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PROCLAIM! Podcast

PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

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The Road from Text to Sermon, Part 11 (Proclaim #77)

Welcome to episode #77 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is 1 Corinthians 1:23 which reads: “But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;”

Our quote on preaching today is from Charles Grandison Finney. He said, “Ministers often preach about the Gospel instead of preaching the Gospel. They often preach about sinners instead of preaching to them.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “The Road from Text to Sermon, Part 11” from “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

3. We Apply It: “What Difference Does It Make?”

The third developmental question relates to application. While it is essential that you explain the truth of a passage, your task is not finished until you relate that passage to the experience of your hearers. Ultimately the man or woman in the pew hopes that you will answer the questions, “So what? What difference does it make?” All Christians have a responsibility to ask these questions because they are called to live under God in the light of biblical revelation.

Mortimer J. Adler classifies books as either theoretical or practical. A theoretical book may be understood and then put away on the shelf. A practical book, however, must not only be read; it must also be used. Taken in this way, the Bible is an intensely practical book because it was written not only to be understood but to be obeyed.

Homileticians have not given accurate application the attention it deserves. To my knowledge no book has been published that is devoted exclusively, or even primarily, to the knotty problems raised by application. As a result many church members, having listened to orthodox sermons all their lives, may be practicing heretics. Our creeds affirm the central doctrines of the faith and remind us what Christians should believe, but they do not tell us how belief in these doctrines should make us behave. That is part of the expositor’s responsibility, and you must give it diligent attention.

Basic to perceptive application is accurate exegesis. We cannot decide what a passage means to us unless first we have determined what the passage meant when the Bible was written. To do this we must sit down before the biblical writer and try to understand what he wanted to convey to his original readers. Only after we comprehend what he meant in his own terms and to his own times can we clarify what difference that should make in life today.

In order to apply a passage accurately, we must define the situation into which the revelation was originally given and then decide what a modern man or woman shares, or does not share, with the original readers. The closer the relationship between people now and people then, the more direct the application. James wrote to Jewish Christians scattered across the ancient world and facing hard situations, “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires”. That counsel applies to believers in every age because all Christians stand in identical relationship to God and His Word when they face trials.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

The Preacher’s Call, Part 3 (Proclaim #76)

Welcome to episode #76 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Mark 16:15 which reads: “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”

Our quote on preaching today is from Lester Roloff. He said, “The world’s greatest need is preaching preachers. The Gospel is our emancipation proclamation: let’s take it to the slaves of sin.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “The Preacher’s Call, Part 3” from “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs.

II. IT IS DEFINITE
Though the call may come in various ways and under different circumstances, it is nonetheless distinct. It leaves the believer with the assurance that God desires him for a certain specific work. This, in turn, gives a joyous confidence and a holy boldness to the preacher, as he realizes the authority that lies behind the message and the messenger. The promise, “My presence shall go with thee and I will give thee rest,” nerves the soul to courageously face the opposition that will inevitably show itself. The cheering assurance, “The Lord is with thee!” sustains the servant of the Lord, who now realizes that Omnipotence is on his side.

III. IT IS VARIED IN CIRCUMSTANCES
A study of the ways by which God called some of His servants for the work He had for them should be a profitable exercise of the soul. Let us look at just a few out of many.

1. Abraham
We are told, “the God of glory appeared unto him” and a definite call was given him, with the promise of his own blessing and, through him, to all the families of the earth.

2. Moses
This example is most instructive, for God had to overcome the reluctance of the one He called. Moses had many objections to offer, but every objection was met with a definite promise, until Moses was convinced that God knew what He was doing in calling him.

3. Joshua
To this man God first gave a commission with a promise and then granted him a vision of the One who commissioned him.

4. Gideon
He was a humble man, who was hailed by God as a “mighty man of valor,” and who was sent forth to deliver Israel with these words ringing in his ears, “Go, in this thy might…have not I sent thee?” Not until the Lord had wrought two miracles on his behalf was this man convinced of his call and commission.

5. Elisha Here was a prosperous and energetic young man. He was suddenly called by God, from the midst of a busy life, to leave all his rosy prospects of worldly success for the comparative obscurity of menial service for Elijah, the prophet of the Lord. For years he was unheard of, until the time that his master was to be translated. Then his years of faithful service, in secret, were “rewarded openly” and his name became a household word in Israel.

