Thursday, August 6, 2009

Lloyd-Jones on theological preaching

An excerpt from Preaching and Preachers by Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones


I would lay down a general proposition that preaching must always be theological, always based on a theological foundation. We should be particularly careful when we preach on isolated texts and deal with each one separately. The reason for that, of course, is that we may well find ourselves becoming guilty of contradictions. We deliver a message on the basis of one text, but because it’s not related to others, and to the whole truth, when we come to deal with another text we may say something that contradicts what we have said in the first sermon. The way to avoid that, and to maintain and preserve the interrelationship between these types of preaching, is to be always theological. There is no type of preaching that should be non-theological.

A type of preaching that is sometimes, indeed frequently today, regarded as non-theological is evangelistic preaching………….You ‘bring people to Christ’ as they put it; and then you teach them the truth….That, to me, is quite wrong, and indeed monstrous. I would be prepared to argue that in many ways evangelistic preaching should be more, rather than less theological, than any other, and for this good reason. Why is it that you call people to repent? Why do you call them to believe the gospel? You cannot deal properly with repentance without dealing with the doctrine of man, the doctrine of the Fall, the doctrine of sin and the wrath of God against sin. Then when you call men to come to Christ and to give themselves to Him, how can you do so without knowing who He is, and on what grounds you invite them to come to Him, and so on. In other words it is all highly theological. Evangelism which is not theological is not evangelism at all in any true sense. It may be calling for a decision, it may be a calling on people to come to religion, or to live a better kind of life, or the offering of some psychological benefits; but it cannot by any definition be regarded as Christian evangelism, because there is no true reason for what you are doing apart from these great theological principles.

Amen and Amen!

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