Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Keeping The Faith - Online

The local tabloid, TODAY, in an article dated yesterday, entitled "Keeping the faith - online", reported on the phenomenon of "internet churches":

"The World Wide Web has become the hottest place to build a church. A growing number of congregations are creating Internet sites that are fully interactive, with a dedicated Internet pastor, live chat in an online "lobby", Bible study, one-on-one prayer through instant messaging and communion (viewers use their own bread and wine or water at home)."

Personally, I like the concept of an "internet church" although I do attend a "regular" church. I believe that this is what the world wide web was created for - the spreading and sharing of the gospel. The internet is a very useful tool to reach the previously unreachable, eg. those living in remote or sparsely populated places, or those who are incapacitated who are now able to participate in a church service as long as they have access to the internet.

Some Christians might think that the internet church encourages Christians to be lazy, to stay at home on Sunday instead of going to church (the physical one). I say if the Christian doesn't want to go to church, then let the church come to the Christian; at least he can still feed on the Word, and I believe when he has fed enough, he will eventually want to go to a regular church as well for even more feeding.

On a personal note, while I have not "attended" an internet church service before, I have watched and listened to sermons from great preachers like Andrew Wommack (a lot) and Joel Osteen (a little). I would probably not have been able to ever hear them speak in my lifetime (unless they come to preach in Singapore) and learned so much from them if not for the internet. I have also made a lot of new friends on cyberspace, linked by the gospel of grace and facebook ;-)

We do not need to fear that the internet church will replace the regular church because both have their roles to play and both complement each other. I foresee that New Creation Church will have to involve the internet in its church services soon as the church expands beyond the shores of Singapore. Even within the shores of Singapore, the church is growing at such a fast rate that by the time we move to our new and bigger premises at one-North, the church will probably be operating at close to full capacity, and will eventually need (not "overflow rooms" like at present but) overflow off-site premises.

The internet has been abused by the devil for a long time (pornography, terrorism, etc) but it is time now for the Church to aggressively make use of the internet for the glory of God. Amen?


Angie said...

Amen! :D

blogpastor said...

Yes the church has to use the internet for the glory of God and as usual America is ahead of us in Asia in this respect.