6. Isaiah The moving description of this great prophet’s vision, call, and commission has stirred the hearts of the people of God for two and a half millennia. It has led many, like Isaiah, to say in response to the call of God, “Here am I, send me”.

7. Peter
Andrew brought this man, naturally impulsive and energetic, to the Savior, thus evidencing the value of personal evangelism. The miracle of the overabundant haul of fish served to provide the circumstances under which his call and commission came.
While the circumstances of the call were different in each of these cases, for God is a God of infinite variety, the purpose and results were the same: the glory of God, the blessing of the one called, and the benefit of those to whom he was sent with the message. Each of these men had an experience that was distinctly his own, and from which he emerged with the conscious assurance of God’s call to him.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

Our Public Prayer, Part 6 (Proclaim #75)

Welcome to episode #75 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is 2 Timothy 2:15-16 which reads: “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.”

Our quote on preaching today is from Lester Roloff. He said, “Nothing is more needed among preachers today than that we should have the courage to shake ourselves free from the thousand and one trivialities in which we are asked to waste our time and strength, and resolutely return to the apostolic ideal which made necessary the office of the diaconate. We must resolve that we will continue stedfastly in prayer, and in the ministry of the Word.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “Our Public Prayer, Part 6” from “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon.

Those who despise all extempore prayer will probably catch at these remarks and use them against it, but I can assure them that the faults adverted to are not common among us, and are indeed almost extinct; while the scandal caused by them never was, at the worst, so great as that caused by the way in which the liturgical service is often performed. Far too often is the church service hurried through in a manner as indevout as if it were a ballad-singer’s ditty. The words are parroted without the slightest appreciation of their meaning; not sometimes, but very frequently, in the places set apart for Episcopal worship, you may see the eyes of the people, and the eyes of the choristers, and the eyes of the parson himself, wandering about in all directions, while evidently from the very tone of the reading there is no feeling of sympathy with what is being read. I have been at funerals when the burial service of the church of England has been galloped through so indecorously that it has taken all the grace I had to prevent my throwing a hassock at the creature’s head. I have felt so indignant that I have not known what to do, to hear, in the presence of mourners whose hearts were bleeding, a man rattling through the service as if he were paid by the piece, and had more work to follow, and therefore desired to get it through as quickly as possible. What effect he could think he was producing, or what good result could come from words jerked forth and hurled out with vengeance and vehemence, I cannot imagine. It is really shocking to think of how that very wonderful burial service is murdered, and made into an abomination by the mode in which it is frequently read, I merely mention this because, if they criticize our prayers too severely, we can bring a formidable countercharge to silence them.

Better far, however, for us to amend our own blunders than find fault with others.

In order to make our public prayer what it should be, the first necessary is, that it must be a matter of the heart. A man must be really in earnest in supplication. It must be true prayer, and if it be such, it will, like love, cover a multitude of sins. You can pardon a man’s familiarities and his vulgarities too, when you clearly see that his inmost heart is speaking to his Maker, and that it is only the man’s defects of education which create his faults, and not any moral or spiritual vices of his heart. The pleader in public must be in earnest; for a sleepy prayer–what can be a worse preparation for a sermon? A sleepy prayer–what can make people more dislike going up to the house of God at all? Cast your whole soul into the exercise. If ever your whole manhood was engaged in anything., let it be in drawing near unto God in public. So pray, that by a divine attraction, you draw the whole congregation with you up to the throne of God. So pray, that by the power of the Holy Spirit resting on you, you express the desires and thoughts of every one present, and stand as the one voice for the hundreds of beating hearts which are glowing with fervor before the throne of God.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

The Preacher’s Call, Part 2 (Proclaim #73)

Welcome to episode #73 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Ezra 7:9-10 which reads: “For upon the first day of the first month began he to go up from Babylon, and on the first day of the fifth month came he to Jerusalem, according to the good hand of his God upon him. For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments.”

Our quote on preaching today is from John Piper. He said, “All Christian preaching should be the exposition and application of biblical texts. Our authority as preachers sent by God rises and falls with our manifest allegiance to the text of Scripture.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts, the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “The Preacher’s Call, Part 2” from “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs.

