Great preaching helps my preaching. John Piper and his focus on the glory of God, Ray Ortlund and his love for the nuclear grace of Christ, and Russell Moore and his winsome seriousness on spiritual warfare and the power of our Galilean and Galactic Emperor—these guys have taught me a ton.
A Mammal for a Preaching Professor
But lately, the best lesson I’ve learned about preaching is from a beaver. That’s right—a dam-building mammal. Now, this is no ordinary beaver, he’s Mr. Beaver, the one from Narnia.
Mr. Beaver knows why he exists. He knows why he is speaking with the Sons and Daughters of Adam and Eve. And while reading the tales of Aslan to my daughter, I was struck by the preaching ministry of Mr. Beaver. As he is telling the children about Aslan and the White Witch, we read:
“But shall we see him?” asked Susan.
“Why, Daughter of Eve, that’s what I brought you here for. I’m to lead you where you shall meet him,” said Mr. Beaver.
There’s the heart of preaching. The heart of all biblical ministry. “I’m to lead
Take them to The Lion
Every sermon is pointing people to Aslan. No fluff, no distractions, always and only Christ crucified and risen from the dead (1 Cor. 2:2). The Sons and Daughters of Adam and Eve fill our churches every week, and the Serpent parading around in lion’s clothing is breathing down their necks, day after day. Our job is simple: take them to Jesus. “Sir, we want to see Jesus” (John 12:21).
We are showing the sheep the way, the where, the how, the why of seeing King Jesus. We are taking people through Scriptures, exegeting—pointing and proclaiming—”There’s Jesus! Look at him and live. Look at him and be filled with hope. Look, he’s offering you forgiveness. Look, he loves you. Look, he’s leading you.”
We all need to meet him.
Brother pastor, we lead our flocks to the Lion. The good Lion. The one who will devour, not us, but our flesh—our sin—and give us new life. He frees us. He will breathe life into us. That’s why we invite people to check out our churches. Not to enjoy the show, but to catch a glimpse of the Great Lion of Judah, nailed to a tree and then roaring from his throne, alive and well, in the heavenly places.