The Place of Power in Preaching
I have had the privilege of preaching God’s word and
seeing His presence move over and audience and hundreds of listeners respond to
His word. I have also preached and in humility, emptied the house. I have
watched people stand in the rain and listen to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and
refuse to leave until the last word was said and the last prayer was prayed. I
have also to my dismay waited for people to come to church while it was raining
and hardly anyone arrived.
When God takes a man who makes himself available to Him and
says, “Go and preach in the power with which I have endowed you,” he wil see
great and mighty things happen.
God says, “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are
your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the
earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts"
"So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will
not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without
succeeding in the matter for which I sent it" (Isaiah 55:11).
I am convinced after forty years of ministry that the power
is not in the messages, or the messenger, but in the Lord Jesus Christ. The
power is in the Lord. The true power lies in Christ. “Out of His mouth goes the
sharp two-edged sword” (Rev. 1:16).
God does not deposit a certain amount of power in man; He
retains the power in Himself. Infinite resources are found in Him alone. It is
only as we make ourselves available to Him and allow Him to work in and through
us that we see Him do great and mighty things.
“All power is in Jesus, and Jesus is with His people,” said
Spurgeon. Jesus said, “Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age”
(Matt. 28:20). He is here right now.
The power that brings a person to a saving knowledge of
Jesus Christ is the Word of God. It is not our performance, or imagination,
personality, illustrations, or our creativity. God’s Word is the source of all
power in creation and redemption. Every sermon and every Bible study are a
waste of words if they are not filled with Christ’s word. We must have God’s
Word and nothing else. It is not your word; it is God’s Word that changes the
world and raises the dead.
The Holy Spirit takes the preached word and applies it to
the heart. He melts the soul in repentance and brings a person to faith in
C. H. Spurgeon said, “People are disturbed and troubled by
the real gospel: under the false gospel they can sleep into destruction. Bring
out the sword: it is made to wound; let it exercise its salutary sharpness.”
The sword of God’s word cuts at sin to the very depths of
the soul. "For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any
two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both
joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid
bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do" (Hebrews 4:12-13).
Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006
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