As you are probably aware, I sometimes write a short piece intended for those with a speaking ministry. The way God wired me, I like to help others become better in their callings. If you’re a preacher too, then this is just right for you.
I’ve elaborated upon what it takes to P-R-E-A-C-H well, for preachers’ eyes only. Six words are formed from these letters, with additional phrasing to make sense of it all.
You need a great PASSION for the glory of God. It’s His glory we should seek after and not our own. Preacher, we are not in this for self-glory. The Lord does not take kindly those who steal His glory for their own. The wisdom of Agur says, “If you have been foolish in exalting yourself, Or if you have devised evil, put your hand on your mouth” (Proverbs 30:32). Seek first the Kingdom of God and passionately lift up the name of Jesus.
The RIGHT interpretation and application of God’s Word for your preaching is needed. The best practice is for to pray for understanding and let the Spirit of truth help you rightly understand and apply the Word of truth. Also, it’s okay to review some commentaries and consult the published works of other preachers. None of us is as smart as all of us, so it’s okay to get some help. Don’t allow your pride to keep you from making the right application.
An EXPERIENCE of the power of God’s Word for yourself is essential. That Bible you’re preaching from is not just some old history book replete with great narratives. It’s alive! And you must have experienced its power to communicate it accordingly. It’s one thing to have gotten into the text and understand its application. It’s another experience altogether for you to have the text get into you. “For the word of God is living and powerful…” (Hebrews 4:12). Your preaching is not what it could be if you don’t have regular experiences with the Word of God.
An APPREHENSION of the Gospel is a must for any preacher. This is about you having a pure understanding of God’s plan of salvation. You can’t fully explain what it means to be a partaker of salvation without having fully apprehended it for yourself. More than having experienced the New Birth, this is about you having a personal grasp of the who, what, when, where, why, and how of salvation.
Without CONSIDERATION of your audience, you’ll find it difficult to preach well. Learn about your target audience, your congregation, or group. Consider the spiritual needs of those you’ve been given the charge to feed and equip. Such preaching will strengthen them for greater effectiveness.
A HEART for all people is a necessity. In today’s small world with our global social media reach, you would do well to consider the world as your parish. John Wesley was well ahead of his time in thought when he said “I look upon all the world as my parish; thus far I mean, that in whatever part of it I am, I judge it meet, right, and my bounden duty to declare unto all that are willing to hear, the glad tidings of salvation” (Journal, June 11, 1739). A heart for all people means that because you love the Lord with all your heart, you also love every person for which God gave His only begotten Son.
Let me summarize these in acrostical form.
P – passion for the glory of God
R – right application of God’s Word
E – experience the power of God’s Word
A – apprehension of the Gospel
C – consideration of your audience
H – heart for all people
At times I have failed in one or two of these. But when by the grace of God I get them all together, preaching is a worshipful time of giving God my utmost for His highest.
What if you read this and you’re not a preacher? Well, now you know how to pray for your favorite preachers and pastors.
Preacher, consider this a prayer guide for you to pray over your life and ministry.
PREACH well my friend, preach well.