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Preaching the Word

By A.W. Tozer


      Again, the Christian minister must have a word from God for the teen-aged, the middle-aged and the very aged. He must speak to the scholar as well as to the ignorant; he must bring the living Word to the cultured man and woman and to the vulgarian who reads nothing but the sports page and the comic strip. He must speak to the sad and to the happy, to the tender-minded and to the tough-minded, to those eager to live and to some who secretly wish they could die. And he must do this all in one sermon and in a period of time not exceeding 45 minutes. Surely this requires a Daniel, and Daniels are as scarce in the United States as in Babylon in 600 B.C. To add to the pastors burden is the knowledge that in each service there will likely be a few lost sons who should come home, some who never loved God at all and some who lost the love they had. So he must call sinners to repentance, warn the unruly, comfort the feebleminded, instruct, reprove, rebuke, encourage, console and exhort all at the same time, or at least on the same day. This is the situation stated baldly, but it is not actually as difficult as it looks. I said that the preacher appears to be at cross purposes with himself; but it is in appearance only, for what seems to be confusion is but the seamy side of the tapestry. The artistic pattern is on the other side.

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