Monday, February 28, 2011

Preaching About Jesus

Preaching for a Senior Pastor is a bit like ducks to a pond. It is what we do. It is also something we try to do better and better. I can always tell a great deal about people’s spiritual journey when they comment on a Sunday morning message. People will share statements like, “Pastor, that was a great homily.” Or something like, “Pastor, I really got a lot out of your speech today.” Then there is this commitment, “Pastor, God really spoke through you today.” I hope He always does, but the thought of it is a bit humbling, even scary.

The first goal of preaching should be to impact the preacher. Preachers are not merely conduits of communication but hopefully modelers and teachers of life changing truths. Preaching should also be based upon the Word of God and not merely the popular word of the day. So, the preacher has to first be impacted what God has to say then figure out how to communicate what God is teaching him to a larger audience. And then to do that in such a way that people remember the truths taught and live them out in their lives.

This last week, I was studying about Jesus. We are working through our church’s doctrinal statement. I complained a bit to someone that preaching one message about the person and work of Christ was impossible in 30 minutes. They quickly reminded me that I had assigned the topic of the Trinity to our Middle School pastor who preached the week before. He did a fabulous job. I stopped complaining!

As I prepared my message from Hebrews 1:1-4, the outline was rather straight forward. Jesus is the heir of everything, the creator of the world, the complete manifestation of the Father, the sustainer of the universe, the cleanser of sin, and the exalted one. All true, but each could easily be their own sermon series. What could I say and how could I say it that would help people fall in love with Jesus more?

I am not known for my high energy sermon delivery, but I really felt like my outline was going to fall short of truly describing the grandeur and beauty of our Savior. Then I remembered a sermon I had heard in homiletics class in seminary. It was from Dr. S.M. Lockridge  who pastured the Calvary Baptist Church in San Diego for 40 years. This man could preach! He is now with the Lord, but he preached a message entitled “That’s My King.” In that message is the best 3 minute description I have ever heard about Jesus. Modern technology allowed me to share the clip with our church. It made an average and accurate sermon memorable and impactful.

Hopefully the biblical truths about Jesus impacted our church as much as Dr. Lockridge’s description about the indescribable person and work of Christ did in my heart as a young seminary student. If you would like to experience the best 3 minute narrative of Jesus you will ever hear. Then go to You Tube and search for “That’s My King” by Dr. S.M. Lockridge.  

I hope you don’t fall in love with the oration as much as you listen in awe about the God of all Creation. Blessings. Pastor Chico