For The Truth

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Preaching in Earnest

Eddie Goodwin at Ardent Cries provides a helpful snippet from John Broadus, as quoted by Alex Montoya:

Some men by nature are shy, timid, and inhibited with regard to their feelings. Unfortunately, our intellectual and reclusive seminary environment appeals to this temperament. In addition, our fear of appearing overemotional, manipulative and nonintellectual makes us want to subdue any manifestation of emotion, excitement, or pathos in our preaching. One’s nature has as much to do with our style of preaching. No one need despair, however. Just read what John Broadus said more than a century ago, which I still believe holds true today:

The chief requisite to an energetic style is an energetic nature. There must be vigorous thinking, earnest if not passionate feeling, and the determined purpose to accomplish some object, or the man’s style will have not true, exalted energy. It is in this sense emphatically true that an orator is born, not made. Without these qualities one may give valuable instruction; without them one might preach what silly admirers call “beautiful sermons”; but if a man has no force of character, a passionate soul, he will never be really eloquent. There are, however, timid and sensitive men who, when practice has given them confidence and occasion calls out their powers, exhibit far more masterful nature than they ever imagined themselves to possess.” (pp.16-17)

May God grant to those who preach souls so taken up with the truth that the heat as well as the light spills over in our pulpit labours.

Written by Jeremy Walker at The Wanderer


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