Gospel Preaching 37

I Corinthians 2:2 For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified. 3 I was with you in weakness and in fear and in much trembling, 4 and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God.

He should also open his mouth vigorously and confidently, to preach the truth that has been entrusted to him. He should not be silent or mumble but should testify without being frightened or bashful. He should speak out candidly without regarding or sparing anyone, let it strike whomever and whatever it will. It is a great hindrance to a preacher if he looks around and worries about what people like or do not like to hear, or what might make him unpopular or bring harm or danger upon him. (Martin Luther)

“Preach Christ, let your end be to glorify him, to render him amiable and precious in the eyes of his people; to lead them to him as a sanctuary to protect, a propitiation to reconcile, a treasure to enrich, a physician to heal, an advocate to present, as righteousness to justify, as sanctification to renew, as redemption to save, as an inexhausted fountain of pardon, grace, comfort, victory, and glory.” (Edward Reynolds)

Paul wanted to know nothing among the Corinthians by Christ and Him crucified. Luther said preach the truth regardless of what might make the preacher unpopular. Edward Reynolds is so clear that the people of Christ need to the Gospel as well. What we see all of this boiled down to is that preachers are to focus on preaching the glories of Christ and the Gospel. It should also be pointed out that it is impossible to preach Christ and the Gospel without preaching, teaching, and exalting the glories and wonders of God in His free-grace.

It seems that in the United States today you have people focusing on discipleship or evangelism. Quite honestly, when either one of those is done as a focus Christ and the Gospel of Christ are not preached. The focus must be Christ and His Gospel of free-grace or people will not hear the truth of Christ or the Gospel. The Gospel of Christ is for the good of the people of God. The Gospel of Christ is the good news of Jesus the Christ. It appears that so many in the modern day think of the Gospel of grace alone as a canned message that they give to people in a very short spiel and then expect them to make a decision. This is why so many people have gone on to preaching meat as they term it and have left the so-called simple gospel behind. This is a huge mistake regarding both as to what the Gospel is and then for what the saints need.

The true people of God are a people with inward and outward trials and suffer the fiery darts of the evil one. They need to know the truths of Christ and His Gospel of grace alone that they may flee to Him in order to find protection and rest for their souls. Where else are believers to find rest for the assaults of the world, the devil, and their own sinful hearts? Is there anyone else who can protect believers from the world, the devil, and their own sinful hearts? We are to pray not to be led into temptation and protection from the evil one, but assuredly we can only find rest for our souls in Christ who is our King, our Shepherd, and our Advocate.

When the believing soul has his eyes opened to his own heart, where is that believing soul to go? When the poor and tried believer sees how worthy s/he is of eternal torment and the conscience brings torment to the soul, where is that poor believer to go? When the devil accuses the sensitive believer and tells them that there is no forgiveness for them, where are they to go? We find in the glorious Gospel of the free-grace of Christ that there has been a perfect sacrifice offered for each and every sin of the true believer who is a true child of the living God. The propitiatory work of Christ is for believers as well and in one sense especially so. It is true that the unbeliever must have Christ and be covered by His blood, but the believer needs this over and over day by day and hour by hour. The child of God finds comfort in the blood of Christ which has taken the wrath of God away, which means that there is now reconciliation with God. The believer needs to be cleansed on a constant basis in order to be in the presence of God and in order to pray. The Gospel of the free-grace of Christ must be preached on a constant basis for the good of those who already have Christ.

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