Elon Musk absolutely loves Twitter. He is one of the most prolific tweeter’s on this modern, media platform in the world. He certainly likes to speak his mind. I don’t know how he does it while also running multiple, big corporations. The Time Person of the Year, 2021, has the 6th most Twitter followers, presently at 91 million.
Elon says he’s not buying Twitter to make money, but to make it a better public square for discourse. The guy certainly has a lot of ideas. He says he’s a free speech absolutist, meaning he believes strongly in our Constitution’s First Amendment regarding free speech as long as people don’t break the nation’s laws while tweeting. Of course, Twitter is just about universal in the free world, with about a quarter of a trillion users. That raises the issue of free nations having different laws regarding freedom of speech.
Elon Musk gave an interview in 2018 to 60 Minutes saying, “Twitter’s a war zone. If somebody’s gonna jump in the war zone, it’s like, ‘Okay, you’re in the arena. Let’s go.’”
Most people want to be involved in the conversation in the town square from time-to-time; however, they want rules about being civil that supersede laws of government, which may be just about the bare minimum. Otherwise, they don’t want any part of it. That is, most people like PEACE, Elon, not WAR! Elon, you obviously relish in a war zone, in speech anyway.
Musk’s offer to buy Twitter may not go through. Then again, Elon may change his mind and not go through with the deal. His does that sometimes on pretty big issues. If he bails on this, it will cost him a severance fine of a billion dollars. But that’s not that much for a guy whose net worth is a quarter of a trillion dollars.
Yeah, I’m on Twitter, too. But I pretty much use it only to put my blog posts out there.
If this deal goes through, there likely will be a lot more chatter about how Musk will change Twitter. People access Twitter mostly through Google on the internet and Apple with its phones. Both have stringent rules about not spreading lies, misinformation, and inciting violence. Angelo Carusone of Media Matters, a watchdog group, says, “This could turn into one of those moments where you have an unstoppable force coming up against two immovable objects.” WOW! That’s cool.
This reminds me about war and peace with God. According to the Bible, human beings are alienated from their Creator, thus at war with him, until and if they make peace with him. How do I know this? God chose a nation, Israel, through which to reveal himself to humanity. Whether in divine blessing or cursing (e.g, Leviticus 26; Deuteronomy 28), Israel has been and still is a testimony to the God of the Bible, who I also believe is the God of Creation. And this God gave Israel the Ten Commandments as a summary of his Law/Torah by which to serve him.
But everyone should know that we, both Jew and Gentile, break those commandments, or at least some of them. That is why God also provided a temple for Israel and an altar for animal sacrifices for sins. For, the Jewish Bible says, by the word of Moses that came from God, “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you for making atonement for your lives on the altar; for, as life, it is the blood that makes atonement” (Leviticus 17.11 NRSV). Atonement means to gain peace by making reparation or reconciliation for wrongdoing.
I believe that peace of God is ultimately found by genuinely believing in Jesus dying on the cross for our sins. The author of the New Testament book, Hebrews, explains, “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins” (Hebrews 9.22). He continues, “it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins” (10.4). He then explains that that is why God sent Jesus to the cross–as a fulfillment of the symbolism of those animal sacrifices.
Just before Jesus was arrested, tried, and crucified, at the Last Supper with his disciples he instituted communion. It symbolized his subsequent atoning death for our sins. The apostle Paul relates that he took the bread and wine and said of them, “This is my body that is for you,” and “This cup is the new covenant in my blood” (1 Corinthians 11.24-25). Paul explains to true believers in Jesus sacrificial death for their sins, “since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5.1). Paul calls this “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding” (Philippians 4.7).
Although the believer in Jesus attains peace with God, that does not guarantee she or he will have peace in this life with all others. For, Jesus explained right after his Sermon on the Mount, “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father; and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household” (Matthew 10.34-36).
Jesus means that he and his mission would become controversial, perhaps like what Musk says of a Twitter “war zone.” Yet, the believer who shares his or her faith in Jesus with others ought to do it in love and peace and not with toxic language, hateful speech. Paul instructs believers, “Let your gentleness be known to everyone” (Philippians 4.5).
Interestingly, Elon Musk frequently asks people what they think is the meaning of life. He has said that when he was young, even as a child and a teenage, he devoured books about the meaning of life. In an interview three weeks ago with TED curator Chris Anderson, Elon said his “motivating philosophy” in life “is to understand what questions to ask about the answer that is the universe, to understand why we’re here, how we got here, what . . . is going on.” He added, “I think the ‘why’ of things is very important. Why mankind.”
For me, I believe there is a God who created us and made this universe. He wants us to know him, to believe in him, to worship him. And he has given us many signs by which to discover the truth about his existence. We need to open our eyes of understanding and ponder the many signs. I believe chief among them is God working through his chosen nation Israel, from whom the Savior of world, the most famous man who has ever lived, Jesus of Nazareth, emerged. That is where I believe we can find “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding.”