We’re commanded to take the gospel into the world.
Unbelievers are never commanded to come to church; we are commanded to go wherever they are.
Like the apostle Paul, who noticed in Athens that the crowds were congregating on the Areopagus – Mars Hill – to talk, debate, and share the news and views of the day. So Paul went where the people were.
Consider this: Where are the people today? Football stadiums, for sure. And rock concerts, political rallies, airport terminals. But you can’t exactly go to those places and take over a microphone.
Where can you go where there a lots of people and you can say anything you want?
There’s one obvious answer: Facebook. In 2018, there were 2.32 billion Facebook users worldwide. Of that number, 1.49 billion access the site every day.
In the United States, we have 210 million on Facebook – 68 percent of the nation’s adults, with 51 percent of adults going to the site several times a day.
In Texas, we have 11.9 million folk on Facebook.
Lots of Christians are fairly negative about Facebook – and that’s understandable, because there’s lots of bad stuff at the site. But there was lots of bad stuff at Mars Hill, too. The place was dedicated to an idol and there was probably not one believer there the day Paul rose to speak.
So why did Paul go into that hotbed of heathenism? Because that’s where the people were.
At CCBC, we see Facebook as a ministry. Obviously, it’s a way we minister to the body – every day, there’s news about what’s up at the church. And our pastor does short videos every week, so you can always find encouragement and challenge on our Facebook page. We run pictures of activities to keep you abreast of what’s happening. We introduce our missionaries so you can know what they are doing and how to pray for them. We include current articles and Bible study helps so you can take a minute to focus on your own spiritual growth. And of course, we run cartoons – because we know you need a laugh during the day.
The strength of Facebook is that it’s interactive. It’s not just a bulletin board where we post announcements; it allows you to post responses and to ask questions, and to let people know they have been heard. Indeed, Facebook is an ideal tool to let people in the church communicate with each other during the week.
But we said Facebook was also an outreach tool. How? That’s where each Facebook user can participate in this vital ministry. Every day, you see new content on our Facebook page. Lots of it is obviously just for CCBC members and would have little interest to outsiders. But there are also announcements of upcoming activities and articles of interest to people outside the church.
When those appear in your news feed, share them. At the bottom of every item, there’s a line with three buttons representing three responses: Like …. Comment …. Share. If you Like something, you’re saying that you read it and appreciate it. You can hit Comment and put in your own two-cents-worth, or ask a question. Or, and here’s a way you can really get involved, you can hit Share, and share that item to your own Facebook wall.
For instance, you see a Facebook post about an upcoming theological seminar on the “problem” of evil. And the issue of how a good God could allow evil in the world is a question everyone has faced. If you have 200 friends, we guarantee that all 200 have wondered about that, probably on a regular basis.
So all you do is hit “Share” and post that to your wall. You can just share it with no comment, or you can write a line: Here’s a class my church is having on Sunday night. You’re invited – I’d love to see you there.
And that’s all there is to it. If you share it, your friends are likely to see it. And a few might share it with others. That multiplies your ministry.
Facebook is truly worldwide in its impact. Several months ago, we posted a picture of an event at the church – we posted it immediately after the service. Before most people had even left the building, our missionary to the Central African Republic, Adam Huntley, had responded. Our missionaries love to see what we’re doing – it makes them feel close to the church that has invested money and prayer in their ministry.
So if you’re on Facebook, please look for places where you can share what God is doing at CCBC. And at some point, you may see one of your Facebook friends show up at a worship service or Bible study. Plant that seed in their lives, and let God work through it.