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SELFIE- Jan 5

January 5, 2015

“The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.” Genesis 2:9b

I don’t really understand the preoccupation with “selfies”. I scroll through Facebook and I am amazed at the number of pictures that my “friends” post just of themselves, taken by themself. I read this article, Why we really take selfies: The terrifying reasons.

Dr Terri Apter, psychology lecturer at Cambridge University, says taking selfies is all about people trying to figure out who they are and project this to other people. “It’s a kind of self-definition,” says Dr Apter. “We all like the idea of being sort of in control of our image and getting attention, being noticed, being part of the culture.”

However, I wonder if it isn’t a manifestation of something more. The reality is that we all like to get attention, be noticed, and  be  part of our culture, but have you stopped to wonder why?

Why do I want attention?
Why am I posting a picture of myself?

Consider the immediate response after ingesting the knowledge of good and evil:

Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. (Genesis 3:7)

Nakedness in the Old Testament suggests weakness, need and humiliation (Deut. 28:48, Job 1:21, Isa. 58:7) The impact of receiving this mysterious knowledge was an awareness of self. Before they ate of the fruit, Adam and Eve were not even aware that they were naked. It was not that they were comfortable with their bodies. They were blind to their nakedness.

I have no idea what that could be like.
I have never been naked and did not know it.
In fact, I have rarely, if ever, been unaware of myself.

The knowledge of good and evil causes everyone to function on a basis of self awareness. It is an awareness particularly of our deficiencies. We know the difference between good and evil and we can see it in ourselves. As a result, this awareness drives us in pursuit of selfish desires, often absent is a compassionate consideration of our impact on others.

I wonder if the phenomenon of “selfies”
is just another manifestation of original sin.

If they had the technology, I don’t think Adam and Eve would have been taking “selfies” prior to the fall. After all, they would not have had any place to carry their cell phones but more importantly, I don’t see a person, unaware of himself, being inclined to take a “selfie”.

Now, I don’t want to be a curmudgeon.

However, I think that it is always good to evaluate why we do what we do. It is important to hunt out all the secret ways we feed our desires for self.

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We just might be feeding our sinful appetite for self one selfie at a time. 

PRAYER: Father, you know how much I love myself.  Forgive me of all the ways that I seek praise and attention from the world.   Forgive me for seeking my self-worth above yours and others.  Lord, help be to think less of myself.  Father, I give you all my nakedness.  I give you all my failures and deficiencies.  Help me to no longer seek to cover them.  Help me to forget myself. I pray this in the precious name of your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen

3 comments

  1. As a ‘just say no-er’ to selfies, I love this! I’m not terribly opposed to them, it just seems so incredibly centered on, well, self. I’m self-centered enough without adding photos into the mix.

    Interesting psychology to it…I think there is something to that. Excellent post!


  2. I think you may be right…. Thanks


  3. A really great devotion! Fantastic. Great insight and a great word – thanks for sharing!



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