mgpcpastor's blog

The Ultimate Proof That There Is No Eloquent, Rhetorically Savvy Pathway To God.

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If you’re listening to a preacher tomorrow, hopefully they’re not trying to lift you up to heaven with their words.
(Or worse by the music)
Their language should point you instead to the fact that God comes down to us.

From William Willimon.

The cross is a reminder that there is no eloquent, rhetorically savvy way by which we can ascend to God. All of our attempts to climb up to God are our pitiful efforts at self-salvation. God descends to our level by climbing on a cross, opening up his arms, and dying for us, because of us, with us. Paul’s thoughts on the foolishness of preaching that avoids “lofty words of wisdom” suggests that Christian rhetoric tends to be simple, restrained, and direct – much like the parables of Jesus. The Puritans developed what they called the “plain style” of preaching out of a conviction that Christian speech ought not to embellish, ought not to mislead hearers into thinking they there was some way for a sermon to work in the hearts and minds of the hearers apart from the gift of the Holy Spirit that makes sermons work.
Proclamation and Theology By William H. Willimon, pg 70.

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