The 10,000 digital disciples initiative, born in 2021, is an effort supported by the North American Division where Adventists of all ages who utilize social media are encouraged to use those platforms and their influence for good, with a goal of bringing people to Jesus, sharing the good news of His amazing grace and love, and providing opportunities for others to learn of the distinctive Seventh-day Adventist message of hope and wholeness.
In 2021, G. Alexander Bryant, in his North American Division Year-End Meeting (NAD YEM) president’s report, brought forth the three strategic focuses of multiply, mentorship, and media. Bryant stated that the NAD needs to explore opportunities to network and collaborate across all organizations to maximize and expand the utilization of media, which includes traditional media but also video, online media, and social media. As part of the social media aspect, the 10,000 digital disciples idea emerged.
Bryant was especially excited about including young people. “This is an area where we can allow our youth and young adults to help lead the way,” he said. “They use media like breathing. They do it intuitively.”
Bryant then broadened the net, saying that many have Facebook and other social media accounts, but that “we spend a lot of time sending pictures of what we ate yesterday. What if we could leverage that — all of those social media posts — into making an impact together for Christ? We would like to train and equip 10,000 digital missionaries to be part of this … to help maximize the strength of the network that we have.”
Following up on these ideas, in fall 2022, Bryant again asked the division membership, during the NAD YEM, “How we can use those social media platforms to advance the gospel of Jesus? That is what [the] initiative is about. … We’re going to train and equip them to go into the ‘new’ arena we call social media, and spread the love of Jesus Christ.”
In order to help instruct and prepare the division’s membership to maximize the potential of their social media presence, the Adventist Learning Community has engaged several experts to provide training through the following websites:
- Faith Made Social: Building Digital Disciples
- Discipulos Digitales | Aprende Redes Sociales Gratis
- Empty Views to a Million Views Master Class
And here is another training resource that was created a few years ago by the North American Division, available for purchase. Learn more:
The Bible and the writings of Ellen White urge us to reach out to others through communicating the Word, and this doesn’t just involve preaching from the pulpit, or the sharing of printed literature. Consider the following quotations as we move forward together in this social media discipleship initiative — and imagine if we applied the following principles to our digital posts.
“The power and efficiency of our work depend largely on the character of the literature that comes from our presses. Therefore great care should be exercised in the choice and preparation of the matter that is to go to the world. … Our energies should be devoted to the publication of literature of the purest quality and the most elevating character. Our periodicals must go forth laden with truth that has a vital, spiritual interest for the people” (Ellen G. White, Counsels to Writers and Editors, p. 11).
“And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matt. 24:14, NIV).