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Gospel Preaching Is Right


Many in the religious world have declared gospel preaching to be dead.  Drama, elaborate lighting and sound systems, and much more are touted as the way to reach the masses.  However, God’s people know the power to save is found in the message.  While the world views it as “foolishness,” God uses it to open hearts.


Gospel preaching is the right response to being cleansed from sin.  Isaiah was struck with a powerful sense of his own sinfulness when he was given a view of God’s awesome, majestic presence.  After he was cleansed, Isaiah responded to God’s call for someone to go for him by saying, “Here am I!  Send me” (Isaiah 6:1-8).  Paul described his compulsion to preach the gospel when writing to the Christians at Corinth (1 Corinthians 9:16) and Rome (1:14-15).  One senses the apostle’s response arose from a sense of his own inadequacy because of sin and thankfulness as a result of Jesus’ cleansing sacrifice (2 Corinthians 4:7; Romans 7:24-25). 


Gospel preaching also contains the right message. “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God…. For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe” (1 Corinthians 1:18, 21).  No other message has the power to save souls (Romans 1:16-17).


When presented by a faithful steward of God’s word, gospel preaching will have the right motive.  Paul reminded the Ephesian elders of his service in their city, indicating his goal had been to produce repentance toward God and faith toward Jesus among Jews and Gentiles (Acts 20:20-21).  He expressed his love for his brethren in the flesh and willingness to lose his own soul if such would save them (Romans 10:1; 9:1-3).  He also asked the Christians at Colossea to pray for God to open a door for preaching the mystery of Christ (Colossians 4:3-4).


Gospel preaching is God’s only means of opening hearts.  The singer of Israel said it well, when he wrote, “The entrance of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple” (Psalm 119:130).  The Lord opened Lydia’s heart through the preaching of Paul (Acts 16:14-15).  On the road to Emmaus and in a gathering of disciples, Jesus opened eyes to the Father’s plan to send him to die and be raised again by expounding on all the Old Testament (Luke 24, especially 32 and 45).


            So, though others look for an entertaining substitute for preaching, we continue to recognize it as the right way in God’s eyes.  It is the right response to being cleansed from sin’s defilement.  It is the right message.  When presented with the motive of helping others discover God’s saving power, it is the only means of opening hearts.  May God bless us all as we proclaim the good news.


Gary C. Hampton