It's time for a new thing in global Christian missions

(Photo: Unsplash/Michael Daniels)

The Great Commission is what motivates Kingdom believers. We're called to go into the world and share Jesus' life, giving people the opportunity to have their own lives changed and daily purpose clarified.

When Jesus gave His command to His disciples to "...go and make disciples of all nations...", (Matthew 28 16-20 NIV), the only way then to reach people was to physically go into new areas and find places they congregated. This digital era in which we live presents different opportunities to reach people globally, and many would argue faster than ever before.

Last month, The Lausanne Movement released their global 'The State of the Great Commission' 2024 report. As I sat and listened to a presentation from Matthew Neirmann about the static historical and projected global size of Christianity over 150 years, the underwhelming reality of the flat line on the graph encouraged me to think, 'It is time for a new thing.' What catalysts can we use, and in which ways can we use them to pursue the mission of God's kingdom so all can know Jesus?

But what does it look like to tell Jesus' story in the modern world?

According to recent Statista data, the estimated number of internet users worldwide was 5.4 billion, this represents 67 per cent of the global population. According to the Global Web Index, the average time spent online daily is 6.5 hours.

The internet has made the world feel smaller in many ways. Digital or online evangelism is entering public spaces and sharing about the life, love and example of Jesus in a whole new way. There is still a significant need to physically go and share the message of Jesus with those who haven't heard, but in some cases where access is difficult, we must harness our technological landscape.

We need to awaken a larger pool of the global body of Christ and equip them to embrace innovative approaches to evangelism while remaining faithful to the timeless message of Jesus. Here are some ways we disciples can effectively share Jesus' story in a digital age.

  1. Utilize social media: By creating engaging content, sharing personal testimonies, and participating in online discussions, disciples of Jesus can reach those who may not otherwise encounter His message.
  2. Create multimedia content: Consider leveraging multimedia formats such as video, podcasts, and infographics to share the love of Jesus in dynamic ways. Visual content can provide opportunities for better engagement and possibly a deeper understanding of bible teachings.
  3. Engage with online communities: Joining online communities, forums, and discussion groups related to faith provides unique opportunities to connect with individuals. Sharing resources, offering support, and engaging in conversation is powerful.
  4. Develop a personalized approach: Recognize that different people have unique backgrounds, experiences, and questions about faith. Your approach should be tailored to address their specific concerns and needs.
  5. Provide authentic testimonies: Authenticity is key to effective digital evangelism. In a world of fake news, ensure what you are sharing is trustworthy. Share personal testimonies or authentic stories that resonate with audiences and can help them explore a faith journey.
  6. Offer resources and support: Provide digital resources such as Bible study guides, devotional material, and online prayer groups. Offering practical support and guidance can help people deepen, be introduced to, or navigate their relationship with God.
  7. Embrace emerging technologies: Stay abreast of emerging technologies such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence, and explore how these tools can be used as vehicles to tell stories and captivate audiences in the Gospel message.

Sharing the life and love of Jesus in a digital world requires a spirit of creativity, authenticity, and adaptability. If we do this, we can extend the reach of our collective voices as we share the love of Jesus with the world.

In the words of John Piper, "Don't wait for a feeling or love in order to share Christ with a stranger. You already love your heavenly Father, and you know that this stranger is created by Him... so take those first steps in evangelism because you love God. It is not primarily out of compassion for humanity that we share our faith or pray for the lost; it is first of all, love for God. In other words, it's not a question of 'if' we are called. We've already said yes. The only question is 'how' to do it in the context of today."

If we carry the Great Commission out with faithfulness to our God, we pray that it will lead others to come to know the transformative power of Christ in an increasingly interconnected world.

Jesus Film Project has several resources available to help you share the life-changing story of Jesus with the world around you. Go to for more information

Geoff Peters is Global Marketing Director of the film JESUS.