Prophetic Voice or an Echo?

Preachers cannot fall into the trap of preaching only what people want to hear. We all have heard sermons and experienced worship that was not relevant to our situation. To counteract this we sometimes seek to ask the question what to people want. What questions do our people want addressed in a sermon. While such questions are valuable, they can never blunt the prophetic witness.

While we ask what the people want to hear or what the people want to have addressed, which are important and valuable questions, we also must ask what do the people NEED to hear? It is easy to get caught up into preaching things that will tickle the ears of congregants.

We should always remember that we don’t always desire to hear what we need to hear most. The gospel always confronts the world we live in in creative ways that need to be explored by the preacher. There are some aspects of the gospel that are always fun to preach. There are aspects of the gospel that people want to hear all the time, but then there are aspects of the gospel that confront us and the world in uncomfortable ways. Let us preach the gospel and let it confront the world. Let us not just preach what sounds good and feels good to preach.

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