Andy Stanley: Why I Stopped Saying ‘The Bible Says’ When I Preach

Andy Stanley

Andy Stanley is the senior pastor of North Point Community Church, Buckhead Church, and Browns Bridge Community Church. Andy received a bachelor’s degree of journalism from Georgia State University and later earned a masters degree from Dallas Theological Seminary. He lives in Alpharetta, Georgia with his wife, Sandra, and his three children: Andrew, Garrett, and Allison.

Key Questions for Andy Stanley:

– Can you explain why you’ve stopped saying certain phrases like “The Bible says” when you preach?
– How has this change in language affected those who listen to your sermons?
– Instead of placing the focus on Scripture’s inerrancy, what should we focus on when evangelizing?

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Key Quotes from Andy Stanley:

“I stopped using specific language. I quit saying: The Bible says, the Bible teaches, the Word of God says, the Word of God teaches…this was not a change in belief or theology for me. This was simply a change in approach to talking about the Bible.”

“Once upon a time, the only way to know what was in the Bible was to pick one up and read it. Those days are long gone, and because of the internet, and because of the misinformation age…people can find out what else is in the Bible without owning a Bible, picking up a Bible, reading a Bible, or even having access to a Bible.”

“I’ve found many people who have left church are willing to take a step and follow before they believe. Which of course, most of Jesus’s first century followers followed before they believed.”

“For the first 350 years of Christianity, no preacher or teacher said ‘the Bible says’, ‘the Bible says’, ‘the Bible says’. There was no such thing as the Bible. Obviously there was Scripture…but they did not, especially in the first century, build the Christian faith on the back of a text…Nobody could read, nobody owned one. What drove the first century Christians was an event.”

“The time has come for us to step back onto a more sure footing, and I think a firmer foundation, and to build our case for our congregations and for this generation [Millennials] on the event of the Resurrection, and not the authenticity or the infallibility of a text. And it’s not because I don’t think the Scripture’s infallible…”

“The Bible did not create Christianity. Christians created the Bible….What created Christianity was the first Easter morning…”

“In the culture and in the marketplace and in the public square, we have to shift the focus from the Bible to the Resurrection. Because the Resurrection is completely defensible now just as it was in the first century.”

“I think [some people] put [the Bible] in the place of Jesus.”

“When people hear the story [of the Resurrection], they lean in because it’s undeniable and it’s extraordinary.”

“If you will organize around reaching the next generation and not keeping the current one, if you will organize around, budget around, build around, preach, teach, sing around reaching the next generation instead of keeping the current one, your church will be better…”

“All the New Testament imperatives that we find after the gospels are simply applications of Jesus’s new covenant command to love as I have loved you. The Apostle Paul wasn’t coming up with new rules and new laws.”

“If ministry is hard, you are doing it correctly.”

Links Mentioned by Andy Stanley in the Show:

Irresistible: Reclaiming the New that Jesus Unleashed for the World  by Andy Stanley

Dr. Norman Geisler

Andy’s Interview in Outreach Magazine

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Jason Daye
As Director of Ministry Development for Outreach, Inc., Jason dedicates his time to encouraging and equipping churches, denominations and ministry organizations to develop their Kingdom effectiveness by creating a culture that is both incarnational and invitational. Jason lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado, with his beautiful wife and six children, where he enjoys hiking with his family, fighting rainbow trout, summiting 14ers and swapping stories with good friends. Connect with him on Twitter @jasondaye

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