2. It is born in the atmosphere of spirituality
It comes when the soul is enjoying fellowship with God through the reading of and meditation on His Word, and through prayer. The carnal believer, or the worldly Christian, will know nothing of “the still small voice” which falls upon the soul under such circumstances. Samuel’s word to Saul has a message for each believer, “Stand thou still a while, that I may show thee the word of God”. This atmosphere of spirituality is made possible as the believer deliberately presents his body as “a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service”. It comes through fervent supplication at the throne of grace to know the will of God for one’s life. It is maintained by prompt obedience to the known will of God, as found in the Holy Scriptures. This is the spiritual atmosphere of the call.

3. It comes usually in the midst of Christian activity, not in monastic isolation
It does not come to lazy Christians. It was while Barnabas and Saul “ministered to the Lord” that the divine call came, “Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereto I have called them”. It was while Moses tended his flock that he was commissioned to be a leader of Israel. It was while Gideon threshed the wheat that he was selected to deliver Israel from the oppressors. It was while Elisha was busy plowing that the mantle of Elijah was thrown on his shoulders and God claimed his life. It was while Peter was busy with his fishing, and Matthew with his business, that the Saviour came and called each to service for Himself. It is as the believer is doing what already lies to his hand that the call comes for further service. “If any man will do His will, he shall know,” said Christ. Prompt unquestioning obedience to what we know will lead to further revelations of His will. Hosea’s message should have a voice to each believer, “Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord”.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

Our Public Prayer, Part 5 (Proclaim #75)

Welcome to episode #72 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Matthew 18:19-20 which reads: “Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

Our quote on preaching today is from Richard Baxter. He said, “Prayer must carry on our work as much as preaching; he preacheth not heartily to his people that will not pray for them.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts, the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “Our Public Prayer, Part 5” from “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon.

Pray for your people as saints and sinners–not as if they were all saints.

Mention the young and the aged; the impressed and the careless; the devout and the backsliding. Never turn to the right hand or to the left, but plough on in the furrow of real prayer. Let your confessions of sin and your thanksgivings be truthful and to the point; and let your petitions be presented as if you believed in God and had no doubt as to the efficacy of prayer: I say this, because so many pray in such a formal manner as to lead observers to conclude that they thought it a very decent thing to pray, but, after all, a very poor and doubtful business as to any practical result. Pray as one who has tried and proved his God, and therefore comes with undoubting confidence to renew his pleadings: and do remember to pray to God right through the prayer, and never fall to talking or preaching–much less, as some do, to scolding and grumbling. As a rule, if called upon to preach, conduct the prayer yourself; and if you should be highly esteemed in the ministry, as I trust you may be, make a point, with great courtesy, but equal firmness, to resist the practice of choosing men to pray with the idea of honoring them by giving them something to do. Our public devotions ought never to be degraded into opportunities for compliment. I have heard prayer and singing now and then called “the preliminary services,” as if they were but a preface to the sermon; this is rare I hope among us–if it were common it would be to our deep disgrace. I endeavor invariably to take all the service myself for my own sake, and I think also for the people’s. I do not believe that “anybody will do for the praying.” No, sirs, it is my solemn conviction that the prayer is one of the most weighty, useful, and honorable parts of the service, and that it ought to be even more considered than the sermon.

There must be no putting up of anybodies and nobodies to pray, and then the selection of the abler man to preach. It may happen through weakness, or upon a specific occasion, that it may be a relief to the minister to have some one to offer prayer for him; but if the Lord has made you love your work you will not often or readily fulfill this part of it by proxy. If you delegate the service at all, let it be to one in whose spirituality and present preparedness you have the fullest confidence; but to pitch on a giftless brother unawares, and put him forward to get through the devotions is shameful. “Shall we serve heaven with less respect Than we do minister to our gross selves?” Appoint the ablest man to pray, and let the sermon be slurred sooner than the approach to heaven. Let the Infinite Jehovah be served with our best; let prayer addressed to the Divine Majesty be carefully weighed, and presented with all the powers of an awakened heart and a spiritual understanding. He who has been by communion with God prepared to minister to the people, is usually of all men present the most fit to engage in prayer; to lay out a program which puts up another brother in his place, is to mar the harmony of the service, to rob the preacher of an exercise which would brace him for his sermon, and in many instances to suggest comparisons between one part of the service and the other which ought never to be tolerated. If unprepared brethren are to be sent into the pulpit to do my praying for me when I am engaged to preach, I do not see why I might not be allowed to pray, and then retire to let these brethren do the sermonizing. I am not able to see any reason for depriving me of the holiest, sweetest, and most profitable exercise which my Lord has allotted me; if I may have my choice, I will sooner yield up the sermon than the prayer. Thus much I have said in order to impress upon you that you must highly esteem public prayer, and seek of the Lord for the gifts and graces necessary to its right discharge.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

