10 thoughts that will change what you think about Evangelism, Missions, and the Internet
At times, it’s personally been a challenge to completely reconcile my unique gifts with how it could directly be applied in the transformative process of salvation.
But thank God for the Internet, where I’ve really found my niche and where I’ve been able to maximize my time, attention, and resources! Our God is truly an amazing God who can use 1’s and 0’s to impact His Kingdom.
Not convinced? Here are 10 ways, as counted by John Edmiston, that the Internet is changing evangelism and missions…
Evangelism, Missions, and the Internet
1. InformationThe Internet is bringing an enormous amount of timely strategic information into the hands of even the smallest church or mission agency.
2. RatiocinationPeople “think aloud” in cyberspace. The theology and practice (including ecclesiology and missiology) of most Christians is now primarily formed as a peer-to-peer online process with occasional expert input.
3. ExplorationPeople do their private, personal, and controversial thinking online. If a person wants to find out about a suspected medical matter or investigate a forbidden political opinion, they first check it out online.
4. CollaborationThe Internet is facilitating collaboration across denominational boundaries and across national borders. Experts are now able to link up with other experts in fields such as church planting and theological education.
5. ValidationPeople use the Internet to check things out. This applies to everything from a “too-good-to-be-true” investment scam to the local church they plan to attend when they move to a new city.
6. Allocation of ResourcesThe Internet is allowing donors, foundations, and churches to efficiently assess projects and receive applications for funding across national boundaries.
7. ProclamationThe gospel is being proclaimed on Web sites, in chat rooms, on YouTube, on cell phones, and on numerous Internet-connected devices. Evangelistic crusades are using the Internet both as a decision mechanism and as a follow-up mechanism.
8. EducationOnline education has been a huge success and has revitalized Theological Education by Extension (TEE) and distance education.
9. MobilizationThe Internet facilitates making connections and imparting information and motivation necessary for effective mobilization of pastors, evangelists, and missionaries into the global harvest.
10. MultiplicationThe Internet brings leverage to networks and enables contacts to be made for the multiplication of house and cell churches, church-planting movements, and small TEE-based Bible colleges resourced via an Internet-based curriculum.
A great and comprehensive list! Read some more of John’s unabridged thoughts here.