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Speaking with Authority

The preacher an audience looks up to.

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Preachers have to be more than "fellow strugglers." No one is helped by "You're a loser; I'm a loser; let's keep losing together."

People want to believe you have taken your own advice, and, while you've not arrived, you're on the way. You'll never learn to be a .300 hitter by watching three .100 hitters. You study a .325 hitter. Although he will occasionally strike out, he knows how to hit.

Likewise, people want to listen to somebody who knows what the struggle is, but who has taken the Bible's message seriously and knows how to hit.

Of course, we identify with the needs and experiences of our people; we're every bit as human as they are. But our task is to speak a word that is qualitatively different from normal conversation. Effective preaching combines the two and gives people hope that they can be better than they are.

When the combination is right, we preach with authority, which is different from being an authoritarian. Preaching with authority means you've done your homework. You know ...

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