Evangelism is taking a new dimension, that is digital evangelism. The digital world gave us this opportunity. We are getting connected all over the world with our digital devices, that is why we must use this opportunity to also talk about Christ.
We cannot talk about digital evangelism and we won’t mention the models. That is the way by which we carry out digital evangelism.
The internet world is both for broadcasting and interaction, both are useful for evangelism. Before social media, the church has been using broadcasting channels like television, radio, magazines, and others to convey the message of the Gospel. However, social media brought a new interactive era.
Let’s look at the broadcasting model and also the interactive model, and ways we use them on the internet world for evangelism
1. Broadcasting Model
The advent of the broadcasting model of evangelism to the 15th century when the printing press started. The development also gave way for Christian preachers to print their messages and send to everywhere.
During this time was the Bible was written in hard copy material we can see today.
So, the broadcasting model has been in existence before the internet world. I have done various research and concluded that the majority of our churches still use this method as our strategy online.
It may work just for transmitting messages to the receiver but I can tell you, it won’t be effective for evangelism.
Many a time we compare the physical world with the digital world, it is an aberration to do that. Both worlds have different cultures. Some rules that apply in the digital world cannot be fit in the physical world.
Broadcasting is just the transmitting of information from a giver to a receiver. Most times there aren’t interactions, only transmitting. Though I will be using both instances on my blog as you read on.
Modern Tools of Broadcasting Models
We have some archaic tools of broadcasting models of evangelism that are still much relevant in this age. Examples include televisions, radios, newspapers, magazines, and many more.
Preachers use these methods to get the Gospel to the door of millions. Numerous souls were won to the sheepfold even till today. These means also gave birth to many tele-evangelist or columnist evangelists we have today.
However, in this age, there is a more excellent way, the digital evolution. The internet innovation gave a more advanced approach to these methods and made it easier thereby producing such tools as
- Facebook Live
- YouTube Live
- Other streaming platforms
These platforms are good for digital evangelism but there is a more excellent way we can win souls for Christ in the digital world (online).
Why broadcasting model is not effective
- Evangelism requires interaction but broadcasting model only gives you the freedom to transmit information not to get feedback
- Broadcasting model is most suitable for streaming of church events not for evangelism
- It is difficult to know those we have given their life to Christ
Pro Tip: When using the broadcasting model for evangelism, I would recommend you give a contact detail for people who will need follow-up. It is called Call To Action (CTA). It might be a number of your Pastor or a general email for people to contact.
2. Interactive Model
The ineffectiveness of the broadcasting model will make me talk more about the interactive model.
Let me start this discussion with Jesus and the Samaritan woman. It was recorded in the Bible that Jesus won a whole city for God but started with a “conversation.”
When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, “Will you give me a drink?” John 4:4
Jesus was doubted when He keep telling the people that He is the Messiah. It, therefore, brings a lot of questions for Jesus to answer.
Do you remember the Ethiopian Eunuch?
How about Nicodemus the Pharisee?
Many others came to Jesus for a conversation. Some got saved while some does not because …The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 2 Cor. 4:4
You will also see such instances in the digital world. I will talk about that later.
If you want to be a digital missionary or a digital evangelist, you must be ready to employ the interactive model of digital evangelism.
What is Interactive Model of Digital Evangelism
It is the direct involvement of communication with a person or a group of people with the sole aim of sharing the Gospel with them.
The difference between the broadcasting and interactive model is that the former only involves transmitting information to the receiver while the latter direct communication with the person.
If we want to share Christ effectively, we must be involved in the process of communication
To be interactive means influencing each other.
- Who are we influencing? UNBELIEVERS
- Why are we influencing them? TO KNOW CHRIST
- What are we using to influence them? THE GOSPEL
Why should you use an interactive model?
- Just like Ethiopian eunuch, it gives opportunity for people to ask questions for clarification
- You get to know who you are sharing Christ with
- It is a foundation for discipleship
- It gives room for follow up. Some people may not give their life to Christ that same day. It is easy to follow up the person
- You can continue a chat from where you stopped. The chat history is available to catch up with the previous discussion
1. DISCUSSION STARTER
An invitation for the engagement should start from somewhere.
To the Samaritan woman, it is “…Will you give me a drink?” John 4:4
To the Ethiopian eunuch, it is “…Do you understand what you are reading?” Acts 8:30
To Nicodemos, it is “…Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again” John 3:3
Many other examples are in the Bible
A discussion starter must appeal to emotions or an inquisitive mindset of a person.
Examples of discussion starter questions are
- You feel like committing suicide? There is more for you to accomplish. Let’s talk about it
- Do you feel something is missing in your life? Jesus can feel in the gap. Tell me what’s missing
- Do you think there is life after death?
All discussion must lead to one end, JESUS
People want to talk about their problems and about their beliefs, giving them a platform to express themselves will be a way of inviting them to engagement and from there you can easily lead them to Christ. For some who are trying to find their way in Christ, that will be an opportunity to lead them to Christ.
2. REQUEST FOR PRAYER
The world needs healing, many people you are seeing with beautiful pictures online are broken and hurt people who need healing, both believers and unbelievers. Requesting to pray for them is a way of engaging them.
Show some love, let them know we really care, ask to pray with them
You can use some of my ready-made graphics to request prayer from people.
This is an evergreen method of digital evangelism. Nobody will resist being prayed for.
Before you do this, say a word of prayer for them that their heart will be receptive to the word of God through you.
When people send their prayers, find a time to pray with them and keep on praying for them. After that, you can engage the person and find a way to ensure the person is saved. If not, it is time to talk about Christ. Remember, the goal is to know Christ
There are other ways to invite people for evangelical conversations. I will be talking more about it as you follow the updates on my blog
In this model, you can use digital platforms and tools like
- Facebook Pages and Groups
- WhatsApp Messenger
- You Version Bible App
- Facebook Messenger
- Google Meet
Social media is not a tool for broadcasting but for interaction. When approaching the digital world for evangelism, we must ensure that our goal is to engage people and be ready to give answers to the hope that we have received
Our churches need to pitch their tent online, create websites that talk about Christ, answer questions, provide answers to questions people are searching daily on search engines, build a community of believers online, develop a digital church and fill the digital world with the knowledge of Christ
We can only do this when we inculcate ourselves in the culture of the digital world which has its heart in interaction.