It's been quite some time since my last post, but I'm so boiling hot at the moment that I have to write this post while my thoughts are fresh.
I'm sitting in a class called "Proclaiming the Bible." Dr. Phelps is asking the question, "Why preach?" That is an excellent question that most Christians already agree upon. There is great necessity in preaching. I not concerned about the validity of preaching, but I am extremely concerned about our obsession with sermonizing. In other words, "Why preach sermons?" So I figured the best way to begin is to ask, "Did Jesus preach sermons?"
Hear me out, but I believe Jesus never concentrated on sermonizing, but on proclaiming the Word of God, since He embodies the word of God. A series of questions...
Did Jesus preach?...yes!
Did Peter, Paul, and the rest even preach?...yes!
Did Jesus preach sermons?...
Did Peter, Paul, and the rest preach sermons?...
MY INITIAL RESPONSE IS NO!
(I have no problem being persuaded otherwise, but here's what I think about the modern idea of sermons)
JESUS DID NOT PREACH SERMONS; JESUS PREACHED THE WORD OF GOD!
Men like Peter, Paul, etc., did not preach sermons; they preached the word of God.
Sermons, as we know them today, focus entirely on method. (Sometimes I think this class should be called "Proclaiming the Sermon" instead of "Proclaiming the Bible.")
A Sermon focuses nearly every time on METHOD
in other words...sermon=method.
On Tuesday, Dr. Kelley (president of NOBTS), spoke about the diminishing status of the SBC. He said, "Method is not the crucial issue" (as to why the SBC is dying).
The same can and should be said of the dying role of preaching. Sermons (or sermonizing) teach us to focus on the method.
in other words...sermons elevate method over message!!!
SERMONS ELEVATE METHOD OVER MESSAGE!
But Message always overrides Method!
MESSAGE (Word of God)
We've been commanded to preach God's Word, not Sermons!!
Sermonizing is squeezing the Holy Spirit out of the preaching of God's Word!
I know many will disagree with this, but that's the way i currently see it.
Two Studd quotes to close this out...
"How little chance the Holy Ghost has nowadays. The churches and missionary societies have so bound him in red tape that they practically ask Him to sit in a corner while they do the work themselves."
"Don't go into the study to prepare a sermon -- that's nonsense. Go into your study to God and get so fiery that your tongue is like a burning coal and you have got to speak."