Why I Preach “straight from the Bible”

The message on Sunday (11/12) was flat. I could feel it while I was preaching it. I don’t write that so that several of you will jump on the phone or email or message me about how it was great and I am being too hard on myself. Empathy is fine and I trust that in reflecting God’s grace no one in our church family will be leaving after one less than stellar message.  Let’s be honest you would’ve left a while ago! As I reflect on and do my best to improve on the message that to me was less than it should have been, God keeps bringing me back to a simple and reassuring truth which I want to share with you. His Word still works. This is why, I preach “straight from the Bible.” I believe with all my heart that God’s Word is transformative. It has the power, enlivened by the Holy Spirit to change people. Even on the ‘off’ message week(s). It is “living and active” even if the pastor preaching it is wrung out and running on empty. So on week’s like this one, I am vexed by a message that didn’t come off as I hoped, planned and prayed but, I am not in despair. Because, the Word was put before us. Because your Bible was open in your lap (or on your app) and that is where our bedrock hope for transformation comes. Not some great illustration or catchy phrase. Jesus the Living Word at work in our lives. That is why I preach the way I do. Not only is it my only hope in making an eternal impact on your life, it’s the only hope I have in God making an enteral impact in mine. Trust me, there is a good bit of looking deeply into what went wrong on Sunday so please don’t hear it as an excuse. But, I will not despair because God in His grace and love will use His Word to shape His people, even if the vessel bringing it has a bad day. Praise Him for His Word. May it transform us!

 “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17

“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12