Summary: This sermon deals with how to have power in our messages, so as to convert lost sinners to Christ.
"Preaching That Packs A Punch!"
Text: 1st Corinthians 1:17-18
Let me begin by saying that what I am advocating
in this sermon is not what I heard called by the
term "masochistic preaching", which my seminary
professor defined as "enjoying inflicting pain or
humiliation" on one’s congregation. Far from it!
What I am promoting in this message is preaching
under the power of the Holy Spirit that produces
conviction, and ultimately brings salvation to
those who respond in faith! In the book of Acts
Peter preached at Pentecost, and the people fell
under God’s convicting power. Now, he made them
feel bad and guilty, for they were, but he did it
with the intention of helping them find salvation.
They were "pricked in their heart"(Acts 2:37).
That is the kind of preaching that is absent from
many pulpits today. But, without conviction of
sin, there can be no true salvation experiences.
We might work on people’s emotions, and get them
to respond, and join the church, but until they
see themselves as sinners in need of the forgiveness
of God, and cry out to him in repentance, they are
no better off. They may leave church amused, or
uplifted by good entertainment, but they leave lost.
We must have preaching that "packs a punch" to win
people to Jesus.
To the Apostle Paul, the "punch" in preaching comes
from helping men see Christ crucified, their only
hope of redemption from sin. Paul even said that
preachers, and we might add S.S. teachers, deacons,
missionaries, and others who proclaim the Gospel
can "make the cross of none effect." That’s a
frightening thought, isn’t it! How could we be
guilty of such a terrible sin?
The preaching of the cross is the power of God.
We preach Christ crucified, resurrected, and coming
again! That is the message that changes lives.
The cross is the most powerful force in this world.
It was there that the greatest battle of all time
occurred. The forces of good and evil collided,
and guess what! God won! He dealt Satan a fatal
wound by allowing His Son to die for the sins of
the world. It is at the cross that God’s great
and amazing love is revealed. It is at the cross
-men find God, themselves, and their fellow
-that mountains shook, and the sky turned
pitch black, and the thunder rolled
-that the perfect lamb of God became our
substitute, and died in our place
-lives are transformed, and hope is given
We don’t ever want to be guilty of diminishing the
effectivess of the cross. Let’s notice some ways
that people can take the "punch" out of preaching,
and make the cross of none effect.
I. BY FAILING TO ACCEPT JESUS CHRIST AS THEIR
Christ died to save sinners, so when a person
rejects Christ, the cross is meaningless, at
least as far as he or she is concerned.
II. BY TEACHING THAT THERE IS SOME OTHER WAY TO
GOD BESIDES JESUS
He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He
is the Only Way. No one can come to God, but
illustration-use the words to "The Way of
the Cross Leads Home" -Hymn
III. BY FAILING TO LIVE RIGHTEOUSLY FOR CHRIST’S
Jesus died to redeem us, and to claim us
as His holy, separated people. We are to
come out from the world, and be different
and separate from the evil things of this
age. If we do not live for Christ, we make
the cross of none effect in our life.
IV. BY SEEKING TO IMPRESS PEOPLE, GAIN A FOLLOWING
FOR OURSELVES, DRAWING ATTENTION TO OURSELVES,
AND CHANGING THE GOSPEL MESSAGE SO THAT IT DOES
NOT OFFEND ANYONE.
We are called to lead people to faith in Christ.
We are not called to magnify ourselves. Too
many preachers lust for the big churches, and
great notarity. It’s all about Jesus. Let’s
point people to Him, and then we won’t be guilty
of making the cross of none effect.
V. FINALLY, I WOULD LIKE TO POINT OUT THAT THERE
IS POWER IN THE PREACHING OF THE CROSS. AMAZING
If we are faithful to God, He will use us to
help many people respond to the Gospel, and
enter the Kingdom of God. That should be reward
enough, to know that we have been so privilaged
to be entrusted with the Gospel by our loving