The Road from Text to Sermon, Part 9 (Proclaim #71)

Welcome to episode #71 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Acts 20:27-28 which reads: “.For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”

Our quote on preaching today is from Charles Spurgeon. He said, “Of all I wish to say this is the sum; my brethren, preach Christ, always and evermore.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts, the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “The Road from Text to Sermon, Part 9” from “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

We do well, therefore, to adopt the attitude that a statement is not true because it is in the Bible; it is in the Bible because it is true. The fact that an assertion is in the pages of a leather-covered book does not necessarily make it valid. Instead, the Bible states reality as it exists in the universe, as God has made it and as he governs it. We would expect, therefore, the affirmations of Scripture to be demonstrated in the world around us. That is not to say that we establish biblical truth by studying sociology, astronomy, or archaeology, but the valid data from these sciences second the truth taught in Scripture.

How does a preacher handle the developmental questions, “Is that true? Do I really believe it?” Imagine that you were to state to a modern congregation the mighty affirmation of Paul, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28). Most people greet that statement with raised eyebrows: “Is that true? Can we believe that?” What about the mother who was killed by a hit-and-run driver and who left behind a husband and three children? What about those Christian parents whose four-year-old son has been diagnosed with leukemia? How is that good? What’s “good” about a young missionary drowned in the muddy waters of a jungle river before he has witnessed to even one national? To work with this passage and fail to address those perplexing questions is to miss the audience completely.

Donald Grey Barnhouse works with the question of validity while expounding John 14:12: “Greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.” (KJV). He uses an analogy to establish the truth of his explanation:

Aboard a United States submarine in enemy waters of the Pacific, a sailor was stricken with acute appendicitis. The nearest surgeon was thousands of miles away. Pharmacist Mate Wheller Lipes watched the seaman’s temperature rise to 106 degrees. His only hope was an operation. Said Lipes: “I have watched doctors do it. I think I could. What do you say?” The sailor consented. In the wardroom, about the size of a Pullman drawing room, the patient was stretched out on a table beneath a floodlight. The mate and assisting officers, dressed in reversed pajama tops, masked their faces with gauze. The crew stood by the diving planes to keep the ship steady: the cook boiled water for sterilizing. A tea strainer served as an antiseptic cone. A broken-handled scalpel was the operating instrument. Alcohol drained from the torpedoes was the antiseptic. Bent tablespoons served to keep the muscles open. After cutting through the layers of muscle, the mate took twenty minutes to find the appendix. Two hours and a half later, the last catgut stitch was sewed, just as the last drop of ether gave out. Thirteen days later the patient was back at work. Admittedly this was a much more magnificent feat than if it had been performed by trained surgeons in a fully equipped operating room of a modern hospital. Study this analogy and you will know the real meaning of Christ’s words. “Greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.” For Christ, perfect God, to work directly on a lost soul to quicken and bring out of death and into life is great, but for Him to do the same thing through us is a greater work.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

The Preacher’s Call, Part 1 (Proclaim #70)

Welcome to episode #70 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Luke 9:60 which reads: “Jesus said unto him, Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God.”

Our quote on preaching today is from Charles Spurgeon. He said, “Whatever subject I preach, I do not stop until I reach the Savior, the Lord Jesus, for in Him are all things.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts, the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “The Preacher’s Call, Part 1” from “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs.

We have already mentioned that each preacher must be gifted, called, and equipped by the Lord for “the work of the ministry.” All Christians are “saints by calling,” but not all are “preachers by calling”. Let us therefore consider some things regarding this divine “call” to preach the Word.

I. IT IS INDIVIDUAL, OR PERSONAL
It is purely a matter between each Christian and his Lord and Master. The authority of the call is the prerogative of Christ alone, for He calls whomsoever He wills. He said to His disciples, “Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain”. We read that Christ called “unto Him whom He would”. Of Paul, the Lord said, “He is a chosen vessel unto Me, to bear My name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel”. Both secular and theological education are utterly useless, apart from this call of the Lord.

