About Jesus    Steve Sweetman

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written 2003   

 Preaching the Good News      

Many years ago I heard the phrase, "a sample is better than a sermon".  Lately I have heard another phrase, "live the life of a Christian, and if you need to, use words".  

I know what these two phrases are getting at.  They are meant to tell us that we shouldn't be hypocrites.  We need to really live the life we profess.  Our actions must agree with our words.  This is correct.  We do need to live the life.

Yet once we live the life, we do need to say the words.  These two phrases seem to imply that saying the words are not all that important.

There are at least two problems with this.  We can live the life, but if we do not tell  people why we are living life like we do, they will think that we are just nice people.  They need to know the reason why we live like we do.

The second problem is that it is not really Scriptural.  I don't think Paul would minimize preaching to such an extent.  Paul said in 1 Cor. 1:21, "God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe".  He also said, "How can they hear without someone preaching to them". (Rom. 10:14)  Many other verses could be quoted, but Paul believed quite strongly that people were saved "through the preaching of the gospel".  

Yes, we need to live the life, but living the life without using words is not the Scriptural way of winning people to the Lord.  

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