Phillip Brooks defined preaching as “the bringing of truth through personality”. The preacher is not only a herald, but also a witness. He has personally experienced the power of God’s truth in his own life and therefore can share it with others.
The incarnation of Christ is evidence that God meditates His truth through human personality. “And Word was made flesh and dwelt among us…” (John 1:14). As the preacher grows, so grows the message, and so grows the church. It is not enough to have the authority of the Word behind the sermon; one must also evidence the power of a life lived under the authority of that Word.
This explains why the preacher suffers: God is teaching him new lessons of faith for the encouragement of His people. It also explains why the preacher must cultivate his own personal walk with the Lord. The pulpit is no place for borrowed blessings. They must flow out of the minister’s fellowship with God in order to be fresh and exciting.
In other words, the preacher as well as the sermon must be prepared. The two go together. In every part of his being – physical, mental, emotional, spiritual – the preacher must be a prepared vessel to contain, and then to share, the message of life. What God has joined together, let not preachers put asunder.
[Quote from Warren W. Wiersbe and David W. Wiersbe, The Elements of Preaching (Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 1986) 19-20]
THINK BIG. START SMALL. GO DEEP.
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