God’s book

If you’re a follower of Jesus you listen to a lot of sermons. Would you rather squander that time or benefit from something God might be saying to you?

I’m a preacher, so this topic is a bit awkward! The reason I share this isn’t because I’m fantastic (I’m not), but because God has set aside certain things called “means of grace” which can be a channel of his generosity, guidance and help in our lives. This includes things like prayer, the Bible, Communion… and preaching.

Let’s say you attend church services for 20 years. Let’s say you only attend half of those Sundays. That’s 520 sermons, or about 13,000 minutes of preaching! Don’t you want to use that time effectively? That would certainly be better than struggling to engage.

I spoke about this recently [link below to the audio and an abbreviated text summary]. So I’m going to spend a few devotionals on this topic because I think it’s a vital (yet neglected) aspect of our faith. 

One of the things you need to be proactive about is being confident (or getting confident) in the trustworthiness and authority of the Bible. After all, preaching is based on the Bible.

In a recent article, Dwayne Cline provides this cautionary word: “The prevalent worldview on Scripture has shifted from: it’s God’s Book, to it’s one of God’s Books, to it’s a good book, to it’s a corrupt, unjust, and unethical book. That cultural ideology has penetrated the minds of many believers. They have an inaccurate view of Scripture that is shaped more by culture than by historical, orthodox Christianity. That shift has caused many believers to question, redefine, and even deny the authority of Scripture.”*

If this is an issue for you, you need to do something about it. Ask questions about where it came from and why it can be trusted. Study or talk to others about why it has authority in our lives as Christians. If you don’t, I think you’ll struggle to approach sermons with the kind attentiveness that pleases God. 

Jesus would sometimes say, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear” (Mark 4:9). Have you ever wondered why he said that? Well, my guess is that it’s possible to listen but not truly hear.

Let’s be confident—or get confident—in the Bible. And let’s be open to what God might have to say to us, even through the lips of imperfect preachers.


–[Audio AND Text Summary] – “How to get the most out of a sermon.” You can listen or access the shortened text version here. You can also listen on ‘The Pulse Podcast with Matthew Ruttan.’

–Bible quotes are from the NIV.

You can also listen and subscribe wherever you enjoy podcasts:

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