There is a lot of preaching today that does not address the reality of our membership in the Kingdom of God. Neither does it address the reality of the “present evil world” (Galatians 1:4) that we might be delviered from it. We often fall into the trap of preaching that is designed to merely provides tools to help us become better situated or more successful in this present world rather than helping us to become ambassodors of the coming Kingdom.

Not Celebrating Poverty

Please note, I am not talking about “celebrating poverty” or “making poverty a virtue” as some have accused me of. I am talking about the reality that the Kingdom is our focus. Some of us will become successful down here. God will provide opportunities to some of us to place us in visible and even powerful locations like Daniel and Joseph, but that was not their focus. Their focus was the kingdom. Their focus was to do God’s will. Their focus was to be ambassoders of God’s kingdom.

I often refer to a sermon where the preacher gave a lesson in how to get ahead at work using the story of Joseph. His sermon title was “How to be successful at Work.” His points were something along the lines of, “You must be tenatious”. “You must not take no for an answer.” “You must never give up.” ETc. Such sermons don’t confront the culture either inside or outside the communion of faith. it doesn’t shake the lost into a realization of their condition. It doesn’t demonstrate to the culture that it is different than the principles of God.

Virtual Debate As Preaching?

But those are other kinds of sermons. I heard another sermon once where the preacher did a virtual debate between presidential candidates on a few select topics. At the end of the discussion the people came away feelign that one party was clearly God’s choice and the other was akin to voting for the devil. You have all had such discussions usually it is the republican side that is God’s side in these discussions, but then sometimes it is the Democrats who are God’s choice. Such a mentality comes woefully short of the reality that neither side is God’s Kingdom. Yes, voting is our responsibility as citizens, but ultimately we know that neither side is even a vague approximation of the Kingdom of God.

The Gospel is crazy different. It is do different that it requires a change to understand it. A change called a new birth. It comes and tells a scientifically oriented society that a dead man rose from the grave and that he is still with us by an overriding spirit. It tells us that even though we see pain and heartache that is not God’s ultimate intention and all you see will be remade. It tells us that those who the world considers “losers” are actually the winners in the kingdom of God. It tells us that being nice is not the kingdom of God, it is a radically different way of being in this world.

Let The Gospel Confront

But we often take these confrontational messages and set them aside. “It is hard for the rich to get to the kingdom” (Matthew 19:24) becomes, don’t worry about your riches, just pay 10% and you will be all right. No, we have removed the “offense of the cross” (Galatians 5:15) and replaced it with a flag being waved by an elephant or a donkey.

So go ahead dear preacher. It may not seem to make sense, but how could the gospel make sense? A dead man raised, good triumphing over evil, and the losers are actually the winners. Go head and preach about one who gave his life for another. go head even though it don’t make sense. The last time some folks really got hold of that message. Somebody said that they “turned the world upside down.” Acts 17:6

3 thoughts on “Preaching That Is Not Conventional

  1. Instead of being perhaps sidetracked with the teaching on how to get more stuff, or gain a better position in this society. Why not get more of God and allow Him to bless us according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus, Php. 4:19. I truly believe that God will do a better job than we can, Amen. Once we align ourselves with the Word of God, we will see that all we have to do is seek more of Him. That takes all of the pressure out, and avoids the greed factor from entering in! Matt. 6:33 states, “But seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His Righteousness, and ALL these things shall be added unto you.” When God used the phrase, “ALL THESE THINGS,” it sounds to me like He meant ALL THESE THINGS! Now we no longer have the heavy burden of spending our whole life seeking more and never being satisfied. That burden has been lifted. Sounds like we only have the one priority now! Lets be thankful and enjoy doing it God’s way so that He will get the glory! Beautiful article Pastor Cox II…

  2. I could not agree with you more. Though I believe and stand in need of blessings and prosperity I am sick of these messages. These things are not the foundation of our faith. Let’s teach people to “seek ye first the kingdom of God. . .”

  3. Pastor Gus Patton says:

    Thank you for this article, it speaks to a lot of things that have been saying for years! These “new wave” preachers are not concerning themselves about the Kingdom of God but only what they think that they or others deserve. We deserve condemnation but through the twins of grace and mercy, by way of Jesus’ death, God has given us more than we deserve.

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