A friend recently asked me what I thought of some of the latest, more controversial, preachers. We discussed the matter for a moment, and I encouraged him to find a few good preachers he could trust and stick with learning from them. This begs the question though… What should I find in a preacher who’s worth my time?
In Philippians 1:15-18, Paul gives us at least seven qualities of great preachers that we ought to look for in those we follow.
Great preachers are interested in encouraging and equipping the saints for the work of the ministry. As with John the Baptist, great preachers realize Christ must increase, while we must decrease (Jn. 3:30).
Great preachers preach from a heart of love. They love their Master and love His people, and they strive wholeheartedly to bring more of them into His presence.
Great preachers realize that the call to Christian service is not an easy road. They don’t expect that following God will mean an increase in health and wealth. Rather, they recognize that in our weakness our Father’s power is magnified (1 Co. 12:8-10).
Great preachers recognize that there is a spiritual assault on the Gospel that comes in many different forms. For this reason, they know the Gospel, they internalize the Gospel, they boldly proclaim the Gospel, they’re willing to go to jail for the Gospel, and they’ll give their lives in defense of the Gospel.
Great preachers use their platform as a resource through which to minister to the hearts of God’s people. They recognize that God wants to speak through them to serve His flock, so they yield themselves to this purpose.
Great preachers are sincere in their speech and the presentation of their message. They speak in their own God-given voice, from a position of authenticity that reaffirms the importance and urgency of what they’re saying.
Great preachers are only interested in speaking truth. They realize it is the TRUTH that sets people free and apart from speaking truth, there is absolutely zero power in their message.
What others qualities would you suggest we look for in the preachers we follow?