Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Jesus Paradigm in Preaching

Jared at Gospel-Driven Church hits a homerun:
The logic is simple but somehow evasive for so many pastors. If week in and week out you are feeding your congregation a steady diet of self-help, of personal improvement, of application for someone’s walk with Jesus as their “personal” Lord and Savior, you may not exactly be stirring the desire in them to be connected to other believers. If your preaching is consistently of the “How to Win at Work” or “How to Be Your Best You” variety, you are only feeding and coddling the insidious individualism of the average evangelical churchgoer and the consumerist culture he is the product of.
So to continue my discussion yesterday of the Jesus Paradigm in Scripture: Preaching that does not reveal the Jesus paradigm, that uses Scripture self-servingly to promote subjectively defined values that are not the fruit of the Jesus Paradigm, that focuses on someone other than Jesus(i.e. you, the listener, 0r me, the preacher, or so-and-so, the model Christian/Biblical figure) and how he thought, related to the Father, interacted with a desperate world, conducted himself towards the salvation-agenda that God is inexorably committed to, embraced suffering and death; in the end can be defined as self-righteous, performance-rooted, unBiblical preaching, and can do nothing but produce non-disciples. As Jared says elsewhere in the post, there is no magic bullet, though evangelicals insatiably hunger for it. It's just the Gospel, it always has been, and it always will be.

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