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What I Read Online – 05/22/2012 (p.m.)

23 May
    • The way in which a man hears the Gospel is an index to the state of his heart and the nature of his affections and desires. If we were to suppose that Satan came into the congregation, what kind of hearer would he be? He is the inveterate enemy of all truth, righteousness and godliness; and the sanctification of the soul, devotion, and spiritual affections in the worshippers of the house of God vex [annoy] him sorely [greatly]. If one day, then, in human form he took his place amongst the hearers of the everlasting Gospel, we may fancy that, in order to hinder and annoy as much as possible, he would take his seat in a conspicuous place, either under the pulpit or in front of the gallery, before the eyes of all. Then he would pull ugly faces and close his eyes, and appear as if asleep. He would most anxiously guard against giving the slightest indication of being touched by what was said. Not a trace of conviction, submission, peace and joy should on any account ever appear. He would scowl and knit his brows and shake his head, and show every disapproval of the Gospel he hears, as if he would change every man in the place into the same devilish disposition. Such, I say, would be the deportment of the arch-enemy as a hearer of the Word of God. But have we not seen many that have the name of Christ upon them an exact picture of this?

      Quoted in Owen Jones, Some of the Great Preachers of Wales (Stoke-on-Trent, UK: Tentmaker Publications, 1995), 179.
    • Keep the cross at the center of your theological system.
    • What posture do I take in a doctrinal discussion? Do I quickly become agitated? Do I raise your voice easily? How would my wife or those closest to me people describe me during these kinds of situations? Take it a step further and actually ask them. Their answers may surprise you. And help you.
    • Remember that you probably held the other position not too long ago.
    • Pursue humility with the same passion that you pursue clarity.
    • For those unfamiliar with ministry, the pastor’s work week can be mystifying. What is there to do besides visit a few folks in the hospital, talk a few others in your office, and prepare a little talk for Sunday morning? In reality, pastors face many competing demands on their time as they work toward that moment on Sunday when they stand before the congregation with a word from the Lord.
    • ministry typically results in a consistently shifting schedule.
    • With a schedule in place, you’re never scrambling for a text. You’re also letting the Scriptures determine what you’re going to preach, rather than returning to your favorite topic or doctrine of interest.
    • The goal of all my preparation is to do three things: expound Christ, adore Christ, and apply Christ.
    • Connect Your Text to the Whole Bible
    • Connect Your Life to the Lives of Your People
    • While significant study and preparation is essential, it may be largely unfruitful if you don’t know the pains and trials your congregation is facing. If your preaching is to be marked by love and compassion for God’s people, you must know them. Understand their lives so that when you preach the gospel, it is affecting them where they are, not where you imagine them to be.
    • Cultivate a Posture of Constant Learning
    • Consistently Find Your Identity in Christ, Not in Your Preaching
    • The gospel you preach must define you. You need to taste it to know that it is good.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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Posted by on 23/05/2012 in Current Issues

 

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