"For you see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord." (1Corinthians 1:26-31)
Isn't it amazing that an Almighty God has chosen to save sinful men, and use them for His service. Many times Christians start to get the "big head", and think of themselves more highly than they ought. As if, they're doing God a big favor, by offering Him their great talents and abilities. It's sad to say, but many times, preachers are guilty of this. But we must ever realize, that we're nothing, outside of Jesus Christ. God doesn't need your talent. God doesn't need your personality or your abilities or your money or your popularity. We should constantly remain humble before the Lord, and be grateful that He uses us at all, despite our faults and failures and inabilities.
Somebody had said that "God doesn't call the qualified, but He qualifies the called." My only hope of doing any lasting work for Jesus, is to just get into His will, and then get out of His way. If I'm used of Him at all, it will be when I'm humbling myself before Him. It's God that does the work, through the Holy Spirit. Men are just His tools, used to propogate His word to a lost and dying world, that lies in darkness.
It's not what I say that helps men, nor what any preacher says. It's what God says that changes lives and stirs hearts. We ought to always put special emphasis on God's precious Word. God doesn't give me, or you, Divine revelation or new truths, each time we preach. He's already given all of His words and truth to mankind for today, in the 66 books of the Bible. Our job is to preach it, teach it, carry it to the ends of the Earth, and proclaim it. With special emphasis on the "preaching" of it.
A lot of what goes on in pulpits today isn't biblical preaching. It's: story telling, humor, ear tickling, poetry, pushing political agendas, and entertainment. True Bible preaching, emphasizes on the Bible. It uses God's very own words, to point men to Christ. It teaches and exhorts God's servants to grow in the Lord and the knowledge of His will. It stirs us up to serve Him ever more fervently.
I think different types of preaching should be done to the church versus to the world. The church needs more teaching of God's word, and in depth study of Biblical doctrines. The world needs to hear Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. I think many times in the New Testament, evangelism is what is meant by the term preaching, more so than just preaching in a church setting.(But, since so many lost people attend church, and are church members, that's a good place for it too!)
God loves preaching. The Devil hates it. The Holy Ghost annoints preaching. The world stops their ears to it. Preaching of the Word, preaching of the Cross, preaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ and Him crucified, is the only hope for :
"For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth..." (Romans 1:16)
"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." (Romans 10:17)
For the New Testament preacher, the command is: "Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine." (2 Timothy 4:2)
"But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry." (2 Timothy 4:5)
Am I anything special? No. But I represent Someone who is. I'm an ambassador of Christ. I have His Blessed Book backing up my preaching. I'm telling people what He said. What an important and fearful calling. It should not be taken lightly. Many times I shudder at my own inability and sinful unworthiness. I like the words of an old Fundamental preacher:"
But aren't you glad that God can take a crooked stick, such as you and I, and draw a straight line with it?" (Bro. Harold B. Sightler)
Amen! Hallelujah! I will glory in Christ, and in His cross. Here am I Lord, send me!
Preach on, brothers in Christ! It's still in the Book, and it's still God's way!
"For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe." (1 Corinthians 1:21)
I'm not mighty, not noble- just a base, weak, crooked stick. Hopefully, God can draw a straight line with me, every once in a while.