Preaching: Truth Divorced From Life

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.—James 1:22

There is scarcely anything so dull and meaningless as Bible doctrine taught for its own sake. Truth divorced from life is not truth in its Biblical sense, but something else and something less….

No man is better for knowing that God in the beginning created the heaven and the earth. The devil knows that, and so did Ahab and Judas Iscariot. No man is better for knowing that God so loved the world of men that He gave His only begotten Son to die for their redemption. In hell there are millions who know that. Theological truth is useless until it is obeyed. The purpose behind all doctrine is to secure moral action….

Any man with fair pulpit gifts can get on with the average congregation if he just “feeds” them and lets them alone. Give them plenty of objective truth and never hint that they are wrong and should be set right, and they will be content.

On the other hand, the man who preaches truth and applies it to the lives of his hearers will feel the nails and the thorns. He will lead a hard life, but a glorious one. May God raise up many such prophets. The church needs them badly. Of God and Men, 25-28.

“Lord, I want to be one of those bold prophets, faithfully declaring Your word, no matter the consequences. Enable me, by Your Spirit, I pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

Worship: Busy, Busy, Busy

For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart—these, O God, You will not despise.—Psalm 51:16-17

There is all around us, however, a very evident and continuing substitute for worship. I speak of the compelling temptation among Christian believers to be constantly engaged, during every waking hour, in religious activity.

We cannot deny that it is definitely a churchly idea of service. Many of our sermons and much of our contemporary ecclesiastical teaching lean toward the idea that it is surely God’s plan for us to be busy, busy, busy—because it is the best cause in the world in which we are involved.

But if there is any honesty left in us, it persuades us in our quieter moments that true spiritual worship is at a discouragingly low ebb among professing Christians.

Do we dare ask how we have reached this state?…

How can our approach to worship be any more vital than it is when so many who lead us, both in the pulpit and in the pew, give little indication that the fellowship of God is delightful beyond telling? Whatever Happened to Worship?, 26-27.

“Oh Lord, forgive me for so often falling into the ‘busy, busy, busy’ trap. I pray indeed that the people with whom I come into contact today might see that for me ‘the fellowship of God is delightful beyond telling.’ Amen.”

via Bible Gateway