Avoid the Pursuit of “Valueless Things”
1 One popular means of communication today is E-mail. Although sharing personal experiences and thoughts among family and friends through this medium may be appropriate, what “valueless things” can be associated with the unrestricted use of E-mail?—Prov. 12:11.
2 Cautions Regarding E-Mail: Some claim to feel more in touch with Jehovah’s organization when they receive what they consider to be fresh information via E-mail. This may include experiences, notes on events at Bethel, reports of disasters or persecution, and even confidential information released at Kingdom Ministry Schools. Others seem overly eager to send such messages, hoping to be the first to reveal the information to their friends.
3 At times, information and experiences have been distorted or exaggerated. Or perhaps in an effort to be sensational, some have conveyed a false impression. Those who are hasty to reveal such matters often do not have all the facts. (Prov. 29:20) In some cases, even when a story is unbelievable, it is passed on as a curiosity. Such inaccurate or misleading reports amount to “false stories,” which do not promote genuine godly devotion.—1 Tim. 4:6, 7.
4 If you forward information that turns out to be inaccurate, you bear a measure of responsibility for the sorrow or confusion this can cause. When David received an exaggerated report that all his sons had been killed, he “ripped his clothes apart” in anguish. However, in truth, only one of his sons had died. That was distressing enough, but this exaggeration caused David added distress. (2 Sam. 13:30-33) Surely we would not want to do anything that would mislead or discourage any of our brothers.
5 God’s Appointed Channel: Bear in mind that our heavenly Father has an appointed channel of communication, “the faithful and discreet slave.” That “slave” has the responsibility to determine what information is made available to the household of faith, as well as “the proper time” for it to be dispensed. This spiritual food is available only through the theocratic organization. We should always look to God’s appointed channel for reliable information, not to a network of Internet users.—Matt. 24:45.
6 Internet Web Sites: We have an official Internet Web site: www.watchtower.org. This site is adequate to make information available to the public. There is no need for any individual, committee, or congregation to prepare a Web page about Jehovah’s Witnesses. Some have posted the contents of our publications with all scriptures and references given in full and have even offered copies of convention material on a donation basis. Whether profit is involved or not, the practice of reproducing and distributing publications of Jehovah’s Witnesses in an electronic document is a violation of copyright laws. While some may view this as a service to the brothers, it is not approved and should be discontinued.
7 Exercising good judgment and soundness of mind when using electronic communication will ensure that our minds are filled with “precious and pleasant things of value.”—Prov. 24:4.