Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Three dying myths about preaching

Fitch has a nice post "If I Just Preach A Good Sermon-They Will Come: Three Dying Myths (of Christendom) About Preaching." You really need to read the whole post (and comments), but the three myths he says are no longer true are:
  • If you preach a good sermon the church will grow (in numbers).
  • Who you preach to is who will be in your congregation.
  • The goal of preaching is to make the Bible relevant.
He says the kind of preaching we desperately need is... "the proclaiming of the truth out of Scripture over us so as to bring the truth into being... into reality... a speaking forth of an interpretation (from Scripture) of our lives in terms of who God is, the gospel and what He is doing to bring it about in our lives and thru us into the world... It is the re-narrating of our selves corporately into God."

In other words...
The bottom line is, even if you only have ten people left, once we preach for formation, where God’s truth is birthed in and among us, we become shaped for His Mission in the world. We can see things we didn’t see before. We act out of assumptions we didn’t have before. We imagine what God is doing in ways not possible before. And the little congregation of “ten” becomes a powder-keg for Mission and the harvesting of fields ready for the gospel (the mission will grow!). Such preaching is essential to the missional community because it is the means by which the Spirit shapes a community into the reality of God, the Lordship of Christ and His Mission.

I hope I never preach a congregation down to ten people, but I do try to preach for formation. I thought this an interesting "pro-preaching" piece. Nice.