"As newborn babes, desire the sincere (pure) milk of the word,
that you may grow thereby" 1 Peter 2:2 King James Bible
Bible Study "Milk" Section
“…only in the Lord.”
1 Corinthians 7:39
歌林 多 前 書 7:39 …是 要 嫁 这 在 主 里 面 的 人 。
1 Corinthians 7:39 “The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth;
but if her husband be dead,
she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.”
歌林 多 前 書 7:39 “丈 夫 活 着 的 时 候 ， 妻 子 是 被 约 束 的 ;丈 夫 若 死 了 ,妻 子 就 可 以 自 由 ,随 意 再 嫁 ， 只 是 要 嫁 这 在 主 里 面 的 人 .”
There are commands in God’s Word, the Bible, to be obeyed,
no compromise, no negotiation.
This is a command from God to be obeyed, it is very direct and simple, easy to read and see. It is for believers in the Lord Jesus, for both sisters and brothers to obey. Christians are commanded by God to only marry believers! 1 Corinthians 7:39 God clearly and directly commands Christians to marry “only in the Lord.”
2 Corinthians 6:14 “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?”
歌林 多 後 書 6:14 “你 们 和 不 信 的 原 不 相 配 ， 不 要 同 负 一 轭 。 义 和 不 义 有 甚 麽 相 交 呢 ？
光 明 和 黑 暗 有 甚 麽 相 通 呢 “？God again says not to be “bound together” with unbelievers, not to have “partnership” with them (this would include business dealings too) and not to “fellowship” with them. But of course, one should witness to unbelievers. but not as boyfriend girlfriend relationship. If you have an unbelieving friend, you certainly can witness to them, but never become a boy-girlfriend relationship. Such a relationship is not going anywhere good with an unbeliever. It only allows the Devil to use that unbeliever to destroy your life. The Old Testament teaches this very clearly, which I will show you later.
Recently though I have found that even Christian leaders in China and the West are both denying the simplicity and directness of this command, that is, though they may agree it means only marry a believer they will still not discourage the relationship and/or perform the marriage ceremony for a mixed marriage, a believer and unbeliever. Some may say it is not the best marriage relationship, but one can do it. Such lies these preachers promote. This is disobedience to God’s command, marry “only in the Lord.” May God be merciful.
When you die,
you will go to the Judgment Seat of Christ to which all Christians must appear,
2 Corinthians 5:10 “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” 歌 林 多 後 書 5:10 “因 为 我 们 众 人 必 要 在 基 督 ? 前 显 露 出 来 ， 叫 各 人 按 着 本 身 所 行 的 ， 或 善 或 恶 受 报 .” God will rightly bring forth His judgment on all unconfessed disobedience, there will be a loss and it could easily result in the loss of entering and ruling in the future Kingdom of Christ on earth, which is the reason why man was created.
Marriage is important and God has commands regarding it.
But marriage is not the goal of a believer’s life.
Marriage is not the primary issue in life.
1 Corinthians 7:29 “But this I say, brethren, the time is short, so that from now on,
that both they that have wives be as though they had none;”
歌林 多 前 書 7:29 “弟 兄 们 ， 我 对 你 们 说 ， 时 候 减 少 了 。 从 此 以 後 ， 那 有 妻 子 的 ， 要 像 没 有 妻 子 ;”
but ruling in the future Kingdom of Christ on earth is the first and foremost goal of life!
Chinese sisters are continually disobeying God’s Word, dating and marrying unbelieving men. And when a sister or brother marries an unbeliever, God will immediately discipline them and spiritual growth stops or is stunted for life. It is very, very difficult to overcome the negative results of purposely disobeying a direct, easy to understand command of God. Sometimes one will never overcome the negative consequences of directly, pridefully, sinning against the Lord by marrying an unbeliever.
Believing Christ as Savior is the most important decision in life, but who one marries is typically understood to be the second most important decision. Believing Christ determines one’s eternal destiny and who one marries effects one’s entire life on earth. Both are major decisions.
One should never get married thinking divorce will never occur. Divorce can always occur in marriage. It only takes one mate in marriage to divorce and the other mate has little or nothing they can do about it. Love does not force the mate to stay, if they want to leave. Divorce rates continue to go up in China. So be forewarned, you marry you may end up divorced.
People are always changing for better or worse and certainly a mate can change their commitment, if they even ever had one, and divorce. So never marry unless you are willing to be divorced. God created man with a free will to choose to obey or not, and He lost man, gave him a second opportunity by dying on the Cross for man, but God still loses some. So if God can “lose” some men to unbelief, surely small man can lose a mate in marriage to divorce. Something to think about.
What is your goal in life?
Chinese goals in life are to make money, get a job and car, get married, have children,
have a family and so on.
Psalms 17:14 “From men with Your hand, O Lord, From men of the world,
whose portion is in this life, And whose belly You fill with Your treasure;
They are satisfied with children, And leave their abundance to their babes.”
詩篇 17:14 “耶 和 华 啊 ,求 你 用 手 救 我 脱 离 世 人 ,脱 离 那 只 在 今 生 有 福 分 的 世 人 ！ 你 把 你 的 财 宝 充 满 他 们 的 肚 腹 ;他 们 因 有 儿 女 就 心 满 意 足 ,将 其 馀 的 财 物 留 给 他 们 的 婴 孩 .”
Children are not the true satisfaction in life.
Marriage is not the true satisfaction in life.
God created marriage for a purpose, but it was not created to satisfy all of your needs.
Isaiah 54:4-6 “4 Fear not; for thou shalt not be ashamed:…..
and shalt not remember the reproach of thy widowhood any more.
5 For thy Maker is thine husband; the Lord of hosts is his name;
and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel;
The God of the whole earth shall he be called.
6 For the Lord hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit,
and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God.”
以賽 亞 書 54:4-6 “4 不 要 惧 怕 ， 因 你 必 不 致 蒙 羞 ； 也 不 要 抱 愧 ， 因 你 必 不 致 受 辱 。 你 必 忘 记 幼 年 的 羞 愧 ， 不 再 记 念 你 寡 居 的 羞 辱 。5 因 为 造 你 的 是 你 的 丈 夫 ； 万 军 之 耶 和 华 是 他 的 名 。 救 赎 你 的 是 以 色 列 的 圣 者 ； 他 必 称 为 全 地 之 神 。6 耶 和 华 召 你 ， 如 召 被 离 弃 心 中 忧 伤 的 妻 ， 就 是 幼 年 所 娶 被 弃 的 妻 。 这 是 你 神 所 说 的 。”
There are many other verses teaching against what Chinese traditionally think is important.
Luke 18:29 “And Jesus said to them, Truly I say to you,
there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children,
for the sake of the kingdom of God,”
路加 福 音 18:29 “耶 稣 说 : 我 实 在 告 诉 你 们 , 人 为 神 的 国 撇 下 房 屋 ,
或是 妻 子 ,弟 兄 ,父 母 ,儿 女 ,”
Matthew 19:29, Mark 10:29, all spoken by the Lord while on earth, and 1 Corinthians 7:29.
Chinese traditional goals for life are not God’s goal for your life!
God’s goal for your life is found in these words,
Psalms 17:15 “As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied,
when I awake, with thy likeness.”
Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;
& all these things shall be added unto you.”
詩篇 17:15 “至 於 我 ， 我 必 在 义 中 见 你 的 面 ； 我 醒 了 的 时 候 ， 得 见 （ 或 译 ： 着 ） 你 的 形 像 就 心 满 意 足 了 .” 馬 太 福 音 6:33 “你 们 要 先 求 他 的 国 和 他 的 义 ， 这 些 东 西 都 要 加 给 你 们 了 。”
If God wants you to marry, which typically happens, then He will provide a believing mate for you at the right time and place, until then you seek the Lord, His Righteousness. Kingdom and know Him better and better for this is the reason God created you,
then you will be satisfied in life.
Now what about Dating?
Please remember, God’s Word is the standard for our life. We do not live by Chinese culture or traditions. God has His own culture, His way for us to live, His thinking, doing and feeling, which is the best way for us, the most joyful and satisfying. There is no where in the Bible God commands dating. Dating is unbelieving man’s method for whatever reasons. People date for many reasons, to have a good time, play, eat and talk, look for a person to go to bed with, whether for one night or many.
But dating, if it occurs, should only be for one specific purpose, that is, two people are Christians, both are seeking the Lord, His Righteousness, and His Kingdom, and are interested in getting married to one another. One should never date a person that they are not intending to marry. Did you read that? One should never date a person that they are not intending to marry.
Dating just to date has no goal or direction and most times ends with bad results. The Devil will surely use the unbeliever to destroy a Christian’s life. The Devil is a Thief and the Thief only has one purpose to steal, kill and destroy a believer’s life. John 10:10 “The thief comes only to steal, and kill, and destroy; I (Jesus) came that they (you) might have life, and might have it in abundance.”