The fact that a person possesses a natural fluency of speech and facility of expression does not, in itself, qualify that person to preach. It is good, but not sufficient, to have natural gifts and possess physical, mental and educational fitness. Alexander MacLaren spoke of a certain preacher who was “fatally fluent in speech.” Though these natural gifts are necessary, they are not enough. The fact of their possession does not constitute a call to preach.

1. It involves personal heart-dealing alone with God
God is the God of the individual. There is no such thing as “mass production” in this matter. Preachers are not turned out by the dozen. The Lord burdens the heart of an individual, impresses him personally with the necessity of preaching the Gospel, and gives him that holy urge to be a mouthpiece for deity. It is not without significance that Isaiah, called of God to preach His word, speaks repeatedly of his message as “a burden” which must be delivered. Paul spoke of it as a “necessity” laid upon him and exclaimed, “Yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!”. Joshua, as he fell upon his face before the Captain of the host of the Lord, asked, “What saith my Lord unto His servant?” There, all alone with his Lord, his shoes removed (for it was holy ground), Joshua bowed his head, received his call and commission and then went forth to do exploits for God.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

Our Public Prayer, Part 4 (Proclaim #68)

Welcome to episode #69 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Luke 4:43-44 which reads: “And he said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore am I sent. And he preached in the synagogues of Galilee.”

Our quote on preaching today is from Edward Payson. He said, “Prayer is the first thing, the second thing, the third thing necessary to a minister. Pray, then my dear brother; pray, pray, pray.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts, the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “Our Public Prayer, Part 4” from “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon.

The strongest objection exists to the constant repetition of the word “Lord,” which occurs in the early prayers of young converts, and even among students. The words, “O Lord! O Lord! O Lord!” grieve us when we hear them so perpetually repeated. “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain,” is a great commandment, and although the law may be broken un-wittingly yet its breach is still a sin and a very solemn one.

God’s name is not to be a stop-gap to make up for our want of words.

Take care to use most reverently the name of the infinite Jehovah. The Jews in their sacred writings either leave a space for the word “Jehovah,” or else write the word, “Adonai,” because they conceive that holy name to be too sacred for common use: we need not be so superstitious, but it were well to be scrupulously reverent. A profusion of “ohs!” and other interjections may be well dispensed with; young speakers are often at fault here. Avoid that kind of prayer which may be called– though the subject is one on which language has not given us many terms–a sort of peremptory demanding of God. It is delightful to hear a man wrestle with God, and say, “I will not let thee go except thou bless me,” but that must be said softly, and not in a hectoring spirit, as though we could command and exact blessings from the Lord of all. Remember, it is still a man wrestling, even though permitted to wrestle with the eternal I AM. Jacob halted on his thigh after that night’s holy conflict, to let him see that God is terrible, and that his prevailing power did not lie in himself. We are taught to say, “Our Father,” but still it is, “Our Father who art in heaven. ” Familiarity there may be, but holy familiarity; boldness, but the boldness which springs from grace and is the work of the Spirit; not the boldness of the rebel who carries a brazen front in the presence of his offended king, but the boldness of the child who fears because he loves, and loves because he fears. Never fall into a vainglorious style of impertinent address to God; he is not to be assailed as an antagonist, but entreated with as our Lord and God. Humble and lowly let us be in spirit, and so let us pray. Pray when you profess to pray, and don’t talk about it. Business men say, “A place for everything and everything in its place;” preach in the sermon and pray in the prayer. Disquisitions upon our need of help in prayer are not prayer. Why do not men go at once to prayer–why stand beating about the bush; instead of saying what they ought to do and want to do, why not set to work in God’s name and do it? In downright earnestness, address yourself to intercession, and set your face towards the Lord. Plead for the supply of the great and constant needs of the church, and do not fail to urge, with devout fervor, the special requirements of the present time and audience. Let the sick, the poor, the dying, the heathen, the Jew, and all forgotten classes of people, be mentioned as they press upon your heart.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

The Road From Text to Sermon, Part 9 (Proclaim #68)

Welcome to episode #68 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Luke 12:11-12 which reads: “And when they bring you unto the synagogues, and unto magistrates, and powers, take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say: For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.”

