Andreas Kostenberger- The Jesus of the Gospels: An Introduction

On today’s Equipping You in Grace, Dave and Dr. Andreas Kostenberger discuss strategies to read the Gospels, how the Gospels use the Old Testament and how this helps Christians read the Gospel rightly, along with advice for preaching and teaching the Gospels, along...

Suffering Well in Community

I am most definitely not a fisherman. I subscribe to the old saying, “There is a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore like an idiot.” So, maybe I am not the one to use a fishing illustration to begin. However, there is something that even I have picked...

Manual Transmission: the Importance of Having Multiple Gears of Motivation

Few things are more important for spiritual growth than motivation. Unfortunately, many Christians are idealists when it comes to spiritual drive. They think and act as if there is only one sanctioned motive for obedience. The underlying logic of their spirituality is...

The Love and Peace of Christ

Colossians 3:14-15, “14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.” Continuing his discussion of what the new...

#9: Rekindling the First Love[Sermon]

Join Dave as he continues our Revelation series looking at Revelation 2:1–7.

Daily Bites Of God’s Word On The True Nature Of Dying To Self

On this new Daily Bites of God’s Word, Andy discusses the true nature of dying to self, and helps us understand what this means and it’s the importance to the Christian life.
3 Crucial Qualities of All Good Sermons

Posted On January 25, 2019

Anatomy of the Soul

John Calvin once said that the Psalms are an anatomy of all parts of the soul. What the Psalms do is present the idealistic, the realistic, and the optimistic view of the Christian life. In a sense, the whole Bible does that and it’s important that a preacher do that as well.

If you only preach the idealistic part of the Christian life—the Romans 8 part where everything is well and you’re growing in the spirit, you’re being conformed to the image of Christ—then the love of Christ is very real and vibrant in your heart and you know nothing will separate you from the love of Christ. This is wonderfully idealistic.

God will make amends for everything on that great day and I will enter the joy of the Lord.

A Tension

But if you only do that and you don’t talk about the realistic part of struggling with sin—the Romans 7 part—then what will happen is beleaguered believers who really wrestle with sin are going to say, I don’t think I’m even saved—I just can’t live up to that, the bar is way too high.

However, if you only preach the realistic part and you don’t preach that idealistic part, then the believers are going to say, I’ve arrived. There’s nothing more for me to do. This tug of war with sin is going on in me all the time. I love what the preacher is saying, I can identify with it.

If the preacher doesn’t also hold up the idealistic part, then the believer isn’t stretching out, he’s not doing what Paul did when he said: “I forget the things that lay behind and I press forward toward a high prize of the calling of God.” He’s not seeking to grow in holiness. He falls into kind of a blasé settling—a kind of inward contentment that this is all there is to the Christian life, instead of saying there is more to know, there’s more to experience.

A Hopeful Realism

The believer also needs to hear from the pulpit the optimistic preaching of the Christian life: that one day I will be as holy as Jesus is holy and I’ll be married to him forever. I’ll be his bride and there will be a utopian marriage between me and him and in heaven this glorious idealism will be perfected in eternal optimism.

If that truth isn’t taught, then we can sort of stay settled in this life. We put our tent stakes in the soil too deeply and think this earth is all there is. Whereas optimistic preaching about the future teaches us that this life here is just like an introduction to a book and eternity is the whole book and we’re always living with one eye on eternity.

I need that optimistic view of the eternal destiny of the believer—that God will make amends for everything on that great day and I will enter the joy of the Lord. So as a preacher I need to preach all three: realistically, idealistically, and optimistically.

This is a guest article by Joel Beeke, author of Reformed Preaching: Proclaiming God’s Word from the Heart of the Preacher to the Heart of His People. This post originally appeared on crossway.org; used with permission.

Related Posts

Andreas Kostenberger- The Jesus of the Gospels: An Introduction

Andreas Kostenberger- The Jesus of the Gospels: An Introduction

On today’s Equipping You in Grace, Dave and Dr. Andreas Kostenberger discuss strategies to read the Gospels, how the Gospels use the Old Testament and how this helps Christians read the Gospel rightly, along with advice for preaching and teaching the Gospels, along...

Suffering Well in Community

Suffering Well in Community

I am most definitely not a fisherman. I subscribe to the old saying, “There is a fine line between fishing and standing on the shore like an idiot.” So, maybe I am not the one to use a fishing illustration to begin. However, there is something that even I have picked...

The Love and Peace of Christ

The Love and Peace of Christ

Colossians 3:14-15, “14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. 15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.” Continuing his discussion of what the new...

0 Comments

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Weekly Roundup of Links 1/21/2018-1/26/2019 - Servants of Grace - […] 3 Crucial Qualities of All Good Sermons by Joel Beeke https://servantsofgrace.org/3-crucial-qualities-of-all-good-sermons/ […]

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Share47
Tweet12
Reddit
Pin
Share