Preaching Must Lead People Toward the Image of Christ
In his presentation at the E.Y. Mullins Lectures Pastor John MacArthur made the following assertion which I consider valuable and pivotal for every pastor.
“I have learned through the years that the deeper you go into the things of God, the higher the people go in worship. Shallow preaching produces shallow worship. I can basically walk into a church and listen to the music for 15 minutes and tell you how profound the people’s understanding of the things of God is because it will be reflected in that.
“If people are really going to know what it is to worship God with the mind, they’re going to have to understand the deep things of God, and that doesn’t mean you are oblique, it doesn’t mean you are obscure.
“What is my responsibility as a shepherd? Is it to entertain people? To ignore my people while I talk to the non-people of God? What is the goal of my shepherding and my preaching? It is to conform my people to the image of Christ as much as possible as God uses me as an instrument of the teaching of His Word which does the conforming. The church is precious to me because it is so identified with Jesus Christ.
“I preach only the Word of God, only one book, because it is by the Word of God that sinners are saved and the saved are sanctified. … I leave the effect of that truth to the purposes of God and the mighty work of the Holy Spirit.”