I’ve often wondered if early Christianity — or any early religion — would have survived anything remotely resembling the immediacy of the information age.
Would the early apostles have played as well on the Internet as they did on foot 2,000 years ago?
Because faith is predicated as much on what we don’t know as it is on what we think we do, it’s hard to imagine early religions enduring widespread and immediate public access to their beginnings.
Can you imagine the Lord with a Facebook page? Somehow I just can’t picture him posting the Beatitudes and hoping for a bunch of “Likes.” You can imagine the comments.
“Stop leading people astray.” Ralph Sanhedrin
“My husband is dead. Could you stop by on your way to Jerusalem?” Mrs. Lazarus
“The caterer completely messed up our wine order. Hope to see you at the wedding.” Zacharias Gallo
If this sounds a bit (or a lot) sacrilegious, it’s also exactly the way the news spread about Christianity in the early years. Do you honestly think people back then talked the way the Bible is written?
Worse for religions would be brevity. It’s one thing to read the concepts in crushing length in a sacred book and another to get them preached at you in 140 characters or less.
Would the Apostle Paul have effectively delivered the good news by tweeting the Corinthians (and everyone else) instead of writing epistles?
“I’m really tired of listening to women in church. They need to shut up.”
Where would the world be today if other religious figures had tweeted their philosophies and beliefs instead of having them groomed and put into book form hundreds of years later?
Martin Luther • “I was going to nail some theses to the door of the church, but I’ll post them in a chat room instead.”
Buddha • “Trying to score some serious enlightenment, so I left my wife and son.”
Peter • “Wasn’t me. I didn’t know the guy. Nobody can prove that I did.”
Judas Iscariot • “Want to earn some extra pieces of silver? Check out my website at www.goingtohell.666. It works.”
Brigham Young • “I’m getting married on Monday. Also Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday. And two more times next week.
John • “Totally tripping when I wrote the Book of Revelation. Sorry about that.”
Moses • “If the cops are chasing you, drive into the ocean. It totally worked for me and some friends.”
Joseph Smith • “You guys are not going to believe what happened at the foot of my bed last night.”
Noah • “The weather bites but I’m taking my wife and a few pets on a cruise. See you losers later. Not.”
Abraham • “Isaac and I are going for a walk in the hills and we don’t want to be disturbed.”
King David • “I saw the most awesome woman. Lucky for me her husband is being deployed. Ha-ha.”
Eve • “Talked to a snake yesterday. I think it went rather well. I’ll tweet the fruit salad recipe later.”
Adam • “Feeling really exposed right now, like I forgot my pants. Weird.”
Satan • “If you’re reading this stuff, your soul belongs to me.”
Robert Kirby can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or facebook.com/stillnotpatbagley.