Preaching in the Power of the Holy Spirit
Four practices to help us stay connected to the power of the Holy Spirit throughout the sermon process.
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Can I be honest with you?
What a horrifying title for an article.
Because I have never met a preacher who didn't believe that their preaching was anything other than done in the power of the Spirit!
And then you add on top of that, that there might be no greater battleground in the body of Christ than the person and work of the Spirit.
But as I write this article, I am going to try my best to unpack what I believe preaching in the power of the Spirit actually looks like.
Are you ready? Here are four practices that help me stay connected to the power of the Spirit throughout the sermon process.
The Spirit of God inspired the Word of God. Of course every preacher has read this passage: "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work." (2 Tim. 3:16-17). So plain and simple. This passage means that if your preaching isn't centered on the Word of God, no matter how charismatic you may be, you are not preaching in the power of Spirit.
Boom! (Mic Drop).
I actually think that it is unfortunate that I have to write that. But I do because we live in a day and age, where much "preaching" is really just the pastor telling stories about themselves or anecdotes taken out of some illustration book. Sure, maybe there is a Scripture mentioned here and there. But oftentimes, in those situations, the Bible is used as window dressing instead the foundation, the engineering, and the floor plan of the sermon.
My friends, if you preach the Word of God, you know that you are preaching in the power of the Spirit.
I love to remind people that my job is to "hide behind the Word." It's impossible to preach with prophetic authority when you are preaching yourself or the latest and greatest wisdom of the world. But when you are proclaiming God's Word, you can speak boldly because God says what he means and means what he says.
As I've gotten older and more seasoned in the pulpit, I find myself bathing the messages in prayer more than I ever have. I've realized that one of the keys to preaching in the power of the Holy Spirit is having the message drenched in prayer. That's right. Drenched. Sloppy and soaking wet!
Here's why: the Spirit of God knows who is going to be present when the message is proclaimed. The Spirit also knows all the people who are going to hear the message at a later date on other mediums rather than when it is proclaimed. I know for us at Crossroads Community Church, the messages end up on the radio, television, Facebook, YouTube, podcast, etc. You name the medium and we seek to utilize it. God knows every single person who will interact with the Word preached, no matter the medium. God is so passionate for them that Jesus came on a rescue mission and he will use whatever means necessary to reach them.