WHY I PREACH THE BIBLE
There’s an old saying among evangelicals that I believe is true. “Where Scripture speaks, God speaks.” God has chosen to reveal Himself through His written word- which in itself tells us something. Among other things, it reminds us truth is objective and outside of us. God chose to reveal Himself through language which can convey thought more clearly than any other expression. Language can be used subjectively, but it is objective because it is outside of our experience and can be tested by the insights and wisdom of others. It’s how we reach agreement with other people-we discuss ideas until we find consensus even at the level of the most intricate details. Only language allows us that depth of precision in relationship with other people. Words are powerful.
When describing Himself, God is satisfied to be described not only as the “God of the Word” but also as the “Word of God” (John 1:1)! When we worship the God who calls Himself “the Word,” that description itself suggests a lot about the best way to talk about God. We can conclude that He is best described through language. Acts of service, visual artistry, musical masterpieces, a warm smile, a welcome embrace, the beauty of an ocean coastline, and other non-verbal forms of communication all play their own significant part in explaining who God is- but the best way to talk about God is to talk (or write) in as clear and precise a way as possible.
That is why I believe in biblical preaching. God uses preaching. Paul, for instance, knew that the word on the street in the ancient Greco-Roman culture dismissed the preaching of the gospel as unsophisticated and “foolish.” He responded to that characterization by being direct and serious but also somewhat facetious. He said, “For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe.” Paul didn’t think his message or his preaching was foolish. He was gouging his critics with their own words. He was suggesting, with a subtle humor, that preaching may be “foolish,” but that “foolishness” was spreading like wildfire and changing lives by the thousands across the “sophisticated” Roman Empire!
I am privileged to preach every week and I have witnessed first hand how the explanation of Scripture can shape ideas, affect moral decisions, and change hearts and minds in dramatic ways. I concluded long ago that the preaching of Scripture has a power to do what no other force can do. It still amazes me every time. Preaching can connect people to God by building faith and by convincing hardened hearts to turn to God (Acts 2:36-37; Romans 10:17).
That’s why I preach. God uses the preaching and teaching of the Bible to change people’s lives-sometimes gradually and sometimes suddenly! If I had my choice of lives I would still choose the one God gave me. I am a Bible preacher. No matter what may change in the culture around me, one conviction remains steady. “Where Scripture speaks, God speaks.”