The Reasons We Preach: Press the Applicational Force of the Text

Why do we preach? Twenty centuries of Christianity have been so branded by preaching that we rarely question its place or purpose. Yet, if we consistently engage in an endeavor that requires such a costly investment from churches and pastors, we ought to articulate clear reasons for doing it. Everett Wilson claims: "Preaching is the most undemocratic of routines. Week in, week out, people come and listen for a half-hour at a time to someone [similar to] themselves. They do not interrupt; they do not walk out. They can't switch channels. Sometimes the speaker scolds them, and they sit still for it.

Third Sunday after Epiphany: Christian Loyalty and the Key to Church Unity

I once owned a 1997 Pontiac Grand Prix sedan and drove it nearly 200,000 miles before my growing family required a minivan. Early one spring, the automatic transaxle failed. Only first gear and overdrive would function, which made for adventurous driving! I finally managed to get the car to a shop. Upon explaining the problem to the repairman, he asked me how much time had passed since the transaxle was serviced with new fluid and a new filter. I sheepishly replied, "At the factory." He rightly asked, "Did you expect it to keep functioning without performing the necessary maintenance?"