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Issue #42: This Emphasis In Your Preaching Will Give Your Point a Greater Punch

Feeding & Leading the Sheep

Every preacher wants to get better…at least the ones worth their salt do. We recognize the importance of preaching well. Sermons present truth to people, and God uses them to bring conviction, salvation, and hope.

However, sermons are delivered by imperfect people to other imperfect people. Sermons are addressed to sinners and sufferers. This means not every truth from Scripture will always be received in the manner for which it is intended. This is where we must take one extra step as we deliver those truths.

That is the subject of this week’s newsletter.

The Inner-Lawyer

Everyone has what I like to call an “inner-lawyer.” This is the little defense attorney that pops up to object to things we disagree with when we first hear them. This reaction often happens in many areas of life when things we hear or experience go against our preconceived ideas on a subject.

Our inner-lawyers quickly rise up to say “yeah, but…”, and refute the point we just heard. This usually happens quietly in our hearts and minds. As preachers, we need to understand this is happening to our flock throughout our sermons. As we proclaim truths about God’s character, God’s ways, our nature and problems, the plan of salvation, the promise of the gospel, and the hope we have in Christ, many listeners have inner-lawyers rising up to “yeah, but” our point.

We might say something like, “There is no such thing as senseless suffering in God’s world, because He is in control.” Immediately, somebody’s inner-lawyer rises up to say, “But if God is in control, then why does He allow suffering to persist?” or “I can’t see any reason why God allowed that innocent person to be shot.” Inner-lawyers exist in every seat.

It is important in our sermon prep and delivery to ask ourselves the question: how might the flesh rebel against this point? This question provides us insight into how to further address the questions that may be raised by those seated in our church services.

1 Actionable Tip

Address the inner-lawyer within your people as you preach,
and you will increase the punch in your point.

When we anticipate the opposition of the point we are making by the inner-lawyers of those in the congregation, we are able to respond to their objection in our sermon, and land the point with more power. This solidifies the point, planting it deeper into the hearts and minds of our people, rather than simply stating it. Addressing their internal reactions packs the punch with more force.

Practice this as you read over your sermon. Make notes about how people might react to the point and how you can answer their questions. As you do this, your preaching effectiveness will increase significantly.

Opportunities for Students & College Age Young Adults

Are you helping the students and college-age kids in your church stand firm against the opposition coming at them in the culture? If you’re not actively equipping them on issues of gender and sexuality, you can be sure the culture is. We’re here to help.

Join us October 13-15 at Black Mountain, NC (at Ridgecrest Conference Center). An incredible line of speakers will be teaching students about who they are as image-bearers of God. These foundations will supply students with important understanding of their identity. Plan to bring your students. It’s going to be a fantastic conference.

And we have our Arise Camps for students summer 2024. These resources exist to help keep your students in the fight. Partner with us in helping them fight the good fight of faith in a world that wants to snuff it out.