Preachers, Offend People This Sunday

Offensive for offensiveness sake is really offensive.

Preachers walk the line every Lord’s day between offending and being a jerk. Brothers, I think the best to avoid being a jerk, is to just let the Bible say what it says. Don’t be afraid to watch the Spirit point out our unrighteousness or self-righteousness.

Zigging when the Bible is zagging is a bad route for Preachers to take. And dropping zingers out of spite, anger, or bitterness is also a scenic router Preachers must avoid. A wise preacher once said that the aim of our teaching is love from a pure heart.

Be Bold

Don’t back-peddle when the Bible stomps on the gas. God’s word is filled with challenging, convicting, perplexing, and downright offensive verses and truths. Teachers of God’s word will be tempted to soften the wallop with a what-this-really-means-is hot take on the offending verse of truth. Since we can’t silence a thunderstorm, we’ll just look silly trying.

Let the Bible be the Bible. It’s highly profitable for the people (2 Tim. 3:16–17). Don’t dull the sword. Don’t wrap your Bible in eggshells. When the Bible is roaring, roar with it.

Read the text with confidence. Point out the potent words. Lean into the tension, not away from it. Pattern yourself, not after your favorite podcaster, but after the Apostles.

Get Apostolic

Peter didn’t pump the brakes when he told the crowd, “You crucified the Son of God! It’s time to repent”. When’s the last time you called people to repeat, to turn from their sin and trust Jesus? I just checked the weather, and this Sunday looks like a great day to call people to Jesus.

Paul didn’t dilute his doctrine on Mars Hill when he told a group of idolaters about the only true God, the only one they aren’t worshipping. The crowds take offense to Paul’s points and his preaching of the risen Jesus. Get bold. Get apostolic.

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