A couple of months ago I was browsing the Internet when I found a cool website for young people named “Pope to You” . On this site, visitors can find the latest news about Benedict XVI, a Facebook application to hear his words, see photos and receive his messages, watch videos on YouTube and follow his activities in the world through iPhone and iPod Touch.
It is a fact that we are living in a world of daily technological changes that even affect the way we live religion. It is the time that Daniel prophesied about: “But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase” (Daniel 12:4). Why the people are running to and fro? The Bible answers: “'Behold, the days are coming,' says the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine on the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD.” (Amos 8:11). People need to know about the message of salvation and technology is a powerful way to reach them.
There is a video  on YouTube produced for The Third Annual Media Convergence Forum 2009  with the following interesting facts about how technology is changing the world: over 1,000,000 books are published worldwide every year; a Google Book Search scanner can digitize 1,000 pages every hour. American have access to 1,000,000,000,000 web pages and 65,000 iPhone apps. Newspaper circulation is down 7 million over the last 25 years, but in the last 5 years, unique readers of online newspapers are up 30 million. In 2009 traditional advertising declined but digital advertising grew rapidly. The number of unique visitors to ABC, NBC and CBS get every month, collectively is 10 million; the number of unique visitors to mySpace, YouTube, and Facebook get every month, collectively is 250 million. The average American teen sends an average of 2,272 text messages per month. Nokia manufactures 13 cell phones every second. 93% of U.S. adults own a cell phone.
Based on these facts related to nowadays technology, I ask myself: What can we do as Adventist geeks to explode technology at the highest dimension to support the Adventist mission? How can we shake the world with technology such as Paul and Silas did at their time (Acts 16:20)? These are some ideas:
- First of all, we need to pray to receive the Holy Spirit in order to empower the Adventist mission with technology. Remember that the power that came from above to the disciples in the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-4) was the engine that moved them to preach to thousands and to make great miracles.
- God can use any technological skill you have and convert it into something great! Just like in the miracle of feeding 5,000 people with five loaves and two fish, “God often uses the simplest means to accomplish the greatest results” .
- Technology may change but the message is always the same (Revelations 14:6). Whether you use Facebook, Twitter, or blogs to spread the gospel, they are only mediums, not the message itself.
- Two heads think better than one. We need to create teams of Adventist geeks to share ideas and work together in common international projects. For example, let's support Adventist Forge , a repository of software components (similar to Google Code ) that can be accessed by Adventist technologists around the world in order to share their knowledge and at the same time get advantage of others' knowledge.
- Let's teach technology-related courses in Adventist churches and schools. For example, we can teach our pastors and teachers how to use cheap technologies with a high positive impact, such as blogs, podcasts, and free software (for a complete list of free software, please visit ).
- Show the message in an interactive and attractive way. We can broadcast evangelistic meetings and podcasts with sermons and weeks of prayer, and create Facebook groups to share experiences and study the Bible.
Can you imagine in the near future to have a group of free software components and applications for Adventist schools, universities, churches, unions, etc.? Besides, if we work as a team we will avoid the problem of “reinventing the wheel.” It means to avoid building technological projects in the church that have already been created somewhere else.
This is the right time for Adventist geeks to take advantage of technology. If we do not act now, others will do it!
Revelations 18:1, 2 warns us of an spiritual polarization. The bad will be extremely bad and the good extremely good. Just like Pr. Mark Finley says, we are in the middle of a cosmic battle for the domain of our minds. Are we going to lift up Jesus from the earth using technology (John 12:32)? Are we going to impact the world joining our technological skills and knowledge to the service of God, just like a candle in the middle of the darkness (Matthew 5:14)? Time is close to the end and also our opportunity as Adventist geeks (1 Corinthians 13:8). ***** Harvey Alférez, M.Sc., is Lecturer and Coordinator of the Research Department of the School of Engineering and Technology, at Montemorelos University, Mexico.
1. Pontifical Council for Social Communications. (2009). “Pope To You.” Retrieved 18 March 2010 from: http://pope2you.net 2. The Economist. (2009). “Did You Know? Version 4.0, Fall 2009.” Retrieved 18 March 2010 from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ILQrUrEWe8 3. The Economist. (2009). “Media Convergence Forum.” Retrieved 18 March 2010 from: http://mediaconvergence.economist.com 4. White, E.G. (1898). “The Desire of Ages.” Pacific Press Publishing Association, Nampa, Idaho. PP. 822. 5. Office of Global Software and Technology, General Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. (n.d.) “Adventist Forge.” Retrieved 18 March 2010 from: http://adventistforge.org 6. Google. (2010.) “Google Code.” Retrieved 18 March 2010 from: http://code.google.com 7. Free Software Foundation. (2000). “Free Software Directory.” Retrieved 18 March 2010 from: http://directory.fsf.org
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/2443