Our quote on preaching today is from J.C. Ryle. He said, “To attain simplicity in preaching is of the utmost importance to every minister who wishes to be useful to souls.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts, the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “The Road from Text to Sermon, Part 9” from “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

The apostles used every legitimate means available to them to win assent from their audiences. When Peter preached his Pentecost sermon, he reasoned from both experience and Scripture to prove that “God has made Him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom you crucified” (Acts 2:36 NASB). Jesus’s miracles, the crucifixion, the resurrection, David’s tomb, the phenomena of Pentecost: those verifiable events carried the weight of Peter’s argument. Joel and David, both honored by the Jewish audience as inspired prophets, were quoted as witnesses to interpret what the people experienced. In both writing and preaching the apostles adapted themselves to their readers and listeners to establish the validity of their ideas.

When Paul addressed the intellectuals on Mars Hill, he discussed natural theology—the fact of creation and its necessary implications. Although he set forth biblical concepts, the apostle never quoted the Old Testament because the Bible meant nothing to his pagan Greek audience. Rather, he supported his arguments by referring to their idols and poet-philosophers and by drawing deductions from common life. In quoting the Greek poets and philosophers, of course, Paul was not endorsing Athenian philosophy. The Old Testament was the authority for both his major and minor assertions (as the references in the margin of the Nestle Greek text demonstrate). In quoting the pagan sources, Paul merely took advantage of insights consistent with biblical revelation that were more easily accepted by his hearers.

While competence requires that we understand how the biblical writers established validity, it also demands that we wrestle with listeners’ questions such as, “Is that true?” and “Can I really believe that?” In a past generation, perhaps, we might have counted on a sense of guilt lying on the fringes of a congregation’s thought. Today we can count on an attitude of questioning and doubt. Our educational system and the mass media contribute to this pervasive skepticism. Advertisers have created an audience of doubters who shrug off dogmatic claims and enthusiastic endorsements, no matter who makes them, as nothing more than a pitch from the sponsor.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!

The Qualifications of the Preacher, Part 38 (Proclaim #67)

Welcome to episode #67 of PROCLAIM! — the podcast that teaches every Bible-believing Christian how to preach the Gospel by any means necessary in many different settings, including using the internet and the new “podcast pulpit”.

Our Scripture Verse on preaching is Luke 9:1-2 which reads: “Then he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases. And he sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick.”

Our quote on preaching today is from Charles Swindoll. He said, “If I ever wrote a book on preaching, it would contain three words: Preach the Word. Get rid of all the other stuff that gets you sidetracked; preach the Word.”

In this podcast, we are using as our texts, the following three books: “Lectures to My Students” by Charles H. Spurgeon; “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs; and “Biblical Preaching” by Haddon W. Robinson.

Today, our topic is titled “The Qualifications of the Preacher, Part 38” from “The Preacher and his Preaching” by Alfred P. Gibbs.

(e) Criticism. The preacher should both seek and welcome criticism from others on subject matter, expressions, pronunciation, grammar, gesticulations, mannerisms, and anything else that would hinder the effective presentation of the message through him. We shall refer more fully to this matter later on.

Jeff D. Day has finely expressed this thought, “Really trying to preach involves persistent, careful, and prayerful preparation of the sermon in all its details, its doctrines, its homiletical order, its vigorous English, its grammatical correctness, its proper pronunciation of the words, its winsome delivery, in modulated vocalization, clear enunciation and correct gesticulation.” All this sounds like hard work, and it most certainly is, but it is well worthwhile, for “payday” is coming!

May it be ours not only to pray for “the wisdom that cometh from above”, but to use every opportunity to develop our capacity for that wisdom. This shall better fit us for the task of being “ambassadors for Christ,” and enable us to earn the “well done, thou good and faithful servant” of our blessed Lord and Master.

We used quite a little space for this matter of the qualifications of the preacher, and for good reason. We cannot disassociate the preacher from his preaching. We must remember the divine order in Paul’s injunction, “Take heed unto thyself and unto the doctrine [teaching]”.

The ECS Ministries (Emmaus Correspondence School Ministries), P.O. Box 1028, Dubuque, Iowa 52004-1028, has some splendid courses on the Scriptures that should prove useful. Contact them for a catalog by phone at 563 585 2070 or on the web—www.ecsministries.org, also email—ecsorders@emmaus.org. This is a sister-ministry to the Emmaus Bible School, of Dubuque, Iowa. —EDITOR.

Let’s Pray —

Dear friend, if you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, may I encourage you to get to know Him today.

First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”

Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.

Romans 10:9-13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Until next time, may God bless you!