There is no abundant living in an unbeliever. I have never yet met an unbeliever that has a high quality of life. Unbelievers live a very low quality of life. As an unbeliever I was also living a low quality of life. They can not answer correctly the important questions of life. Since they have no understanding of real life, they have no good meaning, direction, or purpose in life. And the Devil can easily use them, since they live in darkness and in the Devil’s kingdom, to destroy Christians lives. There are millions of stories like this and you will just be another Bad Story as you spend unrighteous time with an unbeliever in a boy-girlfriend relationship.
There are many ways for sisters and brothers to meet and get to know one another beyond dating. Christians should be committed to a local church and Biblically function in the church. This would be a typical way for Christians to meet. A good local church is one that is unknown and with good teaching. Very difficult to find such a local church.
When it is God’s time for a sister and brother to meet for marriage, He will bring them together. Until that time a person should be growing and functioning in their own home with the parents teaching them how to live life. Also the local church has its own life, and Christians should be growing in the Lord and functioning in the local church.
Now I realize all the problems society has today. Parents are separated and divorced, families only have one child and so no siblings to relate to, children live with their grandparents, no love or training from their parents or grandparents, maybe no local church to be a part of, poor teaching and leadership in a local church and so on. These are very real problems. This message is not directed to answer these problems.
Remember God says
Ephesians 5:8 “for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord;
walk as children of Light”
Colossians 1:13 “For He rescued us from the domain of darkness,
and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son(which is in the Light,
there is NO darkness in God or in His Kingdom),”
以弗 所 書 5:8 ‘从 前 你 们 是 暗 昧 的 ， 但 如 今 在 主 里 面 是 光 明 的 ， 行 事 为 人 就 当 像 光 明 的 子 女 .” 歌 羅 西 書 1:13 “他 救 了 我 们 脱 离 黑 暗 的 权 势 ， 把 我 们 迁 到 他 爱 子 的 国 里 ；”
Ephesians 5:8 clearly teaches that all men live in darkness, in Satan’s Kingdom, until they believe in Jesus Christ as their Savior. As Christians we become “Light in the Lord” and are to walk in the Light of the Lord. But this verse also shows that Christians can live in disobedience and darkness. Believers who disobey God, date and marry unbelievers. walk in darkness.
If God gives a command to believers to obey, then the believer can also disobey that command. If believers can not disobey commands, then we have become robots only doing what we have been programmed to do. But that is not true. God has saved us to be free from Satan’s Kingdom and has given us freedom to obey Him and His commands. Love does not force anyone to do something they do not want to do. God has given believers a free will to obey or disobey, know God or not to know God, love God or not to love God. Loving God means obeying God. There is a great difference between believing Jesus Christ as your Savior AND growing up in Christ, knowing and loving God, obeying His commands.
1 John 2:3-6 “By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. 4 The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; 5 but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: 6 the one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.”
約翰 一 書 2:3-6 “3 我 们 若 遵 守 他 的 诫 命 ， 就 晓 得 是 认 识 他 。4 人 若 说 我 认 识 他 ， 却 不 遵 守 他 的 诫 命 ， 便 是 说 谎 话 的 ， 真 理 也 不 在 他 心 里 了 。5 凡 遵 守 主 道 的 ， 爱 神 的 心 在 他 里 面 实 在 是 完 全 的 。 从 此 我 们 知 道 我 们 是 在 主 里 面 。6 人 若 说 他 住 在 主 里 面 ， 就 该 自 己 照 主 所 行 的 去 行 .”
Again, you may believe in a person, but you may not know them. This is just a fact of life.
It takes time to know people and it takes time to know God,
in fact, we will get to know God through all eternity.
There is a difference between the Free Gift of God AND the Reward (Prize).
Ephesians 2:8 “For by grace you have been saved through faith;
and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God”
以弗 所 書 2:8 “你 们 得 救 是 本 乎 恩 ， 也 因 着 信 ； 这 并 不 是 出 於 自 己 ，乃 是 神 所 赐 的 “
1 Corinthians 9:24 “Do you not know that those who run in a race all run,
but only one receives the prize (Reward)?”
歌林 多 前 書 9:24 “岂 不 知 在 场 上 赛 跑 的 都 跑 ， 但 得 奖 赏 的 只 有 一 人 ？ 你 们 也 当 这 样 跑 ， 好 叫 你 们 得 着 奖 赏 。”
All believers enter the race of life when they receive Jesus Christ as Savior.
At that time they received the Free Gift of salvation,
but few believers will receive the Prize (Reward).
The Free Gift is Free, BUT we must work by grace and faith for the Prize (Reward).
A GREAT ILLUSTRATION OF THE ABOVE TRUTHS
NEVER FORGET IT
A person is born into this world physically. This is a real historical event in a person’s life.
BUT this baby must now grow to learn to know who his parents are,
to love and obey his parents!
The same is true in the spiritual realm. We believe Jesus Christ as Savior,
which a three year old child can do.
BUT now the new believer must learn to listen to God, know and love God, obey God.
And most believers will never, no never, grow up. This is a fact of life.
The whole Bible teaches this truth.
You can read the Book of Hebrews over and over again to learn this is true.
Now I realize false teachers, and there are so many of them, do not believe nor teach the above simple truths of Salvation, Justification and Sanctification. But that is their problem and they will be severely judged at the Judgment Seat of Christ, 2 Corinthians 5:10, for leading so many believers into a dark unfruitful life.
7 COMMANDS TO OVERCOME SIN
“Believe God” and do not be involved with an unbeliever in a boy-girlfriend relationship.
“Confess”(agree with God) your sins of disobedience to God.
“REPENT”(turn from your sin) and tell God you will never do it again.
Then “seek the Lord” to obey, know, love Him with a whole heart.
“Overcome” your sin.
“Seek His Kingdom
“Seek His righteousness.”
The first three may be easy but seeking the Lord and overcoming your sins, seeking His Kingdom and His righteousness require grace, faith, work and time. The Lord promises to reward you greatly! If you do not seek the Lord and don’t overcome your sins, you will continue to fall back into them over and over again. This is just a fact of life.
A child will keep falling until he learns to walk. He will keep falling until he overcomes falling and learns to walk. This is life.
Biblical Truths In The Old Testament Regarding Relationships?
How Did God Deal With Believing Israel In The Old Testament
When They Had Wrong Relationships With Unbelievers?
There are so many examples in the Old Testament of believers separating from darkness, I will only give a few.
1) Genesis 1:1-4“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. 3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. 4 God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness.
創世 記 1:1-4 “1 起 初 ， 神 创 造 天 地 。2 地 是 空 虚 混 沌 ， 渊 面 黑 暗 ； 神 的 灵 运 行 在 水 面 上 。3 神 说 ： 要 有 光 ， 就 有 了 光 。4 神 看 光 是 好 的 ， 就 把 光 暗 分 开 了 。”
Genesis 1:1,2 God created a perfect world, a perfect universe. The universe was full of light and there is no darkness in God. Satan a good angel at that time ruled over the earth. Then he became greedy and prideful and fell into sin. And God judged that 1st world with darkness and Satan fell. And God created a 2nd world which we live in now. And in the future God will destroy this 2nd world and create the 3rd world. Three is a perfect number.
Seehttp://zhangdaderen.com/milk.htm 圣经研习Study of Scripture, Chapter 2
Genesis 1:3 God did not let the world stay in darkness but He created light.
Genesis 1:4 And God separated the Light from the Darkness.
This is the basis of all Scriptural teaching regarding Light and Darkness being separated. Remember, as believers we are Light and we are to separate ourselves from the Darkness of this world. We are in the world but we are not of this world. We are to be a witness to the world but we are not to live like the world. We witness to unbelievers in words and action but we are not to have unbelieving boyfriends or girlfriends, we are not to marry unbelievers! But as you know, most Christians do not obey this most basic of God’s truth. We intermingle with the world, live like the world and therefore we are weak, sick, some are disciplined by the Lord and die in sin, 1 Corinthians 11:30, and all live an un-powerful, boring, dark life.
2) Genesis 6:11-13 “Now the earth was corrupt in the sight of God, and the earth was filled with violence. 12 God looked on the earth, and behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way upon the earth. 13 Then God said to Noah, “The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth.”
創世 記 6:11-13 “11 世 界 在 神 面 前 败 坏 ， 地 上 满 了 强 暴 . 。12 神 观 看 世 界 ,见 是 败 坏 了 ； 凡 有 血 气 的 人 在 地 上 . 都 败 坏 了 行 为 。13 神 就 对 挪 亚 说 ： 凡 有 血 气 的 人 ， 他 的 尽 头 已 经 来 到 我 面 前 ； 因 为 地 上 满 了 他 们 的 强 暴 ， 我 要 把 他 们 和 地 一 并 毁 灭 。”
Another separation from darkness and wicked occurs with Noah. God is separating Noah, a righteous man (Genesis 6:9) from the evil, wicked, dark world. God brings judgment on the wicked world and physically saves Noah and his family and brings them into a world separated from the wickedness.
