Although I’m not an experienced preacher, my recent debut makes me think about preaching.
I believe that there is a principle with regards to preaching that cannot be emphasised enough.
I think this is the kind of thing that is obvious for some and shockingly provocative for others.
The whole Bible, Old and New Testament, is telling the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In short, the OT is anticipating the incarnation of the Son of God, and in the NT the Son becomes incarnate.
Because of this the following can be stated:
- The whole Bible can be used to preach the gospel.
- Every sermon should in one way or another preach the Gospel (see previous post).
It may sound whiny and it may only be me, but I believe we have in many churches a situation where the Gospel is not preached most of the time, but Scripture is at best used as points of departure for personal thoughts and speculations or historical expositions. When the Gospel is refered to it is almost exclusively when reading from the 4 evangelists (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John).
Our starting point when approaching Scripture must be: “How does this part relate to the Gospel of Jesus?” If we can’t figure that out, we must recognize that the fault is in us and not in the Bible. It is neither a question of faults in the Bible, nor is it a matter of some parts having nothing to do with Jesus. We must instead ask other Christians and pray that the Spirit opens our eyes to the text.
Having this reality of the Gospel centeredness of the entire Bible at the forefront of our mind makes Bible reading and Bible study and preaching so much more exciting! We no longer have to ask ourselves if the text has anything to do with the Gospel, but rather how it has to do with the Gospel.