Thursday, June 27, 2019
One of the unique challenges I face as a pastor is that I struggle with how to present the Gospel in new and exciting ways so that the hearers are led to a point of decision. For some reason I have become convinced that the message needs to be re-packaged on a weekly basis so that it is always fresh, exciting, and inviting. After all, isn’t that what I was called and gifted to do?
To be an effective communicator one must understand the hearer and adjust his delivery technique to meet the needs of the hearer. Unfortunately, many of today’s communicators have done more than just adjust the delivery style; they have also changed the heart of the message. It is very probable that they have done this to be more accepted and admired by their audience. I’m convinced that God has uniquely gifted some people to be effective communicators of His truth, but I am also convinced that changing the heart of the message to please the hearer is wrong.
What is the heart of the message that should never be changed or compromised by human reason?
1 Corinthians 1:17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel – not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
It is the message of the cross of Jesus Christ. No message of human wisdom or creativity has any power if it does not clearly proclaim Christ’s atoning death on the cross as the only sacrifice for man’s sin. People are not transformed by man’s stylistic techniques or politically correct language: they are transformed by the power of God, and the power of God is the message of the cross. To the unsaved it may seem like foolishness, but to those who are being saved it is the power of God.
1 Corinthians 1:18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
Let us not be swayed by the tide of public opinion or the need for the public’s approval. Let us boldly proclaim the truth of the cross of Jesus Christ in the simple and repeatable ways of the Apostles:
- All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
- The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord
- God demonstrated His own love for us in this: while we were yet sinners Christ died for us
- There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus
Someone you know or meet today needs to hear that message.