Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Sermons: A Precious Jewel

Stories about God (parables) brought to people who have never heard or do not yet understand, should be our natural way of interacting. Open air meetings, like Jesus had in the feeding of the 5,000, should be the norm.

People are dying to hear the gospel in a way that they can understand it. Great preaching is designed to do that. Where would we be without the “Sermon on the Mount”? We need great sermons.

Roma 10:14 (NIV) How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? 15 And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!"

Great sermons are for reaching those who have not yet heard.

Why should great teaching for Christians be packaged the same way?


Steve Pye said...

GTA used to have a sign over the back doors, which they've since taken down, but which should have been left up. It said, "You are now entering the mission field."

Whether you want to call it the mission field, or "the rest of your life" doesn't matter too much, but what does matter is that on the way out of church, we should recognize that we are actually entering what really matters: the world. Be "in the world, but not of the world". There's something valuable about being in it though. Closing the doors and listening to a peppy sermon is fine and dandy, but if we walk out and do nothing, we're worthless.

Pastors keep complaining about the concept of Sunday Christians, and yet, the primary focus of almost every church is about getting butts in the pews on Sundays to listen to some well-prepared speech on why the pews are pointless, and how it's all about the people outside. How do you learn to play the piano? By playing the piano. Not by listening to someone tell you how to play.

So why are so many pastors and leaders so critical about families that don't come out for a few weeks? One time, I spent a Sunday morning helping a friend move in to town who needed help. That felt like real church to me... serving someone wholeheartedly in their time of need. But on Monday, I heard "missed you at church on Sunday" from a church leader, not because this person actually missed me, but rather because they were trying to encourage me to make sure I'm there next Sunday for the "pep talk". Meanwhile, I was out doing church in the world.

solnechko said...

Nothing to do with your post, David, but more to do with Steve's comment... Why do we say to people "missed you at church on sunday?"... Because if we don't they leave the church bitter and hurt because no one noticed whether or not they were there. no one called. no one cared. well that's not true... a couple of people called, but obviously THEY don't count. (I talked to a woman like this a few weeks ago.) But actually, to be honest, her real complaint was more valid - what's the point of going when your relationships are simply "hello, how are you?" relationships. You're just putting in your time. You can get good teaching from the radio and internet... I see her points, BUT it seems so very "what's in it for me"-ish. Whatever happened to "What can I give? How can I serve in the body? I know how to serve outside the church, but who can I train up who doesn't know how?"

p.s. David... have you just written all these posts in the last couple of days? Were they just waiting in your brain ready to pour out? That's wild. I'm glad for you that you now have an output so that your heart doesn't explode. Cheers.

David Grant said...

I didn't know my heart was exploding either. But you're right and I can't believe I'm saying this, Blogging is sic.