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#GifBible: It’s a thing.

#GifBible: It’s a thing.

There’s already an emoji Bible (Episcopal Cafe story here), and perhaps we should have expected the next reasonable incarnation – #GifBible, the Twitter brainchild of the Reverend David Hansen, pastor of Spirit of Joy! Lutheran Church in Texas.

I shared a short Q&A with Pastor Hansen via e mail:


EC: When did the idea of #GifBible first occur to you – was it premeditated or spontaneous?

DH: #GifBible was completely spontaneous. I’m always looking for new images and insights into the Biblical text – ways of approaching the text that give me new insight. Sometimes it is specifically for an image that I can use in my preaching, and sometimes it is just for the sense of play that helps me to see the text in fresh ways.

This was one of those moments. As I looked through my feed, it struck me the way that a few gifs in my feed related to stories in the Bible – so I set out to find more.

Is it connected at all to Lenten discipline?

No, it is not connected to a Lenten discipline at all.

Do you plan to continue it all the way through Revelation?

Originally, there was was no plan. I just started in with Genesis 1:1, and had no idea how long it would take me or how far I would go. That first night, I got to Genesis 11 – and I knew I wanted to tell more of the story. Now, a week later, I’ve gotten through the Pentateuch, and it seems like the project has some real steam. I would really like to get all the way through Revelation – but there’s a long way to go.

What do you see as the most interesting possibilities/opportunities when bringing social media and theology together?

As preachers, we are called to interpret the message of Scripture so that it can be heard by people who speak the current cultural language. I like to think of this project as a translation project – it is a work that helps preachers in their understanding of both the cultural language of Scripture and the cultural language that surrounds us. Doing the project in a social setting allows even better insights as other people share their perspectives and ideas – allowing us to see the text not just through my lens but through the lenses of as many people as engage the project.


Meredith Gould, author of books including The Social Media Gospel and, most recently, Deliberate Acts of Kindness, has Storified the project here.

A few more excerpts from the #GifBible’s Ten Commandments:

Until next time…



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