In recent years the American church has continued on a path that is systematically moving away from the true Word of God. The Bible itself and expository verse by verse preaching has been substituted with a message that tickles the itching ears of narcissism and elevated personal comfort. We see many pulpits filled with encouraging tips and tricks gleaned from the Bible and taken out of historical and cultural context to suit our hedonistic sensibilities. We hear messages that are high on social justice and low on the calling of sinners to repentance.
Now please don’t get me wrong, I believe in loving service to all people. I am not saying that the church should sit on our hands and only give lip service to our fellow man in his suffering. What I am saying is that our service must be predicated on the preaching of the gospel. What do I mean by this?
The serving work of Christ on earth was a great example of how a believer should live. There is no greater one that we should look to. But sadly, too many Christians in our day and age believe in a way of living that is missing the key element of repentance.
Many believers have subjected themselves to internet sayings and quotes that have little basis in fact. One example is a so called quote that is attributed to Francis of Assisi. You will see this quote featured by people all over Facebook, Twitter and other social media systems.
“Preach the gospel, and if necessary, use words.”
But the truth is that this statement was never recorded to be connected to Francis of Assisi. It cannot be attributed to him in any historical way. Websites all over the world use this so called quote, but in truth … it cannot be proven to be uttered by this great man of God.
Why is this important? Because this statement should never be uttered or propagated by a follower of Jesus Christ because it defies the Holy Scripture.
The Apostle Paul tells us this unequivocally:
2 Timothy 4:1-5  I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom:  preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.  For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions,  and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.  As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry
He says it in Romans as well:
Romans 10:14 How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?
How will they hear without someone preaching?
Don’t be deceived by popular culture and philosophical leanings. God’s word of salvation must be heard to be believed. Human beings must hear the gospel to know the difference between themselves and Almighty God. They must repent and be saved as Jesus so emphatically preached during His earthly ministry.
Yes people will hear our message in the context of our character, but the most important character is not our own but that of the Son of God. We are the herald. We are the waypoint. We are to preach and point to Christ with our actions but even more importantly … with God’s Word.
Be not ashamed or shy about who God is and what He has done for you
Preach the Word … all the time.