Monday, February 25, 2013

I'm finishing a book and it's...

I sat there trying to come up with the right word.  It's...


It's good.  It's powerful.  It's a reminder.  It's inspiring.

The book is for my next doctoral class with Dr. David Larsen, preaching professor at TEDS.  The book is his historical survey of biblical preaching from the Old Testament to today.

It's astounding.

I keep coming back to this very simple formula.  But formula's not the right word.  It's more like a recipe.  But it's sequential, so there's something about the timing of it all where one follows the other.

I know it's simple.  I know I've heard it all before.  But the wave-after-wave testimonies from the lives I'm reading about has a powerful effect of bringing it home, making it fresh, and challenging me.

The formula-recipe goes like this:  text - holiness of life - Gospel.

Wave after wave.  Wave after wave.  Preacher after preacher.  Century after century.  Movement after movement.  Wave after wave.  They all have the same refrain:  text - holiness - Gospel.

I'm seeing it in how God shaped their lives and the lives of their listeners through them.  He sparked revivals, movements, denominations, and consequential stirrings through this simple sequence.

It all begins with the text.  And holiness of life must match it.  And the Gospel must ring forth truly and clearly.

And it changes people's lives.  Amen.  May it ever be so in me, in your pastor, and in the pastors around the world who are committed to Jesus.  Amen.

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