The implication was back in verse 14 was that if Jesus was not resurrected then preaching of Christ was in vain. The thunderous answer to this is that he has, in fact, been raised. THEREFORE, your preaching is not in vain!
In so far as you are preaching Christ, his life, death, burial and resurrection for us and our salvation, then your preaching is not in vain. It matters. It makes a difference. This is what you must do when you are knee deep in the sewer water of sin and the pain of hard times. You must preach Christ. And keep preaching Christ.
Just a couple more helps to help you in your encouragement in ministry as you preach Christ:
1. Open your eyes.
Look around; I am almost certain that God has given you some people that are hearing the Word preached and following Christ with heart-felt devotion. We don’t want to be like Naomi who stood amid a barley harvest and saw no grace, only affliction and bitterness (Ruth 1).
Pretty simple. Pretty hard. Put in the hard time to pray for yourself and your people. Don’t stop praying for them when it’s good or bad. Keep at it. Remember Samuel who felt he would be sinning against God by not praying for his people? (1 Sam. 12:23)
I like to run. And one of my favorite things to do is to smell when I run. There are so many things to smell in different seasons and in different places. Pastors need to sniff up the glorious scent of the gospel of grace. In one sense, the world could be crashing down around you, but if your nostrils are full of the scent of the gospel, then you can smile. So delight.
Pastors, remember as you prepare for and deliver your sermon this Sunday, your preaching is not in vain. Get after it, brothers.