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Christ Centered Preaching
This book review of Christ Centered Preaching by Bryan Chapell is only a brief summary of chapter one.
In chapter one, Bryan Chapell defines the power and witness of God's word. Preaching accomplishes it purpose not because of the preacher's skill but because of the power and witness of the Scriptures proclaimed.
The Nobility of Preaching
Chapell states that the riches of God's word are no one's private treasure, and when we share it wealth, we participate in its highest purpose.
Chapell goes on to say that when we face real people with eternal souls balanced between heaven and hell, the nobility of preaching awes us even as it underscores our inadequacies. In other words, we do not have the eloquence or wisdom to turn people from death to life but the nobility of preaching the word of God does.
The Power of Preaching is in the Word
How God's word converts souls and changes lives is somewhat mysteries. Nevertheless, we must sense the dynamics that give us hope in our own preaching.
The word of God is powerful and without peer. God's word creates (Psalm 33:9), controls (Psalm 147:15-18), persuades (Jeremiah 23-28-29), performs God's purposes (Isaiah 55:10-11) and overrides human motives (Philippians 1:18). It is important for ministers to remember that it is the word preached that accomplishes God's purposes.
The power of God's word was manifested in Jesus Christ where God identified his son as the divine logos. God revealed that his message and his son are inseparable. The Word (Jesus) uses his word (biblical truth) to carry out all God's purposes. The message of salvation always points us to the one who redeems us. As the apostle Paul said, "I am not ashamed of the gospel (message of salvation) because it is the power of God for everyone who believes in Jesus Christ"
The power of preaching is in the word of God. The power for spiritual change resides in the word of God. Preaching the word of God binds the preacher and the people to the only source of true spiritual change. Hearts are transformed when people are confronted with the word of God.
When we preach God's word, we preach with divine authority because we have no authority apart from God's word. Also, when we preach the word of God, we bring the work of the Holy Spirit to bear on other's lives. The apostle Paul said, "God made his light shine in our hearts to give us the kowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. But we have this knowledge in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us" (2 Corinthins 4:6-7).
The Effectiveness of Preaching is in the Testimony
Chapell states that faith in the working of God's word and Spirit does not mean preachers are without responsibility.
For while the apostle Paul taught us of the inherent efficacy of the word of God, he also related his personal resolve to put no stumbling block to the gospel in anyone's path (2 Corinthians 6:3).
Chapell urges preachers to guard their character. The influence of the preachers testimony on the acceptance of the sermon requires preachers to put their lives under the rule of Scripture.
Chapell also urges preachers to champion the grace of God. Emphasis on the character of the preacher is futile and errant without underscoring the gract that conforms one's character and message to God's will.
You may never hear the accolades of the world or pastor a church of thousands, but a life of godliness combined with clear explanation of God's saving and sanctifying graces engages the power of the Spirit for the glory of God.
Christ Centered Preaching by Byran Chapell is a book worth considering for your library.
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Christ Centered Preaching Book Review