    Chap 6 - Pornography
    Did you know that the online pornography industry generates some $10B per year? The Internet presents some real dangers in this area, by giving us easy access from the (supposed) privacy of our own computer. We include some practical advice to help those who are tempted. Pornography ruins lives as this testimony illustrates:

    I go to work, I go to school, and I spend time with my family. The people around me don’t know that I’m a shell of a person. They don’t have a clue that I don’t feel my life is worth living ... I grew more and more consumed by looking at pornography on the Internet for hours on end ... I grew more and more angry at the world ... There’s no way to undo it now. The only thing that numbs the pain digs me that much deeper into the hole ... I have ruined my life, and I did it one day at a time as I sat down in front of my computer yet again.

    Chap 7 - If it's free, then you are the product
    Ever wondered why things are 'free' on the Internet? Heard the phrase “Google knows everything”? Ever worried about identity theft or what website owners can do with your information? Then this chapter is for you...

    Chap 8 - Internet Games
    Are Internet games just a bit of fun, a useful pastime or are they addictive and can they promote antisocial and at time addictive behavior? From Farmville to World of Warcraft, this chapter explores these issues.

    Chap 9 - Internet Gambling
    Online gambling is all about making money — a lot of money. While statistics are difficult to find, since much of what happens online is unregulated, one estimate suggests revenues of $27B (£17B) worldwide in 2009 rising to $36B (£22B) by 2012. That is more than the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of 70% of the countries in the world. Internet gambling is also addictive, particularly since it is so easy to place a bet from your computer. So what should we do about it?

    Chap 10 - News and Views
    The Internet is radically changing the way we get our news. We are also no longer just passive recipients of news; we can now provide feedback, opinions and complete instant surveys. Does this make a difference to the way we view and filter the news?

    Chap 11 - Five Principles to Learn From
    In this chapter we look at five key Biblical principles that we can apply to protect ourselves and our families against the worst dangers of the Internet.

    Chap 12 - Five Principles to Run With
    In the final chapter, we conclude with five principles that can be used to make the most of the opportunities that the Internet offers. One of them may surprise you...