3) Ezra chapters 9 & 10
Note these verses:
Ezra 9:1b-2 “The people of Israel and the priests and the Levites have not separated themselves from the peoples of the lands, according to their abominations, those of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians and the Amorites. 2 For they have taken some of their daughters as wives for themselves and for their sons, so that the holy race has intermingled with the peoples of the lands; indeed, the hands of the princes and the rulers have been foremost in this unfaithfulness.”
以斯 拉 記 9:1-2 “1 这 事 做 完 了 ， 众 首 领 来 见 我 ， 说 ： 以 色 列 民 和 祭 司 并 利 未 人 ， 没 有 离 绝 迦 南 人 、 赫 人 、 比 利 洗 人 、 耶 布 斯 人 、 亚 扪 人 、 摩 押 人 、 埃 及 人 、 亚 摩 利 人 ， 仍 效 法 这 些 国 的 民 ， 行 可 憎 的 事 。2 因 他 们 为 自 己 和 儿 子 娶 了 这 些 外 邦 女 子 为 妻 ， 以 致 圣 洁 的 种 类 和 这 些 国 的 民 混 杂 ； 而 且 首 领 和 官 长 在 这 事 上 为 罪 魁 。”
Note the leaders of Israel were the most unfaithful in marrying unbelievers, and the people also did sin against God.
Ezra 9:4 “Then everyone who trembled at the words of the God of Israel on account of the unfaithfulness of the exiles gathered to me, and I sat appalled until the evening offering.”
以斯 拉 記 9:4 “凡 为 以 色 列 神 言 语 战 兢 的 ， 都 因 这 被 掳 归 回 之 人 所 犯 的 罪 聚 集 到 我 这 里 来 。 我 就 惊 惧 忧 闷 而 坐 ， 直 到 献 晚 祭 的 时 候 。”
Note the believing people who lived in sin trembled at the words of God.
Do you fellow believers in Christ tremble at God’s Word for having unbelieving boy-girlfriends”
Do you tremble for going to bed with them?
Do you tremble for marrying unbelievers? Your sins are so serious and you live such a low level of life you can not even see Light when it is shining upon you. You have been blinded by your sins! You need to cry out to God for grace and mercy to revive you. You need to separate immediately from unbelieving boy-girl friends.
But you can not separate from your marriage mate, unless they want to leave you, and you can never encourage them to leave you. 1 Corinthians 7:13,15 And a woman who has an unbelieving husband, and he consents to live with her, she must not send her husband away. 15 Yet if the unbelieving one leaves, let him leave; the brother or the sister is not under bondage in such cases, but God has called us to peace.
歌林 多 前 書 7:13,15 “13 妻 子 有 不 信 的 丈 夫 ， 丈 夫 也 情 愿 和 他 同 住 ， 他 就 不 要 离 弃 丈 夫 。15 倘 若 那 不 信 的 人 要 离 去 ， 就 由 他 离 去 罢 ！ 无 论 是 弟 兄 ， 是 姐 妹 ， 遇 着 这 样 的 事 都 不 必 拘 束 。 神 召 我 们 原 是 要 我 们 和 睦 。”
Ezra 10:3a “So now let us make a covenant with our God to put away all the wives and their children…”
以斯 拉 記 10:3 “现 在 当 与 我 们 的 神 立 约 ， 休 这 一 切 的 妻 ， 离 绝 他 们 所 生 的 ， 照 着 我 主 和 那 因 神 命 令 战 兢 之 人 所 议 定 的 ， 按 律 法 而 行 。”
Note, these believers believed God’s Word, they confessed and repented from their sin of having unbelieving mates. They “put them away” means they separated from them and sent them away to go to their own unbelieving nations. At this time this was the right thing because Israel was God’s people, but it can not be done today according to 1Corinthians 7:13,15.
Ezra 10:11b “separate yourselves from the peoples of the land & from the foreign wives.”
The same is true today with Christians. We are not to have unbelieving boy-girlfriends. We are commanded by God to marry “only in the Lord.”
以斯 拉 記 10:11 “现 在 当 向 耶 和 华 ─ 你 们 列 祖 的 神 认 罪 ， 遵 行 他 的 旨 意 ， 离 绝 这 些 国 的 民 和 外 邦 的 女 子 .”
Ezra 10:14 “until the fierce anger of our God on account of this matter is turned away from us.” God is angry with Israel’s sins and is not blessing them, God is judging them. And the same is true today with Christians. Believers are under the discipline of God for having unbelieving boyfriends or girlfriends. And if you have sinfully married an unbeliever you need to believe God’s Word, confess and repent from your past sin.
以斯 拉 記 10:14 “不 如 为 全 会 众 派 首 领 办 理 。 凡 我 们 城 邑 中 娶 外 邦 女 子 为 妻 的 ， 当 按 所 定 的 日 期 ,同 着 本 城 的 长 老 和 士 师 而 来 , 直 到 办 完 这 事 ,神 的 烈 怒 就 转 离 我 们 了 .”
1 Corinthians 11:30 “For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep (die).” 歌 林 多 前 書 11:30 “因 此 ， 在 你 们 中 间 有 好 些 软 弱 的 与 患 病 的 ， 死 （ 原 文 是 睡 ） 的 也 不 少 。”
Why do you think believers in your local church are so weak, physically and spiritually?
Why do you think so many believers are sick, physically weak?
Why do some believers die an untimely death, a death before they are old?
Why do most Christians in China do not read their Bible, pray or attend a local church?
They live in sin and God is disciplining them and they are weak, sick and ready to die.
4) Nehemiah 13:23-27“In those days I also saw that the Jews had married women from Ashdod, Ammon and Moab. 24 As for their children, half spoke in the language of Ashdod, and none of them was able to speak the language of Judah, but the language of his own people. 25 So I contended with them and cursed them and struck some of them and pulled out their hair, and made them swear by God, “You shall not give your daughters to their sons, nor take of their daughters for your sons or for yourselves. 26 Did not Solomon king of Israel sin regarding these things? Yet among the many nations there was no king like him, and he was loved by his God, and God made him king over all Israel; nevertheless the foreign women caused even him to sin. 27 Do we then hear about you that you have committed all this great evil by acting unfaithfully against our God by marrying foreign women?”
尼希 米 記 13:23-27 “23 那 些 日 子 ， 我 也 见 犹 大 人 娶 了 亚 实 突 、 亚 扪 、 摩 押 的 女 子 为 妻 。24 他 们 的 儿 女 说 话 ， 一 半 是 亚 实 突 的 话 ， 不 会 说 犹 大 的 话 ， 所 说 的 是 照 着 各 族 的 方 言 。25 我 就 斥 责 他 们 ， 咒 诅 他 们 ， 打 了 他 们 几 个 人 ， 拔 下 他 们 的 头 发 ， 叫 他 们 指 着 神 起 誓 ， 必 不 将 自 己 的 女 儿 嫁 给 外 邦 人 的 儿 子 ， 也 不 为 自 己 和 儿 子 娶 他 们 的 女 儿 。26 我 又 说 ： 以 色 列 王 所 罗 门 不 是 在 这 样 的 事 上 犯 罪 麽 ？ 在 多 国 中 并 没 有 一 王 像 他 ， 且 蒙 他 神 所 爱 ， 神 立 他 作 以 色 列 全 国 的 王 ； 然 而 连 他 也 被 外 邦 女 子 引 诱 犯 罪 。
27 如 此 ， 我 岂 听 你 们 行 这 大 恶 ， 娶 外 邦 女 子 干 犯 我 们 的 神 呢 ？”
Again we see years later that believing Israel still had not learned to obey God. To believe Christ as Savior is easy, but to grow is difficult. But the only satisfying life on earth is obeying God and growing up. And to receive eternal rewards and to reign with Christ in His Kingdom on earth we must obey and grow now.
You see what the man of God did, Nehemiah? He fought with those who had married foreigners, Nehemiah cursed them, he beat some physically and pulled out some of their hair. He was angry with them for disobeying God. God will discipline Christians today who disobey Him and have unbelieving boy-girlfriends and marry unbelievers.
The Word of God is very clear marry “only in the Lord.” We are to only marry fellow believers and preferably believers who obey God and are growing. Christians who have unbelieving boy-girlfriends, God says “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?”
As a Christian believer, your choice is to obey God or not. The consequences are blessings and growth for obedience, discipline and loss of rewards now and in the future for disobedience. You disobey God you disobey the very reason why God created you.
“It is a terrible thing (for you believer) to fall into the hands of the living God (and be judged by Him).”
