Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Lloyd-Jones on pretty preaching/Whitefield

Amen and amen to this quote!

"There is nothing that has so often discouraged me, if I may make a personal reference as a preacher, as the failure of people to differentiate between the message and the preaching. You may have a correct and an orthodox message but it does not follow that you are preaching it. The thing that puts Whitefield in a class apart with Rowland is the preaching.
What do I mean? I mean the way in which the message is presented and conveyed. There were other men at the time, as there have been since, who preached the same message, but it was no the preaching of George Whitefield. How can one describe his preaching? You can only describe it as apostolic and seraphic. I like the remark of an American preacher who heard him a lot and who was responsible for publishing some of his sermons. Commenting upon his style of preaching, he said, "A noble negligence ran through his style". What does he mean? He means that Whitefield did not sit down and write wonderful literary masterpieces of sermons, with every sentence perfectly balanced, and always finished, and polished and so on. No, he did not do that. He had not got the time to write sermons. He was an extemporary preacher, and there was what this man calls 'a noble negligence' in his preaching. He broke the rules of grammar now and again, he did not remember to finish his sentences always, but to those who know anything about preaching that is nothing. 'Noble negligence!' - oh that we had a little more of it, and a little less of the polished essays that pass for sermons in this our degenerate age! But the thing that characterized the preaching was the zeal, the fire, the passion, the flame. He was a most convicting and alarming preacher................."

From The Puritans by Martyn Lloyd-Jones (pg 121, 122)

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