For a guy who came kicking and screaming into the smart phone era, I never imagined myself engaging in digital evangelism. However, a recent lunch meeting with a sharp, forward-thinking Kentucky Baptist pastor changed my perspective.
Digital evangelism is defined by the Center for Online Evangelism as “strategically using the internet, mobile and social media platforms to meet the needs of others and share the gospel with the online world.”
Methods of digital evangelism include creating a YouTube channel, responding to Facebook posts, writing an online blog or any number of other things that can be done online. The content you provide may not be overtly evangelistic, but you still may be able to point people to Jesus.
Unfortunately, many from my generation hear the term “digital evangelism” and start thinking about computer coding or trying to remember passwords for everything we do online.
According to the Center for Online Evangelism, of approximately 7 billion people in the world, 4 billion use the internet and 3 billion are on social media. They conclude, “Digital Evangelism helps us spread the gospel into all the world at a rate we never could’ve imagined before.”
Jonathan Carl, pastor of South Fork Baptist Church in Hodgenville, offers this suggestion to test the waters of digital evangelism. “This week try something new or be more intentional, prayerful or consistent. Post a scripture on social media. Make a video and reference your Lord. Text a friend and ask them how you can pray for them. Share a sermon or online Christian resource that impacted you. Encourage someone in the comments section of their post. Find someone on the fringe and bring Jesus to them.”
Pastor Jonathan advises those who want to venture into the online universe with the gospel to be creative, brave and loving. It should go without saying that we will want to treat people online with love and respect while realizing that what we say and the way we say it could be used of God to impact them for eternity’s sake.
I accepted Pastor Jonathan’s admonition and went to work. I shared a summary of my salvation story on Twitter and was amazed by the response. I responded to a friend on Facebook with a gospel message. I encouraged a brother who shared on social media that he was about to go into his community with the gospel. These were things I had not done as intentionally before, but will plan to continue doing in the future. Digital evangelism may not become your preferred way of sharing the gospel, but it is one way we can communicate the good news of Jesus to others.