An extract from Malcolm’s Sunday evening talk (26th March) on Galatians 6:1…

“Keeping to the principle of gentleness, one area that really concerns me at the moment is that people who are gentle face to face, can, knowingly or unknowingly, lack gentleness online, especially on Facebook.

It’s as if we are tempted to believe we don’t have to be equally gentle on the internet. We feel its OK to write whatever we  like, to express strong opinions, have a rant, have a moan, criticise others, whether about church, other Christians, politics or whatever.

At its worst, we can mistakenly think that provoking a strong reaction is just fine, upsetting others is all part of good debate and getting into heated arguments is acceptable even if it causes division between Christians in a local church.

I think especially  during such a politically unstable time we need to be ultra-sensitive online. No rants or attacks on others’ positions! No divisive words or links to other polarising articles.

No – you should write everything – from Facebook to an email, through the grid of the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ (Gal 5 :22-23) especially making sure it’s marked by gentleness.

If you can’t see the fruit of the Spirit in your writing – don’t post it!

And if someone you read is not doing that, not being gentle, then you should choose to unfollow them  as it won’t help them to have an audience, or help you, as it will damage you as you get involved or react.

 Galatians  5:15 if you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you’ll be destroyed by each other so I say walk by the spirit…

Gentleness should  be the key to how we communicate on line, offline, in church and in life.”

Listen to the whole talk here. Keeping in Step with the Spirit – Malcolm Round