Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Preaching on sin and hell

Chad Brand, a theology lecturer at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, explains the temptation not to:

Of course, there are great temptations not to preach on sin(!) Brian McLaren tells us that this is not the way to reach Gen-Xers. Robert Schuller told us this was not the way to reach Boomers. Harry Fosdick told us this was not the way to reach Moderns. I am sure we could find such sentiments all through history, and the reason is that we do not like to be told that we are sinners, and so, preachers who preach on sin take the chance of alienating their congregations, or at least some members of their congregations. Here is the problem with that fear—at a certain level the task of preaching is precisely to alienate. We are to expose the sinfulness of the congregation by preaching the gospel, and such gospel preaching includes preaching on sin. If we are unwilling to do that, then we are, in A. W. Tozer’s words, “water-boys of the pulpit.” Let me explain what I do mean by alienation, and what I don’t mean by it.

The rest of the article is here. (via ACL).

Even here in Sydney, we are told from time to time that we must not preach sin and hell to, for example, depressed teenagers.

Pray that those who teach us theology, and we ourselves, would have a suitably and necessarily robust view of these doctrines, so that we can rightly explain the grace and goodness of God in Jesus Christ.

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