Preaching

What About Your Message?

Great emphasis is placed upon the message given by the preacher during the church’s worship services. Rightly so I suppose. But have you ever stopped to think about how easily the “preacher’s message” gets outnumbered even if only two or three of the saints come together?

Parents preach a message to their children every time they intentionally miss the worship services.

A message gets preached to our “neighbor” sitting near us every time we refuse to sing or flippantly observe communion.

Elders preach a message when they fail to tend the flock that they’re responsible for.

Oh yes, we all preach a message at every worship service of the church – and most of the time we do it without even speaking a word. And when we think about it like this, we’ll always get the last word with the preacher. EA

In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother. For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another,1 John 3:10-11

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5 Ways to Persuade Others

With warnings of the judgment:

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences.“(2 Corinthians 5:10-11)

With a personal example:

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Now I myself am confident concerning you, my brethren, that you also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.” (Romans 15:13-14)

With the promise of life:

Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God, who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began, but has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ, who has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel, to which I was appointed a preacher, an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles. For this reason I also suffer these things; nevertheless I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day.” (2 Timothy 1:8-12)

With the love of God:

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:31-39)

And with the good news:

Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is preached to you the forgiveness of sins; and by Him everyone who believes is justified from all things from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses. Beware therefore, lest what has been spoken in the prophets come upon you: ‘Behold, you despisers, marvel and perish! For I work a work in your days, a work which you will by no means believe, though one were to declare it to you.’” So when the Jews went out of the synagogue, the Gentiles begged that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath. Now when the congregation had broken up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. On the next Sabbath almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God.” (Acts 13:38-44)

These ways worked to convert a dying world in the past, and these ways still work to help persuade the perishing today. EA  

Now as he thus made his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, “Paul, you are beside yourself! Much learning is driving you mad!” But he said, “I am not mad, most noble Festus, but speak the words of truth and reason. For the king, before whom I also speak freely, knows these things; for I am convinced that none of these things escapes his attention, since this thing was not done in a corner. King Agrippa, do you believe the prophets? I know that you do believe.” Then Agrippa said to Paul, “You almost persuade me to become a Christian.” And Paul said, “I would to God that not only you, but also all who hear me today, might become both almost and altogether such as I am, except for these chains.”” Acts 26:24-29

There are going to be times when the preacher just won’t win…with people

“‘Preacher, shoot it straight’ – as long as you’re not shooting at me, my spouse, my children or my parents. But other than that, ‘Keep shooting preacher man.'”

There are going to be times when the preacher just won’t win…with people.

Oh yeah, those times when silence during a certain situation gets looked upon by some with contempt, while speaking up during the same situation garners the same amount of contempt from others. It’s true: it’s the ole’ “condemned if you do and condemned if you don’t” situation, to put it nicely. This is why the preacher’s goal must not be to win with people during every situation, because that goal will miss the goal the majority of the time.

So think about that the next time you feel like the preacher took a personal shot at you, when all he was doing was speaking the truth for your benefit in a way that’s probably not as personal as you think (1 Corinthians 10:32-33; Galatians 1:10). EA

I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: Preach the word! Be ready in seasonand out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.” (2 Timothy 4:1-4)

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