Tag Archives: Preaching

4 of Satan’s Most Popular Lies

The devil is a dirty liar (John 8:44). His tactics haven’t changed since he lied to Eve in the garden of Eden (Gen. 3). Unfortunately, we fall his lies more often than we’d like to admit.

Here are four of Satan’s most plausible lies He uses today:

  1. Sin doesn’t matter.” Don’t you believe it! Sin does matter. The wages of sin have not changed (Rom. 6:23). We are exhorted, “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye SIN NOT (1 John 2:1).  “Awake to righteousness, and SIN NOT (1 Cor. 15:34).
    Sin will rob you of your peace, your testimony, your health, and your joy.
  2. Holiness is not important.” That’s a lie out of hell. 1 Peter 1:16 says, “Be holy, for I am holy.” We have the HOLY Spirit within us… We read from a HOLY Bible. You are commanded to “present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy” (Rom. 12:1). The truth is: It is God’s will for His children to holy lives.
  3. Church attendance is a waste of time.” Satan would love for you to swallow that lie. Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it (Eph. 5:25). The church is “the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim. 3:15). It is God’s appointed agency through which He does His work today. Paul said, “Unto him be glory IN THE CHURCH” (Eph. 3:21). We admonished to not forsake “the assembling of ourselves together” (Heb. 10:25)? You never be more effective for God outside of a church than you are inside (Mt. 5:14-15 cf. Rev. 1:20). Satan knows this!
  4. Preaching is not relevant.” So many fall for this lie, even those who attend church. They prefer music programs, dramatic productions, or interactive dialogue. “They heap to themselves TEACHERS [not preachers], having itching ears” (2 Tim. 6:3). God has chosen the “foolishness of preaching to save them that believe” (1 Cor. 1:21). The Bible says, “Preach the Word” (2 Tim. 4:2). Satan hates Bible preaching (and Bible preachers). He will do all he can to keep people from the preaching of Gospel.

So, who are you going to believe—God’s Word or Satan’s lie?

SPIRITUAL WORSHIP

Spiritual Worship

I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name. —Psalms 138:2

Many churches have a person who is called “the worship leader” (a relatively new position).  He is not the pastor.  Most of the time, he is the song leader.  It is as if the singing is the worship part of a church service and the preaching is something we tag on in the end.   But, in truth, the real worship leader is the pastor who exalts and magnifies the person of God through the preaching God’s Word.

The relegating of preaching the Word to a secondary role in church is the idea of “seeker sensitive” churches.  “Seeker sensitive” churches try to find out what people are seeking from a church, and then “market” their ministry to give the seeker what they want.  Most people don’t want preaching. They want to be entertained.  This “seeker sensitive” mentality of commercially marketing the church to the world is humanistic.

God did not commission the church to go into the world and find out what it wants so we might accommodate them.   We need to find out what God wants and do it.  God commissioned the church to go into the world and give it what it needs—The preaching of the gospel.

As Craig Conner has well said— “We are not about marketing the church. We are to be churching the market!”

How to Listen to a Sermon

How To Listen To A Sermon

Take heed therefore how ye hear... —Luke 8:18:

While not everyone is called to preach, everyone is called to listen.  Unfortunately, listening to Biblical preaching has fallen on hard times.  There seems to be a disconnect between the pew and the pulpit.

I believe there are several reasons for a decline in the hearing of sound preaching.  Part of the problem may rest with the preacher’s lack of effective sermon preparation.  Another contributing factor is a culture weaned on video games, television, and blockbuster movies (2 Tim. 4:3-4).

For preaching to be effective, the preacher must deliver God’s Word with Holy Spirit power, and the hearer in the pew must listen with Spirit anointed ears. Here are a few things a person can do get more out of the sermon:

First, listen in faith. Hebrews 4:2 says, “For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.”  Remember, preaching is God’s appointed means “to save them that believe(1 Cor. 1:21). Therefore, it is imperative to listen with ears of faith if you expect to profit by the sermon.

Second, listen in awe of God’s Word. This is how the Thessalonians listened. Paul writes, “When ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe (1 Thess. 2:13). Never forget that the Bible the preacher is preaching from is God’s Word.

Third, listen with a prayerful attitude. When young Samuel heard God’s voice, he prayed, “Speak, Lord, for they servant hearth” (1 Sam. 3:9). Have a willingness to obey whatever God says to you.

Fourth, listen intently, avoiding distractions. The devil will do everything he can to get your mind off the preaching of the sermon.

Finally, listen with respect and an appreciation for the preacher. “Esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake” (1 Thess. 5:13).

Pray for your preacher. The more you pray for him, the more you will appreciate his ministry of the Word, and the more effective he will become in delivering God’s message. That’s a WIN / WIN proposition.

A Prayer Before The Sermon

A Prayer Before the Sermon

And now, Lord… grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word. —Acts 4:29

Here is a prayer by the late great African-American attorney, songwriter, and Professor of Creative Literature at Fisk University, James Weldon Johnson (1871-1938),  from the first and third stanzas of his poem-prayer-sermon entitled, “Listen, Lord – A Prayer:”

O Lord, we come this morning

Knee-bowed and body-bent

Before Thy Throne of Grace.

O Lord – this morning –

Bow our hearts beneath our knees,

And our knees in some lonesome valley.

We come this morning –

Like empty pitchers to a full fountain,

With no merit of our own.

O Lord – open up a window of Heaven,

And lean out far over the battlements of Glory,

And listen this morning.

And now, O Lord, this man of God,

Who breaks the Bread of Life this morning –

Shadow him in the hollow of Thy hand,

And keep him out of the gunshot of the Devil.

Take him Lord – this morning –

Wash him with hyssop inside and out,

Hang him up and drain him dry of sin.

Pin his ear to the wisdom-post,

And make his words sledge hammers of Truth –

Beating on the iron heart of sin.

Lord God, this morning –

Put his eye to the telescope of Eternity,

And let him look upon the paper walls of time.

Lord, turpentine his imagination,

Put perpetual motion in his arms,

Fill him full of the dynamite of Thy power,

Anoint him all over with the oil of Thy Salvation,

And set his tongue on fire. Amen.

I would have liked to hear the sermon he preached after praying that prayer!

Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ. —Colossians 4:13