“落在 永 生 神 的 手 里 ， 真 是 可 怕 的 ！”
虽然这不是回避中彩票的理由，但在你以狂热的消费方式击中巴哈马之前，必须牢记这一点。对于那些真正赚钱的亿万富翁来说，美国的税率是39.6％。 也就是说，他们很少支付这笔费用。 他们的律师费要低于他们逃的税。
有趣的是，因暴富而被所爱的人谋杀的事情也时有发生。威廉·波斯特三世在中彩票后就被他兄弟雇佣的杀手盯上了。 Ibi Roncaioli 被丈夫毒死。 Urooj Khan 在领取了彩票奖金后的第二天就死于氰化物中毒，而他那时刚刚与妻子和女儿吃完晚餐，也正是她们瓜分了奖金。
我真的很喜欢用Kanye West 作为例证，但事实证明，在赚钱之前他认为自己就像上帝一样。 还有很多例子， 贾斯汀比伯，凯瑟琳海格尔和麦当娜只是一些知名度特别高的演员，他们都一样让人无法忍受。
科技亿万富翁也陷入财富陷阱。许多科技亿万富翁通过一些才能和运气获得了财富，但成功很快冲昏了他们的头脑。以 Mark Cuban 为例，他于1999年以57亿美元的价格将一家科技公司出售给了雅虎。最近古巴人吹嘘说如果他竞选总统，他可以击败希拉里克林顿并“粉碎”唐纳德特朗普。
6 Reasons You Don’t Want To Get RichThe Alternative Daily - June 13, 2016 —Erin Wildermuth
Most people have bought a lottery ticket at one point or another. We all know the odds of winning makes each ticket purchase a questionable economic action, but we do it anyway. In part, we’re paying for a nudge to the imagination. We ask ourselves: What would I do with millions of dollars? We imagine something fanciful and wonderful, something like buying a superyacht and taking all of our friends on an around-the-world tour.
What we don’t imagine iswinding up worse off than we already are, but this happens more often than one might think. Lottery winners aren’t the only recipients of easy cash. Athletes, actors and even tech billionaires have been known to suffer as a result of sudden wealth. Here are six reasons you don’t want to get rich.
Though commonly discussed, the tax problems associated with landfall riches are real. Federal taxes on lottery winnings are 39.6 percent. Only 25 percent is actually withheld for federal taxes. Oftentimes the state also demands a chunk of winnings. Local taxes might apply. If you decide to share your winnings, that generosity will not include a lessening or sharing of tax obligations.
While this is no reason to shun a lottery win, it is certainly something to keep in mind before hitting the Bahamas on a spending spree.
For those billionaires that actually earn their money, the US tax bracket is 39.6 percent. That said, they rarely pay that amount. Their lawyers are less expensive than the taxes they dodge.
Money really can’t buy happiness
It may be a cliché, but it’s true: money can’t buy happiness. Though people report increasedhappiness levels immediately after the win, they are actually less happy in the long run. Why? Apparently winning the lottery makes mundane, everyday events less pleasurable.
Sudden wealth syndromeSudden wealth syndrome is a well-documented phenomenon. It’s what often happens when someone unaccustomed to large sums of money suddenly finds themselves with an unprecedented amount of cash. They spend it on ridiculous things.
Multiple homes, fancy cars and terrible investments are par for the course. According to one study, 44 percent of people who win the lottery are broke five years later. A third actually declare bankruptcy. Sports Illustrated estimates that 60 percent ofNFL players are dead broke just five years after their contracts end.
Better to work a regular job and have money for your bills than find yourself unemployed and filing for bankruptcy.
Love, family and friends
A survey of thousands of lottery winners found that women who won a large amount were 40 percent less likely to marry in the next three years than those who won lesser amounts. Different papers have read this in different ways, with some reporting the woman can’t find love and others assuming that they are enjoying the single life.
Despite many examples of couples who have divorced following lottery winnings, studies find no correlation between divorce and a lottery win. Several accounts point to dissolving friendships as once-trusted comrades become shameless leeches.
Interestingly, murder by loved ones isn’t off the table. William Post the Third had a hitman after him following his lottery win. The would-be killer had been hired by his brother. Ibi Roncaioli was poisoned by her husband. Urooj Khan died of cyanide poisoning the day after collecting his lottery winnings. He had just finished dinner with his wife and daughter, who split the winnings.
If you manage to pay off your taxes, spend wisely, and keep your relationships happy and healthy, you may still find that sudden wealth turns you into a person the old you wouldn’t much like.
This is especially true of people who have earned their riches. Being an actor, athlete or rapper certainly takes talent, but these people don’t work as hard as those supporting a family on minimum wage. Nor do they possess the skills of a rocket scientist. Arguably, our society overvalues their services and provides them with heavily inflated wages. These inflated wages sometimes lead to an inflated ego.
I would really like to use Kanye West as an illustration, but it turns out he thought himself god-like before making any money at all. There are still plenty of examples. Justin Bieber, Katherine Heigl and Madonna are just a few top performers who are known to be particularly unbearable.Tech billionaires also fall into this trap of fortune. Many a tech billionaire arrived at their fortune through a bit of talent and a lot of luck, but success quickly goes to their heads. Take Mark Cuban, for example. He sold a tech company to Yahoo for $5.7 billion in 1999. Recently Cuban boasted that he could beat Hillary Clinton and “crush” Donald Trump if he ran for president.
Having money might make you a conservative
If maintaining liberal sensibilities are important to you, then perhaps winning the lottery will not help you remain true to yourself. Ina fascinating study from the University of Warwick in the UK, lottery winners “tend to switch towards support for a right-wing political party and to become less egalitarian. The larger the win, the more people tilt to the right.”
Child and adolescent psychologist, and the author of “Wired Child: Reclaiming Childhood in a Digital Age”
Mar 11, 2018
The Tech Industry’s War on Kids
How psychology is being used as a weapon against children
“We called the police because she wrecked her room and hit her mom… all because we took her phone,” Kelly’s father explained. He said that when the police arrived that evening, Kelly was distraught and told an officer that she wanted to kill herself. So an ambulance was called, and the 15-year-old was strapped to a gurney, taken to a psychiatric hospital, and monitored for safety before being released. Days after being hospitalized, Kelly was brought to my office by her parents who wanted to get help for their troubled girl.
Kelly’s parents spoke first. They said that their daughter’s hospitalization was the culmination of a yearlong downward spiral spurred by her phone obsession. Kelly had been refusing to spend time with her family or focus on school. Instead, she favored living her life on social media. A previously happy girl and strong student, Kelly had grown angry, sullen, and was now bringing home report cards with sinking grades. Kelly’s parents had tried many times in prior months to set limits on their daughter’s phone use, but she had become increasingly defiant and deceitful, even sneaking on her phone at all hours of the night.
When Kelly’s latest report card revealed a number of failing grades, her parents felt compelled to act. They told Kelly early in the afternoon on the day the police were called that she would need to turn in her phone by 9 p.m. But when the time came, Kelly refused, and a pushing match ensued between her and her parents, concluding in the violent tantrum that led the girl to be hospitalized.
I asked Kelly, who was sitting in a corner, to help me understand her perspective on that evening. She didn’t respond and instead glared at her parents. But then, surprising everyone in the room, she cried, “They took my f***ing phone!” Attempting to engage Kelly in conversation, I asked her what she liked about her phone and social media. “They make me happy,” she replied.
The Undoing of Families
As Kelly and her family continued their appointments with me in the coming months, two concerns dominated our meetings. The first was that Kelly’s unhealthy attachment to her phone continued, causing almost constant tension at home. The second concern emerged during my meetings with Kelly’s parents alone. Even though they were loving and involved parents, Kelly’s mom couldn’t help feeling that they’d failed their daughter and must have done something terribly wrong that led to her problems.
My practice as a child and adolescent psychologist is filled with families like Kelly’s. These parents say their kids’ extreme overuse of phones, video games, and social media is the most difficult parenting issue they face— and, in many cases, is tearing the family apart. Preteen and teen girls refuse to get off their phones, even though it’s remarkably clear that the devices are making them miserable. I also see far too many boys whose gaming obsessions lead them to forgo interest in school, extracurricular activities, and anything else productive. Some of these boys, as they reach their later teens, use their large bodies to terrorize parents who attempt to set gaming limits. A common thread running through many of these cases is parent guilt, as so many are certain they did something to put their kids on a destructive path.
What none of these parents understand is that their children’s and teens’ destructive obsession with technology is the predictable consequence of a virtually unrecognized merger between the tech industry and psychology. This alliance pairs the consumer tech industry’s immense wealth with the most sophisticated psychological research, making it possible to develop social media, video games, and phones with drug-like power to seduce young users.
