On this episode of Group Answers, Chris and Brian talk to Bobby Gruenewald about the Bible and technology.
Bobby Gruenewald serves as Pastor, Innovation Leader at Life.Church and is the founder of the YouVersion Bible App, which has been installed in every country of the world. As one of the leading voices in the Church on innovation and the use of technology, Bobby has been featured in The New York Times, TechCrunch, CNN, and more. Prior to joining the Life.Church team in 2001, he started and sold two technology companies as well as served in advisory capacities for various startups and venture capital funds. Bobby and his wife, Melissa, live in Edmond, Oklahoma with their four children.
- Tell us about your journey from rapper/entrepreneur to pastor.
- What was the impetus behind creating YouVersion?
- Why do you think people struggle with consistent engagement with the Bible?
- What do you say to people who have issues with others reading the Bible digitally?
- The opportunity for community is built into the YouVersion app. How can small groups take advantage of it to encourage and challenge each other?
- How can Bible Plans help people engage with the Bible on a deeper level?
- What is next for technology and the Church?
We were beginning to connect with Scripture more consistently in places we had not done that before.
It’s been a sprint of us racing to keep up with what God’s doing.
For many people, I think the Bible is a bit intimidating.
There are some things about technology that give some new opportunities for people to experience Scripture in different formats that have been very helpful for people in their consistency and their engagement.
The Bible has changed formats many times over the last few thousand years.
There are many people today who still cannot read Scripture in their own heart language.
It’s difficult today to have meaningful conversations around Scripture in some of the more public social media environments. We wanted to create a safe place for that conversation to take place.
We just see technology as a tool that can be used for the Gospel.
Church leaders need to be asking the right questions.
Sometimes the most effective thing to do is write it on a piece of paper.
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The Group Answers Podcast is a weekly show designed to resource, train, and encourage small group leaders. Each episode considers current trends and resources as well as timeless truths and methods of discipleship. It is hosted by Brian Daniel, a Bible study and discipleship expert in Lifeway’s Groups Ministry, and Chris Surratt, the small group and discipleship specialist at Lifeway and author of Leading Small Groups.