Don Carson: Why Preaching IS Required

August 12, 2008

“Granted that ‘preaching’ or ‘proclaiming’ in the Scriptures is not restricted to something done behind a wooden pulpit between 11:00 and 12:00 on Sunday mornings, it is nevertheless hard to avoid the strength of this emphasis on proclamation in the New Testament. The reason for the emphasis lies in the message itself. God has taken action, and the good news is announced, it is proclaimed. God is not negotiating; he is both announcing and confronting.

Done properly, preaching is simply the re-presentation of God’s gospel, God’s good news, by which men and women come to know him. Thus preaching mediates God himself. Many preachers, afraid of being thought arrogant, avoid talking about preaching. They prefer to think of what they do as ‘sharing.’ In some limited contexts, doubtless there is nothing wrong with ‘sharing.’ But something important is lost if we never speak or think of preaching and proclamation. That is our job, our calling.

It is not arrogant to re-present as forcefully as we can God’s gospel; it is simply faithful stewardship. Further, if we focus on the powerful proclamation of the gospel, we shall be less likely to be seduced by siren calls to soften the sheer non-negotiability inherent in preaching.”

(Don Carson, The Cross and Christian Ministry, p 37)



  1. […] (HT: Unashamed Workman) […]

  2. Carson’s comments are excellent encouragement to me as a prof of pastoral studies. This is what our pastors and future pastors need to hear and embrace

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