These parents have no idea that lurking behind their kids’ screens and phones are a multitude of psychologists, neuroscientists, and social science experts who use their knowledge of psychological vulnerabilities to devise products that capture kids’ attention for the sake of industry profit. What these parents and most of the world have yet to grasp is that psychology— a discipline that we associate with healing — is now being used as a weapon against children.
“Machines Designed to Change Humans”
Nestled in an unremarkable building on the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto, California, is the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab, founded in 1998. The lab’s creator, Dr. B.J. Fogg, is a psychologist and the father of persuasive technology, a discipline in which digital machines and apps— including smartphones, social media, and video games — are configured to alter human thoughts and behaviors. As the lab’s website boldly proclaims: “Machines designed to change humans.”
Foggspeaks openly of the ability to use smartphones and other digital devices to change our ideas and actions: “We can now create machines that can change what people think and what people do, and the machines can do that autonomously.” Called “the millionaire maker,” Fogg has groomed former students who have used his methods to develop technologies that now consume kids’ lives. As he recently touted on his personal website, “My students often do groundbreaking projects, and they continue having impact in the real world after they leave Stanford… For example, Instagram has influenced the behavior of over 800 million people. The co-founder was a student of mine.”
Intriguingly, there are signs that Fogg is feeling the heat from recent scrutiny of the use of digital devices to alter behavior. His boast about Instagram, which was present on his website as late as January of 2018, has been removed. Fogg’swebsite also has lately undergone a substantial makeover, as he now seems to go out of his way to suggest his work has benevolent aims, commenting, “I teach good people how behavior works so they can create products & services that benefit everyday people around the world.” Likewise, the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab website optimistically claims, “Persuasive technologies can bring about positive changes in many domains, including health, business, safety, and education. We also believe that new advances in technology can help promote world peace in 30 years.”
While Fogg emphasizes persuasive design’s sunny future, he is quite indifferent to the disturbing reality now: that hidden influence techniques are being used by the tech industry to hook and exploit users for profit. His enthusiastic vision also conveniently neglects to include how this generation of children and teens, with their highly malleable minds, is being manipulated and hurt by forces unseen.
If you haven’t heard of persuasive technology, that’s no accident— tech corporations would prefer it to remain in the shadows, as most of us don’t want to be controlled and have a special aversion to kids being manipulated for profit. Persuasive technology (also called persuasive design) works by deliberately creating digital environments that users feel fulfill their basic human drives — to be social or obtain goals — better than real-world alternatives. Kids spend countless hours in social media and video game environments in pursuit of likes, “friends,” game points, and levels — because it’s stimulating, they believe that this makes them happy and successful, and they find it easier than doing the difficult but developmentally important activities of childhood.
While persuasion techniques work well on adults, they are particularly effective at influencing the still-maturing child and teen brain. “Video games, better than anything else in our culture, deliver rewards to people, especially teenage boys,”says Fogg. “Teenage boys are wired to seek competency. To master our world and get better at stuff. Video games, in dishing out rewards, can convey to people that their competency is growing, you can get better at something second by second.” And it’s persuasive design that’s helped convince this generation of boys they are gaining “competency” by spending countless hours on game sites, when the sad reality is they are locked away in their rooms gaming, ignoring school, and not developing the real-world competencies that colleges and employers demand.
Likewise, social media companies use persuasive design to prey on the age-appropriate desire for preteen and teen kids, especially girls, to be socially successful. This drive is built into our DNA, since real-world relational skills have fostered human evolution. The Huffington Postarticle, “What Really Happens On a Teen Girl’s iPhone” describes the life of 14-year-old Casey from Millburn, New Jersey. With 580 friends on Instagram and 1,110 on Facebook, she’s preoccupied with the number of “likes” her Facebook profile picture receives compared with her peers. As she says, “If you don’t get 100 ‘likes,’ you make other people share it so you get 100…. Or else you just get upset. Everyone wants to get the most ‘likes.’ It’s like a popularity contest.”
Article author Bianca Bosker says that there are costs to Casey’s phone obsession, noting that the “girl’s phone, be it Facebook, Instagram or iMessage, is constantly pulling her away from her homework, sleep, or conversations with her family.” Casey says she wishes she could put her phone down. But she can’t. “I’ll wake up in the morning and go on Facebook just… because,” she says. “It’s not like I want to or I don’t. I just go on it. I’m, like, forced to. I don’t know why. I need to. Facebook takes up my whole life.”
Important Questions Are Simply Not Asked
B.J. Fogg may not be a household name, but Fortune Magazine calls him a “New Guru You Should Know,” and his research is driving a worldwide legion of user experience (UX) designers who utilize and expand upon his models of persuasive design. As Forbes Magazine writer Anthony Wing Kosnernotes, “No one has perhaps been as influential on the current generation of user experience (UX) designers as Stanford researcher B.J. Fogg.”
UX designers come from many disciplines, including psychology as well as brain and computer sciences. However, the core of some UX research is about using psychology to take advantage of our human vulnerabilities. That’s particularly pernicious when the targets are children. As Fogg is quoted in Kosner’s Forbes article, “Facebook, Twitter, Google, you name it, these companies have been using computers to influence our behavior.” However, the driving force behind behavior change isn’t computers. “The missing link isn’t the technology, it’s psychology,” says Fogg.
UX researchers not only often follow Fogg’s design model, but some may also share his apparent tendency to overlook the broader implications of persuasive design. They focus on the task at hand, building digital machines and apps that better demand users’ attention, compel users to return again and again, and grow businesses’ bottom line. Less considered can be how the world’s children are affected by thousands of UX designers working simultaneously to pull them onto a multitude of digital devices and products at the expense of real life.
According to B.J. Fogg, the“Fogg Behavior Model” is a well-tested method to change behavior and, in its simplified form, involves three primary factors: motivation, ability, and triggers. Describing how his formula is effective at getting people to use a social network, the psychologist says in an academic paper that a key motivator is users’ desire for “social acceptance,” although he says an even more powerful motivator is the desire “to avoid being socially rejected.” Regarding ability, Fogg suggests that digital products should be made so that users don’t have to “think hard.” Hence, social networks are designed for ease of use. Finally, Fogg says that potential users need to be triggered to use a site. This is accomplished by a myriad of digital tricks, including the sending of incessant notifications urging users to view friends’ pictures, telling them they are missing out while not on the social network, or suggesting that they check — yet again — to see if anyone liked their post or photo.
Fogg’s formula is the blueprint for building multibillion dollar social media and gaming companies. However, moral questions about the impact of turning persuasive techniques on children and teens are not being asked. For example, should the fear of social rejection be used to compel kids to compulsively use social media? Is it okay to lure kids away from school tasks that demand a strong mental effort so they can spend their lives on social networks or playing video games that don’t make them think much at all? And is it okay to incessantly trigger kids to use revenue-producing digital products at the expense of engaging with family and other important real-life activities?
Persuasive technologies work because of their apparent triggering of the release of dopamine, a powerful neurotransmitter involved in reward, attention, and addiction. In the Venice region of Los Angeles, now dubbed “Silicon Beach,” the startup Dopamine Labsboasts about its use of persuasive techniques to increase profits: “Connect your app to our Persuasive AI [Artificial Intelligence] and lift your engagement and revenue up to 30% by giving your users our perfect bursts of dopamine,” and “A burst of Dopamine doesn’t just feel good: it’s proven to re-wire user behavior and habits.”
Ramsay Brown, the founder of Dopamine Labs,says in a KQED Science article, “We have now developed a rigorous technology of the human mind, and that is both exciting and terrifying. We have the ability to twiddle some knobs in a machine learning dashboard we build, and around the world hundreds of thousands of people are going to quietly change their behavior in ways that, unbeknownst to them, feel second-nature but are really by design.” Programmers call this “brain hacking,” as it compels users to spend more time on sites even though they mistakenly believe it’s strictly due to their own conscious choices.
Social networks and video games use the trusted brain-manipulation technique of variable reward (think slot machine). Users never know when they will get the next “like” or game reward, and it’s delivered at the perfect time to foster maximal stimulation and keep them on the site. Banks of computers employ AI to “learn” which of a countless number of persuasive design elements will keep users hooked. A persuasion profile of a particular user’s unique vulnerabilities is developed in real time and exploited to keep users on the site and make them return again and again for longer periods of time. This drives up profits for consumer internet companies whose revenue is based on how much their products are used.
Clandestine techniques that manipulate users to fulfill a profit motive are regarded by programmers as “dark design.” Why would firms resort to such tactics? As former tech executive Bill Davidow says in his Atlanticarticle“Exploiting the Neuroscience of Internet Addiction,” “The leaders of Internet companies face an interesting, if also morally questionable, imperative: either they hijack neuroscience to gain market share and make large profits, or they let competitors do that and run away with the market.”
