Saturday, October 15, 2016

Biblical Preaching is Persuasive Preaching (2)...

Some thoughts of mine on the matter of persuasive preaching:
Persuasive preaching seeks to convince not just inform! A battle rages for hearts and souls. 
Persuasive preaching engages Christians, not just the lost, in order that they see their sin and hear afresh the offer of Christ crucified for them in the gospel.  
Persuasive preaching recognizes that the Christian life is a spiritual warfare. 
Persuasive preaching recognizes that Christians by nature do still yield to sin. 
Persuasive preaching recognizes that Christians struggle with their sin and unbelief. 
Persuasive preaching recognizes that Christians struggle with sins in their lives and thus often feel discouraged, even despondent. 
Persuasive preaching presents Christ crucified as the remedy for the sins of not only the unsaved but Christians. 
Persuasive preaching diagnoses sin as a deadly cancer and not merely a flesh wound. 
Persuasive preaching calls for faith and repentance in the hearers. 
Persuasive preaching presents Christ crucified and him alone as the full remedy for the guilt of sin and God's full provision for godly living. 
Persuasive preaching presents Christ's substitutionary-penalty-paying-death on the cross and his resurrection as the power of God that breaks the dominion of sin in believers. 
Persuasive preaching doesn't primarily present Biblical truths for living the Christian life, but rather Christ crucified as the power of God unto justification, sanctification, and salvation. 
Persuasive preaching dares to confront hearers/sinners where Scripture confronts and comforts them where Scripture comforts. 
Persuasive preaching appeals to the hearts of the hearers, believer and unbeliever alike, with the Good News of Christ. 
Persuasive preaching appeals to the hearers, saved and lost, to trust in Christ - "all who labor and are heavy laden." 
Persuasive preaching exposes our lack of trust in Christ, our need of Christ, and presents Christ to us as he is offered in the gospel, the One who is completely trustworthy. 
Persuasive preaching presents the love of God in Christ who died for sinners, believer and unbeliever alike...

Friday, October 14, 2016

Biblical Preaching is Persuasive Preaching (1)...

Gleaned and adapted from Tim Keller's book on preaching...
Persuasive preaching seeks to convince hearers to put their trust in Christ alone and renounce all trust and hope in themselves. 
Persuasive preaching not only understands the Biblical text, presenting it with a clear theme, but presents it with a persuasive argument that engages the hearer's heart. 
Persuasive preaching presents Christ as the key to understanding each biblical text and also the key to bringing the Word persuasively home to the heart and life of the listener. 
Neglecting persuasion in preaching neglects the heart of the listener and undermines the purpose of preaching. 
Persuasive preaching is offering Christ as a living reality - the One to be believed in, encountered, and embraced by those who listen. 
Persuasive preaching engages listeners' with the truth of Scripture on a level of where they live. Christ is thus presented as coming to them. 
Persuasive preaching preaches Christ from the whole Word of God and preaches him not only to the mind but to the heart of the listener. 
Persuasive preaching presents to the listener the Bible's unique, divine, living power with the Word's own penetrating power (Heb. 4:12). 
Persuasive preaching seeks to change people by not only logically engaging listeners' minds with Scripture's truth but by moving their hearts with the love of God in Christ. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

The Mere Mercy of God...

The Mere Mercy of God

This calling of Abram is a signal instance of the gratuitous mercy of God. Had Abram been beforehand with God by any merit of works? Had Abram come to him, or conciliated his favour? Nay, we must ever recall to mind that he was plunged in the filth of idolatry; and God freely stretches forth his hand to bring back the wanderer. He deigns to open his sacred mouth, that he may show to one, deceived by Satan's wiles, the way of salvation. 
But this is done designedly, in order that the manifestation of the grace of God might become the more conspicuous in his person. For he is an example of the vocation of us all; for in him we perceive, that, by the mere mercy of God, those things that are not are raised from nothing, in order that they may begin to be something.
John Calvin, Genesis, (Banner of Truth), p. 343