Pretty much everything you preach on has at least one challenge to it, not even just from culture but also from within Christian theology.
When you are preaching the Gospel guess what pushes back against Jesus’ principles? The world does. It is not enough to just be able to articulate your argument well you have to be able to articulate why culture is wrong as well.
When you are preaching sticky theological points it is not enough to just know what you believe you have to be able to know the opposing arguments as well.
Why? Because you will be challenged on it.
Look, what we say in the pulpit is not the be all end all for the audience. I hope you would want them to take what you said and make sure it lines up with Biblical principal and then wrestle with those truths.
Again there is two major angles push back will come from: Culture and Theology
Know What The World Says
If you preach on the sanctity of marriage, the importance of a sober mind, the need to trust God or any principle from the Bible culture does not agree with you. Since this is the case you need to be an observer of culture. Culture at the world level, the national level, the regional level, the right around you level. What is culture telling people about these things?
Are you able to not only articulate what the Bible teaches but also what culture teaches and why God is right? That should be the goal
Know What Other Theology Says
There are “churches” that preach that Jesus was not human or that he was not God. Some teach the Resurrection never happened. Some teach God did not create the world. It is great to be able to tell everyone what you believe, what the Bible says, and why you believe it. But, that alone is not going to convince all people.
Know what negotiable and what is non-negotiable in your theological thinking and be able to clearly state why, not just from your side but the other side as well.
Why is this so important?
Today’s culture does not just “accept that this is the way” because of that preaching must adapt. We have to be ready to let people explore, wrestle, and doubt the principles we are teaching.
I know guys who furthered their formal education to know better what they believed sure, but also to know the opposing arguments better. You do not have to go back to seminary or get another degree or audit classes to do this. Instead read a little more and observe culture by being in it and interacting with people.
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