There are few industries as cutthroat and unregulated as Silicon Valley. Social media and video game companies believe they are compelled to use persuasive technology in the arms race for attention, profits, and survival. Children’s well-being is not part of the decision calculus.
A Peek Behind the Curtain
While social media and video game companies have been surprisingly successful at hiding their use of persuasive design from the public, one breakthrough occurred in 2017 when Facebook documents wereleaked to The Australian. The internal report crafted by Facebook executives showed the social network boasting to advertisers that by monitoring posts, interactions, and photos in real time, the network is able to track when teens feel “insecure,” “worthless,” “stressed,” “useless” and a “failure.” Why would the social network do this? The report also bragged about Facebook’s ability to micro-target ads down to “moments when young people need a confidence boost.”
Persuasive technology’s use of digital media to target children, deploying the weapon of psychological manipulation at just the right moment, is what makes it so powerful. These design techniques provide tech corporations a window into kids’ hearts and minds to measure their particular vulnerabilities, which can then be used to control their behavior as consumers. This isn’t some strange future… this is now. Facebookclaimed the leaked report was misrepresented in the press. But when child advocates called on the social network to release it, the company refused to do so, preferring to keep the techniques it uses to influence kids shrouded in secrecy.
Digital Pied Pipers
The official tech industry line is that persuasive technologies are used to make products more engaging and enjoyable. But the revelations of industry insiders can reveal darker motives. Video game developer John Hopson, who has a Ph.D. in behavioral and brain science, wrote the paper“Behavioral Game Design.” He describes the use of design features to alter video game player behavior, sounding much like an experimenter running lab animals through their paces, answering questions such as: “How do we make players maintain a high, consistent rate of activity?” and “How to make players play forever.”
Revealing the hard science behind persuasive technology, Hopson says, “This is not to say that players are the same as rats, but that there are general rules of learning which apply equally to both.” After penning the paper, Hopson washired by Microsoft, where he helped lead the development of the Xbox Live, Microsoft’s online gaming system. He also assisted in the development of Xbox games popular with kids, including those in the Halo series. The parents I work with simply have no idea about the immense amount of financial and psychological firepower aimed at their children to keep them playing video games “forever.”
Another persuasive technology expert is Bill Fulton, a game designer who trained in cognitive and quantitative psychology. He started Microsoft’s Games User-Research group before founding his own consulting agency. Fulton is transparent about the power of persuasive design and the intent of the gaming industry,disclosing in Big Four Accounting Firm PwC’s tech business journal: “If game designers are going to pull a person away from every other voluntary social activity or hobby or pastime, they’re going to have to engage that person at a very deep level in every possible way they can.”
This is a major effect of persuasive design today: building video games and social media products so compelling that they pull users away from the real world to spend their lives in for-profit domains. But to engage in a pursuit at the expense of important real-world activities is a core element of addiction. And there is increasing evidence that persuasive design has now become so potent that it is capable of contributing to video game and internet addictions— diagnoses that are officially recognized in China, South Korea, and Japan, and which are under consideration in the U.S.
Not only does persuasive design appear to drive kids’ addictions to devices, but knowledge of addiction is used to make persuasive design more effective at hijacking the mind. As Dopamine Labs’ Ramsay Brownacknowledges in an episode of CBS’s 60 Minutes, “Since we’ve figured to some extent how these pieces of the brain that handle addiction are working, people have figured out how to juice them further and how to bake that information into apps.”
Stealing from Childhood
The creation of digital products with drug-like effects that are able to “pull a person away” from engaging in real-life activities is the reason why persuasive technology is profoundly destructive. Today, persuasive design is likely distracting adults from driving safely, productive work, and engaging with their own children— all matters which need urgent attention. Still, because the child and adolescent brain is more easily controlled than the adult mind, the use of persuasive design is having a much more hurtful impact on kids.
Persuasive technologies are reshaping childhood, luring kids away from family and schoolwork to spend more and more of their lives sitting before screens and phones. According to a Kaiser Family Foundationreport, younger U.S. children now spend 5 ½ hours each day with entertainment technologies, including video games, social media, and online videos. Even more, the average teen now spends an incredible 8 hours each day playing with screens and phones. Productive uses of technology — where persuasive design is much less a factor — are almost an afterthought, as U.S. kids only spend 16 minutes each day using the computer at home for school.
Quietly, using screens and phones for entertainment has become thedominant activity of childhood. Younger kids spend more time engaging with entertainment screens than they do in school, and teens spend even more time playing with screens and phones than they do sleeping. The result is apparent in restaurants, the car sitting next to you at the stoplight, and even many classrooms: Attesting to the success of persuasive technology, kids are so taken with their phones and other devices that they have turned their backs to the world around them. Hiding in bedrooms on devices, or consumed by their phones in the presence of family, many children are missing out on real-life engagement with family and school— the two cornerstones of childhood that lead them to grow up happy and successful. Even during the few moments kids have away from their devices, they are often preoccupied with one thought: getting back on them.
In addition to the displacement of healthy childhood activities, persuasive technologies are pulling kids into often toxic digital environments. A too frequent experience for many is being cyberbullied, which increases their risk ofskipping school and considering suicide. And there is growing recognition of the negative impact of FOMO, or the fear of missing out, as kids spend their social media lives watching a parade of peers who look to be having a great time without them, feeding their feelings of loneliness and being less than.
A Wired Generation Falling Apart
The combined effects of the displacement of vital childhood activities and exposure to unhealthy online environments is wrecking a generation. In her recent Atlanticarticle, “Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?,” Dr. Jean Twenge, a professor of psychology at San Diego State University, describes how long hours spent on smartphones and social media are driving teen girls in the U.S. to experience high rates of depression and suicidal behaviors.
And as the typical age when kids get their first smartphone has fallen to 10, it’s no surprise to see serious psychiatric problems— once the domain of teens — now enveloping young kids. Self-inflicted injuries, such as cutting, that are serious enough to require treatment in an emergency room, have increased dramatically in 10- to 14-year-old girls, up 19% per year since 2009.
While girls are pulled onto smartphones and social media, boys are more likely to be seduced into the world of video gaming, often at the expense of a focus on school. High amounts of gaming arelinked to lower grades, so with boys gaming more than girls, it’s no surprise to see this generation of boys struggling to make it to college: a full 57% of college admissions are granted to young women compared with only 43% to young men. And, as boys transition to manhood, they can’t shake their gaming habits. Economists working with the National Bureau of Economic Research recently demonstrated how many young U.S. men are choosing to play video games rather than join the workforce.
As a child and adolescent psychologist myself, the inevitable conclusion is both embarrassing and heartbreaking. The destructive forces of psychology deployed by the tech industry are making a greater impact on kids than the positive uses of psychology by mental health providers and child advocates. Put plainly, the science of psychology is hurting kids more than helping them.
Hope for this wired generation has seemed dim until recently, when a surprising group has come forward to criticize the tech industry’s use of psychological manipulation: tech executives. Tristan Harris, formerly a design ethicist at Google, has led the way by unmasking the industry’s use of persuasive design. Interviewed in The Economist’s 1843 magazine, hesays, “The job of these companies is to hook people, and they do that by hijacking our psychological vulnerabilities.”
Another tech exec raising red flags about his tech industry’s use of mind manipulation is former Facebook president Sean Parker. Interviewed in Axios, hediscloses: “The thought process that went into building these applications, Facebook being the first of them… was all about: ‘How do we consume as much of your time and conscious attention as possible?’” He also said that Facebook exploits “vulnerability in human psychology” and remarked, “God only knows what it’s doing to our children’s brains.”
A theme advanced by these tech execs is that the industry is unfairly using persuasive technology to gain a profit advantage. “Consumer internet businesses are about exploiting psychology,” Chamath Palihapitiya, a former Facebook VPsays in a talk ironically given at B.J. Fogg’s Stanford University. “We want to psychologically figure out how to manipulate you as fast as possible and then give you back that dopamine hit.”
Having children of their own can change tech execs’ perspective. Tony Fadell, formerly at Apple, is considered the father of the iPad and also of much of the iPhone. He is also the founder and current CEO of Nest. “A lot of the designers and coders who were in their 20s when we were creating these things didn’t have kids. Now they have kids,” Fadellremarks, while speaking at the Design Museum in London. “And they see what’s going on, and they say, ‘Wait a second.’ And they start to rethink their design decisions.”
Marc Benioff, CEO of the cloud computing company Salesforce, is one of the voices calling for the regulation of social media companies because of their potential to addict children. He says that just as the cigarette industry has been regulated, so too should social media companies. “I think that, for sure, technology has addictive qualities that we have to address, and that product designers are working to make those products more addictive, and we need to rein that back as much as possible,” Beniofftold CNBC in January, 2018, while in Davos, Switzerland, site of the World Economic Forum.
