Social Media as a Tool for Evangelism

Introduction

In Matthew 28:19, Jesus gave His disciples a Great Commission saying, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” Today, 2,000 years later, the Seventh-day Adventist Church faces the challenge of how to effectively continue this mission as the means of communication evolve.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/11775

I once read about a pastor/theologian who was asked by someone if he could share the gospel with them. His response: “Do you have about an hour?”

This article seems to reflect how truly shallow our communication is, that we think we can share authentic, substantive spirituality in memes or soundbites on TikTok or Instagram. This not only grows out of the age of social media in which we live, but the reducing of the gospel to formulas for evangelism over the years, i.e. Four Spiritual Laws, Sinner’s Prayer, etc. I guess as a bare minimum intro done creatively to catch attention it could have some value. But, in terms of sharing anything substantive, not really.

This also brings up the issue of what evangelism and sharing Christian faith are really all about. The above model assumes it is the passing on of information. Assumedly correct information. I think this misses the point of what Christian faith even is. While information is part of it, it is more fully relational. Faith that reaches out in love to others is the best and fullest communication of the truth of the gospel. It’s what makes the information real. As long we keep thinking that transmission of a body of doctrine or info is the point, we miss the point. Tok Tok videos can get something across. It can’t build friendships, relationships, or communicate love that touches people personally… in person with skin on.

Isn’t that where the focus really needs to be, rather than on what sounds like the latest evangelistic gimmick?

Frank

Social media, like our book and magazine publishing, provides an opening that requires follow through. BTW, the name Wiedemann caught my attention. Just curious if Trisney might be related to the missionary couple who spent many years in the Philippines.

Mr and Mrs W. F. Wiedemann, of Iowa, sailed from San Francisco for the Philippines on January 14 [1922], Brother Wiedemann to take the leadership of the colporteur work in the Southern Islands.

–The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, Vol. 99 Takoma Park, Washington, D. C., January 26, 1922 No 4, p 32

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