Holy Week will soon be upon us and churches will gear up for the big crowd and look forward to setting a higher attendance record than Easter ’11. With all of the preparations, I find myself wondering if Easter really is the most important Sunday of the year.
I’m deeply challenged to present the Gospel as the heart of every message I preach and every opportunity that I have to teach, no matter what the subject is or what day of the year I’m preaching. Seriously, do I really have the right to teach or preach anything if it does not contain the Gospel at its core? I’ve concluded that I don’t! Think about the following list of words that are all great concepts found in the Scripture (The Bible) and at the heart of the Gospel:
Salvation, sanctification, righteousness, remission, sin, judgement, discipleship, sacrifice, perseverance, transformation, repentance, obedience.
Do we really believe in the power of The Gospel? Why are so many shying away from speaking of the Gospel or describing the Gospel in their preaching and teaching? As I find myself preparing for Good Friday and Easter weekend (as well as every other Sunday of the year), reminding myself of the words of Romans 1:16 has become almost like a pregame ritual:
16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes,”
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about relevant teaching and preaching. The truth is, I don’t know any pastor more committed to that than me, that’s why I believe the Gospel MUST be at the core of all content I preach. Nothing is more relevant for any time, any place, any people or any culture than the Gospel; “It is the power of God for salvation”. Creativity, media, lighting, you name it, none of those things can really improve or make the Gospel any more powerful than it already is!
Pastors, let’s check our hearts and see if we really do have conviction that Romans 1:16 is what we believe. If we do believe it, then we’ll live it and preach it, not just during Holy Week, but every opportunity we have to proclaim the Good News to all those who are listening to us.