Benioff says that parents should do their part to limit their kids’ devices, yet expressed, “If there’s an unfair advantage or things that are out there that are not understood by parents, then the government’s got to come forward and illuminate that.” Since millions of parents, for example the parents of my patient Kelly, have absolutely no idea that devices are used to hijack their children’s minds and lives, regulation of such practices is the right thing to do.
Another improbable group to speak out on behalf of children is tech investors. Major Apple stockholders— the hedge fund Jana Partners and California State Teachers’ Retirement System, which collectively own $2 billion in the firm’s stock — have recently raised concerns that persuasive design is contributing to kids’ suffering. In an open letter to Apple, the investors, teaming up with leading child technology experts, detailed evidence that kids’ overuse of phones and devices is leading to their increased risk of depression and suicide risk factors. Specifically calling out the destructive impact of persuasive technology, the letter reads: “It is also no secret that social media sites and applications for which the iPhone and iPad are a primary gateway are usually designed to be as addictive and time-consuming as possible.”
How has the consumer tech industry responded to these calls for change? By going even lower. Facebook recently launched Messenger Kids, a social media app that will reach kids as young as five years old. Suggestive that harmful persuasive design is now honing in on very young children is thedeclarationof Messenger Kids Art Director, Shiu Pei Luu, “We want to help foster communication [on Facebook] and make that the most exciting thing you want to be doing.”
Facebook’s narrow-minded vision of childhood is reflective of how out of touch the social network and other consumer tech companies are with the needs of an increasingly troubled generation. The most “exciting thing” for young children should be spending time with family, playing outside, engaging in creative play, and other vital developmental experiences— not being drawn into the social media vortex on phones or tablets. Moreover, Facebook Messenger Kids is giving an early start to the wired life on social media that we know poses risks of depression and suicide-related behavior for older children.
In response to the release of Facebook’s Messenger Kids, the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC) sent Facebook aletter signed by numerous health advocates calling on the company to pull the plug on the app. Facebook has yet to respond to the letter and instead continues to aggressively market Messenger Kids for young children.
The Silence of a Profession
While tech execs and investors are speaking out against the tech industry’s psychological manipulation of children, the American Psychological Association (APA)— which is tasked with protecting children and families from harmful psychological practices — has been essentially silent on the matter. This is not suggestive of malice; instead, the APA leadership — much like parents — is likely unaware of the tech industry’s distorted use of psychology. Nonetheless, there is irony, as psychologists and their powerful tools are guided by ethics, while tech execs and investors are not.
TheEthics Code of the APA, U.S psychology’s chief professional organization, is quite clear: “Psychologists strive to benefit those with whom they work and take care to do no harm.” Moreover, APA Ethical Standards require the profession to make efforts to correct the “misuse” of the work of psychologists, which would include the application of B.J. Fogg’s persuasive technologies to influence children against their best interests. The code even provides special protection to kids because their developmental “vulnerabilities impair autonomous decision making.”
Manipulating children for profit without their own or parents’ consent, and driving kids to spend more time on devices that contribute to emotional and academic problems is the embodiment of unethical psychological practice. Silicon Valley corporations and the investment firms that support them are heavily populated by highly privileged white men who use concealed mind-bending techniques to control the lives of defenseless kids. Addressing this inequity is Tristan Harris, whosays, “Never before in history have basically 50 mostly men, mostly 20–35, mostly white engineer designer types within 50 miles of where we are right now [Silicon Valley], had control of what a billion people think and do.” Harris was recounting an excerpt of a presentation he made while at Google during an interview with journalist Kara Swisher for Recode Decode in February of 2017.
Some may argue that it’s the parents’ responsibility to protect their children from tech industry deception. However, parents have no idea of the powerful forces aligned against them, nor do they know how technologies are developed with drug-like effects to capture kids’ minds. Parents simply can’t protect their children or teens from something that’s concealed and unknown to them.
Others will claim that nothing should be done because the intention behind persuasive design is to build better products, not manipulate kids. In fact, for those working in the user experience and persuasion fields, I’m sure there is no intent to harm children. The negative consequences of persuasive technology have been for the most part accidental, an unfortunate byproduct of an exceptionally competitive design process. However, similar circumstances exist in the cigarette industry, as tobacco companies have as their intention profiting from the sale of their product, not hurting children. Nonetheless, because cigarettes and persuasive design predictably harm children, actions should be taken to protect kids from their effects.
A Conscience in an Age of Machines
Since its inception, the field of persuasive technology has operated in a moral vacuum. The resulting tragedy is not surprising.
In truth, the harmful potential of using persuasive design has long been recognized. Fogg, himself,says in a 1999 journal article, “Persuasive computers can also be used for destructive purposes; the dark side of changing attitudes and behaviors leads toward manipulation and coercion.” And in a 1998 academic paper, Fogg describes what should happen if things go wrong, saying, if persuasive technologies are “deemed harmful or questionable in some regard, a researcher should then either take social action or advocate that others do so.”
More recently, Fogg has actually acknowledged the ill effects of persuasive design. Interviewed by Ian Leslie in 2016 for The Economist’s 1843 Magazine, Foggsays, “I look at some of my former students and I wonder if they’re really trying to make the world better, or just make money.” And in 2017 when Fogg was interviewed by 032c Magazine, he acknowledged, “You look around the restaurants and pretty much everyone has their phone on the table and they’re just being constantly drawn away from the live face-to-face interaction — I do think that’s a bad thing.” Nonetheless, Fogg hasn’t taken meaningful action to help those hurt by the field he fathered. Nor have those in positions of power, with the recent exception of tech execs coming forward, done anything to limit the manipulative and coercive use of digital machines against children and teens.
So, how can children be protected from the tech industry’s use of persuasive design? I suggest turning to President John F. Kennedy’s prescient guidance: Hesaid that technology “has no conscience of its own. Whether it will become a force for good or ill depends on man.” I believe that the psychology profession, with its understanding of the mind and ethics code as guidance, can step forward to become a conscience guiding how tech corporations interact with children and teens.
The APA should begin by demanding that the tech industry’s behavioral manipulation techniques be brought out of the shadows and exposed to the light of public awareness. Changes should be made in the APA’s Ethics Code to specifically prevent psychologists from manipulating children using digital machines, especially if such influence is known to pose risks to their well-being. Moreover, the APA should follow its Ethical Standards by making strong efforts to correct the misuse of psychological persuasion by the tech industry and by user experience designers outside the field of psychology.
There is more the psychology profession can and should do to protect children and rectify the harm being done to kids. It should join with tech executives who are demanding that persuasive design in kids’ tech products be regulated. The APA also should make its powerful voice heard amongst the growing chorus calling out tech companies that intentionally exploit children’s vulnerabilities. And the APA must make stronger and bolder efforts to educate parents, schools, and fellow child advocates about the harms of kids’ overuse of digital devices.
With each passing day, new and more influential persuasive technologies are being deployed to better take advantage of children’s and teens’ inherent limitations. The psychology profession must insist in this new age that its tools be used to improve rather than hinder children’s health and well-being. By making a strong statement against the exploitive use of persuasive design, the APA and the psychology profession can help provide the conscience needed to guide us in this age of dangerously powerful digital machines.
