Preaching Articles

"Now I don't say this to make you feel guilty ..."

"I don't want you to feel pressured ..."

"Please don't feel bad about this, but ..."

Have you noticed how common it has become for preachers and other Bible teachers to preface their preaching, teaching and writing with something like an apology? By doing so, they're dismissing whatever convicting work the Holy Spirit may accomplish in the lives of the listeners or readers.

Certainly we don't preach and teach just to make someone "feel guilty," but if someone is guilty, we want the Word of God to convict lives so that they may respond with repentance and allow themselves to be transformed by the Holy Spirit.

So stop apologizing! Instead, "... speak the truth in love ..." (Eph. 4:15a) and let the Word of God do what it does ...

"For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires." Hebrews 4:12

"16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work." 2 Timothy 3:16-17

So stop sucking the authority out of the Word in the minds of your listeners and readers by apologizing for it. Instead, preach and teach the Word of God accurately and boldly and see what great things God accomplishes from it!

Minister, clinical pastoral counselor, life and business coach, certified personal trainer, writer, leader, businessman James Scott has done a few things over the years, but being a servant of Jesus Christ is why he exists, and the greatest passion of his life is to help people better understand, and apply, God's Word to their lives.

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Harvey Ventrello

commented on Nov 9, 2013

In our Bible study we have been studying Galatians. It is so clear in this letter of Paul's that salvation is as simple as believe on the Lord Jesus Christ. Acts 16:31; John 3:17-18, 36, 1John 5:12-13. Paul even said in 1Co 2:2 For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. I cannot find anywhere in the Bible where it says you have to invited Jesus Christ into your heart or that you have to repent of sin and be saved. I understand repent in the Koine Greek means to change your mind or change your thinking. It is the Greek word metanoeo. To change your mind about sin is after salvation and is a means of having fellowship with God. 1John 1:3-10. After salvation we learn about the things God has provided for us. We are even commanded to grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 2Pet 2:18. I think we get the cart before the horse.

Derek Dicks

commented on Nov 9, 2013

I am glad you are studying the Bible. There is a voice of "grace" today that has minimized the power of what God's grace is actually for. Empowerment. Fortunately and unfortunately-depending on which side someone ends up on-God in his infinite love for humans has set up has boundaries on what we can and cannot do or allow. I.e. Jesus had to be the perfect sacrifice to atone for our sins, and a really, really, really, good sacrifice would not be allowed...a repentant heart is a gift from God. It allows us to leave our sin and dead works behind and make us a new, clean, pure, holy bride for Christ, our clean, pure, holy groom. The Father will not allow a bride that is unequaled yoked to his Son. This entrance into a bridal relationship with Jesus, not to mention much about the holy family of God, is immediate when we are born again. Thus it is not possible to be saved (new, clean, pure, holy) without the gift of repentance, and repentance from sin and dead works must preclude the new identity that being born again includes. Grace is what empowers us to live a holy life, and we Christians need lots and lots of grace! The unbeliever needs just as much grace, but there its no grace where there is no repentance...grace is, at least, empowerment to live holy as Christ....the demons believe in Jesus and know him to be the holy Annointed one and that will not ensure that we see them in heaven when we get there, nor will they be empowered by Gods grace either....and unfortunately, i agree with you, that many have heard that a phrase will get them to heaven when in reality, there must be a regeneration from old to new. Which begins again with the goodness of God and then leads us to respond with repentance which allows us to be found suitable to be joined to our eternal family and groom....asking for grace everyday, all day long until the day we see him truly face to face. Which is what His love wanted for us all along. Keep studying, i learn new stuff all the time:)

Ma Elena Pataueg Abesamis

commented on Nov 10, 2013

Romans 8:2-8 28 -For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. ...

John Jackson

commented on Nov 10, 2013

Just a thought- how do you explain Rev3:19-20 19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. What door is Jesus knocking at? Why is He urging repentance before YOU open the door?

Anonymous Contributor

commented on Nov 10, 2013


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