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Don’t Undermine God’s Word

4. He adds to the Word his own thoughts which may end up changing the plain meaning of the text.

Scripture for him becomes an instrument to dress up his sermons, not an authoritative word from on High.

Billy Graham set the standard for his generation by his repeated use of “Scripture says … !”

5. He spends more time preaching his ideas than opening the text.

We are not against creativity, and all in favor of looking at biblical stories in fresh ways. 

However, these impulses must be restrained and made to honor God’s inspired and revealed Word most of all.

6. He skips the great themes of Scripture in order to preach the odd exotic and minor texts.

The “great themes” of Scripture—those taught and illustrated from one end of the Bible to the other—include (but are not limited to) the Trinity, the sovereignty of God, the inspiration of Scripture, the deity of Jesus Christ, prayer, grace, faith and love.

However, some pastors feel attracted more to the unusual text that allows them to plow new ground. 

If the pastor’s motive was to provide his people something fresh and unusual, we can understand the sentiment, but it should be done sparingly.

7. He reads the Scripture poorly in the service, stumbling over words.

His lack of preparation speaks volumes about his low regard for the Word.

8. He keeps insisting that “the original Greek/Hebrew” means something else than what the Bible in the hands of his members plainly states. 

As a result, members leave church believing that the translation they hold in their hands is not trustworthy. They are thus discouraged from picking up the Bible and reading it during the week.