“我们打电话给警察，因为她弄坏了她的房间，还打了她的妈妈…都是因为我们拿了她的手机,” Kelly的爸爸解释道. 他说警察到来的那个晚上,Kelly已经心神错乱,并且告诉一名警官说她想自杀. 因此他们叫来了救护车, 这个15岁的女孩被绑在了轮床上, 被带到了精神病院,并且在被释放前都进行安全监控.住院几天后, Kelly被她的父母带到了我的办公室,他们想为他们陷入困境的女孩寻求帮助
Kelly的父母先开口说话了. 他们说, 他们女儿的住院治疗是她手机痴迷引发的长达一年的恶性循环的结果. Kelly曾一直拒绝与家人共度时光,或者专注于学校. 相反的, 她喜欢在社交媒体上过自己的生活. 曾经是一个快乐的女孩,坚强的学生, Kelly现在已经变得易怒,沉闷,还带着下降的成绩单回家.Kelly的父母在前几个月已经试过很多次限制他们女儿使用手机的次数,但是她越来越挑衅和欺骗,甚至整晚都在偷看手机。
当Kelly最近的成绩单显示她那些不及格的成绩的时候,她的父母感觉到不得不采取行动了.他们在当天下午早些的时候告诉Kelly, 他们已经叫了警察,她需要在晚上9点前把手机上交. 但是时间到了的时候, Kelly拒绝了, 她和父母之间发生了一些推搡,在暴力事件之后, 女孩被送进了医院。
我问坐在角落里的Kelly, 请她帮我理解她关于那个晚上(发生的事情)的看法. 她没有回答我,相反的，她瞪着她的父母. 但接着, 让房间里每个人都很意外的是,她哭诉道,” 他们抢走了我该死的手机！”试图让Kelly参与对话, 我问她喜欢她手机和社交媒体里的哪些东西.”它们让我觉得很快乐.”她回答道。
随着接下来几个月, Kelly和她的家人与我持续的约见, 两个问题主导了我们的会面. 第一个是Kelly对手机不健康的依恋继续存在,在家里造成了几乎持续的紧张氛围. 第二个问题出现在我和凯利的父母单独见面的时候. 尽管他们是有爱和参与的父母，凯利的母亲却忍不住觉得他们辜负了他们的女儿,并且一定是做了一些非常错误的事情导致了她的问题。
在我作为一个儿童和青少年心理学家的实践里，非常多是像凯利这样的家庭. 这些父母说他们的孩子过度使用手机，视频游戏和社交媒体是他们面临的最困难的育儿问题-而且，在很多情况下，这些正在拆散他们的家庭. 十几岁的孩子和青少年女孩拒绝离开手机,尽管很明显这些设备让他们痛苦不堪.我也看到了太多的男孩子痴迷游戏,导致他们放弃对学校，课外活动和其他任何有益的事物的兴趣. 其中一些男孩，因为他们到了十几岁的青少年，使用他们的强大的身躯来恐吓那些试图设定游戏限制的父母. 贯穿其中许多案件的一个共同点是父母的负罪感，因为很多人认为肯定是他们做了一些事情让他们的孩子走上了破坏性的道路。
这些父母都不明白的是，他们的孩子和青少年对科技的破坏性的痴迷，是科技行业与心理学之间几乎未被承认的合并的可预见的结果. 这一联盟将消费科技行业的巨额财富与最复杂的心理学研究结合起来, 这使得开发具有类似毒品效力的社交媒体、视频游戏和手机的成为可能，从而诱惑年轻用户。
坐落在加州帕洛阿尔托斯坦福大学校园里的一栋不起眼的建筑里，是斯坦福大学的劝导技术实验室，成立于1998年。该实验室的创建者， B.J. Fogg博士是一位心理学家，也是劝导技术之父，在这个学科中，数字机器和应用程序——包括智能手机、社交媒体和视频游戏——被配置为改变人类的思想和行为。正如该实验室的网站大胆宣称的那样：“机器被设计用来改变人类。”
虽然说服技巧在成人身上效果很好，但它们在影响仍然成熟的儿童和青少年大脑方面特别有效。 “电子游戏比我们文化中的任何东西都要好，它能给人们带来回报，尤其是青少年。”Fogg 说“十几岁的男孩天生就会寻求能力。去掌握我们的世界，在事物上做得更好。电子游戏，在分发奖励的时候，可以向人们传达他们的能力在增长，每一秒你都在变得更好。这是一种说服性的设计，它帮助说服了这一代的男孩，他们通过在游戏网站上花费无数的时间来获得“能力”，而可悲的现实是，他们被锁在房间里玩游戏，无视学校，不发展大学和雇主所要求的现实世界的能力。
文章作者Bianca Bosker说，凯西对手机的痴迷是有代价的，指出，“女孩的手机，无论是Facebook、Instagram还是iMessage，都在不断地把她从家庭作业、睡眠或与家人的谈话中拉出来。”凯西说，她希望她能放下电话。但她做不到。 “我会在早上醒来，然后去Facebook…因为,” 她说,“这不是我想要这样或者不想要这样。我只是继续。我,就好像,是被迫去做的。我不知道为什么。我需要这样做。Facebook占据了我的整个人生。”
Fogg可能不是一个家喻户晓的名字，但是财富杂志称他为“你应该知道的新导师”，他的研究正在推动世界范围内的用户体验（UX）设计师，他们利用并扩展他的劝导式设计模型。正如福布斯杂志作家Anthony Wing Kosner所指出的，“在当前这一代用户体验（UX）设计师中，没有人能像斯坦福大学的研究员B.J. Fogg那样有影响力。”
这些科技高管提出的一个主题是，该行业不公平地使用说服技术来获得利润优势。“消费者互联网企业是在利用心理学，”前Facebook副总裁Chamath Palihapitiya在B.J. Fogg斯坦福大学的讽刺演讲中说。“我们想要从心理上知道如何尽快地控制你，然后再给回你多巴胺的刺激。”
拥有自己的孩子可以改变科技行业高管的视角。曾供职于苹果公司的Tony Fadell，被认为是iPad之父，也是iPhone的鼻祖。他还是Nest的创始人和现任CEO。“很多20多岁的设计师和程序员在创造这些东西的时候都没有孩子。现在他们有了孩子，” Fadell在伦敦的设计博物馆演讲时说。”他们看到了发生了什么，他们说，’等一下。’ 他们开始重新思考他们的设计决策。”
消费科技行业如何应对这些要求变革的呼声？通过使产品“更年幼化”，Facebook最近推出了Messenger Kids，这是一款5岁孩子都可以使用的社交媒体应用。暗示有害的说服性设计现在正在对非常年幼的孩子进行磨练, 这是Messenger Kids总监，Shiu Pei Luu的宣言“我们想要帮助促进Facebook上的交流，让这成为你想要做的最令人兴奋的事情。”
Facebook对童年的狭隘观念反映出，社交网络和其他消费科技公司是如何与日益困扰的一代的需求脱节的。对于小孩子来说，最“令人兴奋的事情”应该是和家人在一起，在户外玩耍，参与创造性游戏，以及其他重要的发展经历——而不是被卷入手机或平板电脑的社交媒体漩涡中。此外，Facebook Messenger Kids在社交媒体上早早就开始了有线生活，我们知道这些社交媒体会给年龄较大的孩子带来抑郁和与自杀相关行为的风险。
为了响应Facebook的Messenger Kids发布,非商业化童年的运动(CCFC)向Facebook发送了一封由许多健康倡导者签名的信，呼吁该公司取消该应用程序。Facebook尚未回复这封信,而是继续积极地为年幼的孩子推销Messenger Kids。
在没有得到父母同意的情况下操纵孩子的利益，并驱使孩子们花更多的时间在那些导致情感和学术问题的设备上，这是不道德的心理实践的体现。硅谷的公司和支持他们的投资公司都是由高度特权的白人男性组成的，他们使用隐蔽的精神扭曲技术来控制毫无防备的孩子们的生活。强调这一不平等问题的是特里斯坦哈里斯，他说：“历史上从未有过50个主要是男性，主要是20到35岁的人，大部分是白人工程师，在我们现在的硅谷50英里范围内，控制着10亿人的想法和行动。”哈里斯在2017年2月接受记者Kara Swisher采访Recode Decode期间，讲述了他在Google期间所做的演讲摘录。
Salvation by Faith Through Grace
圣 经 研 习
The Study of Scripture
Accountability and Eternal Rewards(Word .doc) Download (PDF File) Download
The Death/Life Option(Word .doc) Download (PDF File) Download
You Can Be Eternally Secure(Word .doc) Download (PDF File) Download
You Can Be Sure(Chinese) Download (English) Download
The Rise and Growth of the Clergy
格兰特 （F. W. Grant）
The Why and How of Child Discipline
How To Seek The Lord – One Practical Idea
What Do You Seek In Life?
To Read or Not to Read?
Abel and Cain
Election – God choosing you in Christ
完全 或者 忠实的?
Perfection or Faithfulness?
You and Your Thoughts──The power of right thinking
雷梅博士 (Dr. Earl D. Radmacher) 著 左同文 黄宗石 译
How To Tell If You’re In Love – 10 Tests For True Love
雷梅博士 (by William W. Orr) 著 左同文 黄宗石 译
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|Test Number Two -||Test Number Two -|
|Test Number Three -||Test Number Three -|
|Test Number Four -||Test Number Four -|
|Test Number Five -||Test Number Five -|
|Test Number Six -||Test Number Six -|
|Test Number Seven -||Test Number Seven -|
|Test Number Eight -||Test Number Eight -|
|Test Number Nine -||Test Number Nine -|
|Test Number Ten -||Test Number Ten -|
迈尔斯·斯坦福（MILES J. STANFORD）
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|Chapter Two -||Chapter Two -|
|Chapter Three -||Chapter Three -|
|Chapter Four -||Chapter Four -|
|Chapter Five -||Chapter Five -|
|Chapter Six -||Chapter Six -|
|Chapter Seven -||Chapter Seven -|
|Chapter Eight -||Chapter Eight -|
|Chapter Nine -||Chapter Nine -|
|Chapter Ten -||Chapter Ten -|
Love Languages - Gary Chapman
隨著時日的增長﹐夫妻在婚姻中共有的 人事物會越來越多(小孩﹑財產﹑家 庭﹑親友﹑共同的回憶﹑共同渡過的 歲月…)﹐但是最重要的是夫妻之間的愛情是否越來越深﹑越醇﹑
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