Do blogs still matter?

Many of us make jokes about blogs, and specifically how they used to be a thing. They were what we used to share our reactions and engage with others before Twitter, before Substack paid newsletters, podcasts, and videos.

But blogs… they don’t matter anymore. Or at least we don’t think they do. They’re slow; unlike social media, they take you out of the moment. You can’t have an instant reaction on a blog. They take a lot of work.1 They require a kind of thoughtfulness, at least in theory, the kind that plays against all the algorithms.

Which is exactly why they matter.

Why I started blogging in the beginning

My start as a “real” writer came as a blogger. I started a site I eventually called Blogging Theologically back in 2009, which is about 1000 years ago in internet years. I was already working as a writer for a non-profit, despite having no experience. So my goal with the blog was to process my thoughts and develop my writing skills. Over time, people started reading what I wrote. I started getting better at writing as I went. People kept reading. That blog led me to where I am now: an author published multiple times over, a Canadian living in the United States, and actually working in publishing.

Why I stopped blogging (at least the way I had been)

Over time, as my life changed and as I began exploring other avenues of interest—like podcasting, I eventually had to scale back on my blogging. I went from twice daily for 4+ years to around 5-7 times a week for a while. Eventually as various concerns arose with my first employer in the United States, and as their demands on me grew, I found that the only thing I had time to do was write for work. So, with the exception of writing I was paid to do by outside entities, all of my blog writing wound up on the blog of the brand I managed, or other ones owned by my employer.

Why I started blogging again

When I left that job in the fall of 2021, I came back to a blog that had largely been gathering dust. I also came back to it more or less burnt out. So I took some time to think about what I wanted to actually do with it. Did I still care about blogging at all? Was it still important to me? Did it still help me in some way?2

As I considered these questions, I realized was that, yes blogs still matter. I didn’t (and don’t) like the jump to conclusions game that generates attention on the social internet. It’s an approach to public discourse that conflicts with my values, and I believe to be in direct opposition to God’s desires for humanity in general, and Christians in particular. We are to be people who are quick to listen and slow to speak. People who recognize that “with his speech the godless person destroys his neighbor, but by knowledge the righteous will be delivered” (Prov. 11:9 NET). I need to be better than that.

We need to be better than that.

Why I think blogs still matter

If we are Christians, we are called to build people up with our words. And to build people up, we need places where we can take our time to think through weighty matters. The social internet doesn’t reward that, but that shouldn’t matter. We need places where we can have a kind of silence from the pervasive noise that every other site brings. Blogs allow us to do that. They allow us to reflect, to be unburdened by the tyranny of the instant, and explore how the gospel should shape our lives, both proactively and reactively. From where I sit, there can never not be a need for that.

So will blogs ever hold the kind of importance they did back in the 2000s-2010s? Probably not. But that’s the wrong question, because it’s based on generating attention. And I don’t think that’s what a blog is supposed to do. The real question is, do blogs still matter? And if the point is to encourage others, to challenge them to think deeply and carefully, then the answer can only be yes.


Photo by Nick Morrison on Unsplash

  1. Which newsletters, podcasts, and videos also require, but whatever.[]
  2. This is all part of why I relaunched the site at the end of 2021.[]

Posted by Aaron Armstrong

Aaron is the author of several books including the Big Truths Bible Storybook, Epic Devotions, Awaiting a Savior: The Gospel, the New Creation, and the End of Poverty, and Contend: Defending the Faith in a Fallen World. His next book, published by Lexham Press, will release in Spring 2023.

Reader interactions

5 Replies to “Do blogs still matter?”

  1. […] Do blogs still matter? […]

  2. “And if the point is to encourage others, to challenge them to think deeply and carefully, then the answer can only be yes.”

    Thank you for this reminder as I struggle to get off my behind to re-start writing.

  3. Diane Bucknell March 22, 2022 at 9:54 am

    Awww, Aaron. It’s so good to hear from you. How sweet and refreshing to read this. I miss vintage blogging as well as the unique camaraderie so many of us found there. I agree, there’s still a place for blogging, and especially for those of us who have ditched social media.

    “We need places where we can have a kind of silence from the pervasive noise that every other site brings. Blogs allow us to do that. They allow us to reflect, to be unburdened by the tyranny of the instant”

  4. I got into this blogging business because someone on our staff left a gaping hole when he moved. I had not written except for lesson plans for my elementary students. Now after 7.5 yrs. I still do not see myself as a writer per se. However, I do the daily devotional on our Bible.org FB page and transfer from my own blog page to that. I have few followers and feel this is just a grinding operation with no eternal value except for me. I am struggling and need some advice on where to go from here. Any thoughts you might have I am open to them.

  5. Wonderful post Aaron. You laid it all out beautifully. Well said.
    I have followed your blog from the beginning. Glad you are still in the fray and thinking soundly. May the Lord continue to bless you and your family.

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