I'm currently blogging through Tony Merida's great book, Faithful Preaching.
Chapter Four: Preaching by the Power of the Spirit
The Spirit of God is essential for faithful preaching. This is Merida's argument in chapter four. First, he looks at how the preacher is called by the Holy Spirit. He uses the acronym "C.A.L.L." to teach important aspects of this summons of God.
- C - Confirmation - Is there internal and external (from the local church) confirmation?
- A - Aspiration - Is there an intense, all-absorbing desire for the work?
- L - Lifestyle - Do you have a lifestyle that is exemplary and above reproach?
- L - Leadership Gifts - Has God given you the necessary spiritual gifts for ministry?
Merida then turns to preaching by the Spirit. He defends our need for God the Spirit in the pulpit. Because of sin in ourselves and our hearers, we need Him to work. He turns to the nature of the Spirit in preaching. Divine "unction" truly comes and is much needed if lives will truly be changed. He lastly looks at the necessities for obtaining the Spirit for preaching. He lists the following as keys:
- acknowledging our dependency upon Christ
- maintaining personal holiness
- praying for God to work through us
- praying for His illumination
- doing our homework
- proclaiming Christ
- working hard to cultivate congregational unity
- asking for the prayers of God's people
Here is Merida's summary:
From start to finish, preaching is a spiritual activity. Spirit-called preachers should maintain a proper balance of diligent study of the Scriptures and a desperate reliance upon the Spirit. Both elements are critical for seeing lives changed and God-glorified. The preacher should do everything that he can for the sovereign Spirit of God to come in power.