I love the phrase “For such a time as this.” For such a time as this God has placed you here with your ministry alongside this social media technology. And it makes me think of Galatians 4:4 where Paul writes, “But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son.”
This is a powerful verse because it reminds me that God wasn’t operating nilly-willy as if His attitude was, “Well I’m just going to wait until whenever and then pop Jesus on the scene.” It wasn’t at all like that. Rather God looked at the time, looked at the world, saw it’s geopolitical landscape, observed the technological advancement of the Roman Roads and the Koine Greek language both uniting the known world in a way never before possible, looked at the diaspora of the Jews spread across the Roman Empire, looked at the Pax Romana, the Roman Peace established by Caesar Augustus and then said, the time has come.
God worked within the timing of the world so that when all of the elements were in place, God said, “Okay, now I’m going to send my Son.”
In terms of communication technology alone the Roman roads allowed the Christians to travel at relative ease and in relative safety compared to previous generations. And writing instruments had become easily accessible allowing the Apostle Paul and others to write about the gospel and to send the message around the empire. And the common language established by Alexander the Great allowed the message to reach the understanding of more people than ever thought possible prior to that time.
And in the sixteenth century the Church continued its trend of being an early adaptor of technology.
When the printing press was invented the first book printed on it was the Bible, allowing for greater distribution of the scriptures than ever imagined. And when you look at that era, it seems like God’s time was perfect with the spread of the Bible and other Christian literature reaching more lives than ever before.
And today a communication technology has been invented that surpasses anything ever imaged at any point in history. Simply put, it’s social media. And we cannot escape the fact that God has placed you and your church and the people in your church, here, today, alongside this social media technology.
For such a time as this, God has placed you and your church here today. And there’s this concept of virality, of when something goes viral on YouTube or on Facebook or on Reddit or on Twitter. When an idea, a message, whether it’s funny or emotional or serious and thought-provoking, is so impacting that people can’t help but share it.
TedTalks are some of the most powerful talks in the world by leading experts in any given field. And I love their tagline: “Ideas Worth Sharing.” TedTalks often get millions of views and thousands of shares on social media worldwide.
So let me ask you this: is there any idea worth sharing that is greater than the gospel of Jesus Christ? Think about that for a moment. It almost seems as though this viral nature of social media was tailor-made for the gospel.
- People share stuff that touches them.
- People share stuff that inspires them.
- They share stuff that motivates them.
- They share stuff that challenges them.
And the gospel does all of those things and so much more. Brandon Cox in his book Rewired put it this way:
The capacity for [the] dispersion [of the gospel] is broader than ever. While the apostles utilized the Roman roads, we take advantage of the advent of the internet age and the wonder of the social media revolution.
The social media revolution isn’t coming. It’s already here. The social media age isn’t arriving, it has arrived. And with the viral nature of the internet and with the social media technology local churches need to face to question head on, will we embrace it for God’s Kingdom and Glory? Will we be good stewards with the ministry God has entrusted us with?
Question: Has your church embraced social media? Does it have a social media strategy? Or do you see social media as a pointless endeavour? You can leave a comment by clicking here.