As I reflected on my post from Monday, I came to the conclusion that I was probably guilty of two faults: (1) Drawing a false dichotomy between blogging and evangelism and; (2) not emphasizing the goodness of Christian blogging as a ministry. Please forgive my carelessness. I will attempt to clarify these two issues in the following paragraphs.
Blogging and Evangelism
Under the heading Don’t Let Blogging Replace Clear, Biblical Priorities, I mentioned that one of those priorities that should not be set aside by blogging was evangelism. What I had in mind here was face-to-face evangelism like evangelism to neighbors, co-workers, family members and the like. This principle tied in to the previous heading, Don’t Let Blogging Outweigh Your Time With Others. However, I can see that this might be confusing because it almost sounds like engaging in dialog with an unbeliever through a blog, or through an email as a result of interaction on a blog, is not evangelism; or that true evangelism must only be done face-to-face. I do not think that is true. Evangelism does not necessarily need to be conducted face-to-face; it can happen through letters, blogs, email, phone, video, and other means.
In fact, I would go so far as to say that since we live in a digital age, where the Internet is almost a new kind of Piazza, Christians have massive opportunity to spread the gospel through their blogs. Our blogs can be a means by which we expound and proclaim the Christian faith, where we can interact with unbelievers about the content of our blog, and where we can provide spiritual resources to those who are under conviction and desire salvation.
What can happen, however, and what I am trying to guard us against, is that we can make the mistake of only doing virtual evangelism and gradually drift away from face-to-face evangelism. Why? Probably because it is easier to evangelize through the computer. The spears of anger, confrontation, and ridicule are significantly blunted when they have to pass from the keyboard to our monitors. We can take that, and even end up feeling pretty good about our “courage.” Let us not be deceived!
Blogging as a Ministry
As I tried to show in the previous few paragraphs, blogs can be used as a ministry to unbelievers. They can be used as a ministry to the Church as well. That is one thing I have tried to do with this blog: provide helpful spiritual resources to Christian men and women, both young and old. And there are a host of other blogs serving the Church with their book reviews, essays, personal thoughts, and links to other good websites. I believe this can be rich and effective ministry if done well and according to God’s Word. Again, my only warning is that we are careful to not allow our blog time prevail over our personal (face-to-face) interaction with others.
Yet, there are some precious members of the body of Christ who are relegated to a wheelchair, or who are mostly homebound because of disabilities, and who are rarely able to get out and about, who may find that they can have a fruitful ministry online hosting a blog or website. If this is your situation, and you have despaired of finding ministries with which you can serve others (or even if you have not yet despaired), then I would encourage you to pray and think about this as a possible ministry, while at the same time seeking out personal fellowship with other Christians as much as you are able.
So in even in above case, I realize I need to be careful to not draw such a hard and fast line with blogging. Some may sense a leading to spend more time working on their blog or website, some may choose to spend less. In either case, what is important is that we are being guided by biblical principles (like those I have tried to lay out, though somewhat clumsily, in the last post) as we think about blogging.
The Internet is a wonderful tool for evangelism and ministry; may we use it wisely, purposefully, fruitfully, and above all, for the glory of our Savior Jesus Christ.
Photo: David Lofink