General Advice

… for the Ministry

  • You are a servant of the Word. Follow Him. The Way of the Cross is a lonely, narrow path but it leads to heaven.
  • Be more afraid of God than you are of the people. It is not the one who signs the checks who provides daily bread. Do the right thing. Tell the Truth. Suffer the consequences. That is what a servant of Christ does.
  • It is the Preaching Office. Don’t forget that. Your relationship to the congregation is the same as the prophets to Israel. Work on teaching and converting your own people – which includes scores of folks not on the books. Preach the Gospel to them – from the pulpit, the podium, the bedside, and behind the desk. They come looking for marital advice? Tell them about Jesus dying for them. They come looking for sympathy and a listening ear? Tell them about Jesus dying for them. They have a new baby, lost their jobs, are afraid of retirement? Tell them about Jesus dying for them. No matter what the circumstances, what the situation, you preach Christ crucified. Never compromise the simple Truth that has saved you.
  • Believe your own preaching. Jesus died also for you. He called you to this Ministry. He knows what He is doing. As good or as bad as it gets, it will not last forever. He is coming back to claim His own.

… for Preaching

  • Always preach Law and Gospel. There is nothing else. It is always what God’s people need.
  • Always tell the Truth. Don’t water something down to avoid giving offense or to make it more palatable.
  • Always preach for conversion, as a dying man to dying men. Preach as though this is the only and last sermon your hearers will hear.
  • Always preach against yourself. You are the only one you really know. Your sins and weaknesses are the same as the hearers’. Yours is the common lot of man. It is the same with the comfort you need and for which you thirst. Preach, also, for yourself.
  • Don’t preach about yourself. Don’t say: “When I was asked to preach I thought . . .” or “When I heard what the text for today was I considered . . .” That only draws attention to yourself. It is not about you. Get to the point. Preach with the authority you have been given. Be confident in the Word of God. Lose yourself in the pulpit.