A challenge to follow Jesus' example. In Luke 4v16-32 we see Jesus preaching Jesus from the Old Testament... and we see some hardened... and some softened. Some filled with wrath, some with awe for Jesus. Jesus interprets scripture and he interprets the people... and he brings God's word to them.
Cotton Mather, puritan preacher...
"the great design and intention of the office of Christian preacher is to restore the throne and dominion of God in the souls of men"...which he supports from Romans 10v15-15: how beautiful are the feet of those who preach good news? What good news? Romans quotes Isaiah 52v7:
"YOUR GOD REIGNS"...the point of studying the Bible? The point of preaching the Bible? Answer: The re-enthronement of Jesus in the hearts of God's people.
We were exhorted to consider the culture, where nothing is new and people still have contempt for Biblical ministry... people downgrade preachinga nd their expectations of it... the calling to preach is downgraded... and the preacher is downgraded.
But we must preach the word. And that doesn't mean cool observation about God's word but requires passionate hearers of God's word... letting the Bible speak not speaking about the Bible. The Church is not a Christian University, it is a field hospital... not a training seminar. Are our people being fed? And with this serious task in view we were challenge as to whether our diary reflects the high priorities of preaching and prayer for Christian leaders?
I will also write up notes from John Piper's two talks, firstly on risk is right and second on sustaining grace. Both were outstanding expository exultation... preaching the word... enthroning Christ in our hearts again.