We've Heard That Sermon Before, and That's Okay

We've Heard That Sermon Before, and That's Okay

I've listened to about 1,000 sermons in my lifetime. Many really good. Many not so much.

Many were enlightening, revealing a truer, more beautiful picture of Christ. Many not so much.

The problem with going to church every week (and for much of my life, twice or three times a week) is that I've heard it all before. Almost all of the sermons I hear today are sermons I've heard many times over.

And you know what? That's okay.

I've heard it said, "People need to be reminded more often than they need to be instructed." Hearing something preached a second or third time is a good thing. It probably didn't take the first time. I'm a little stubborn.

The opposite can actually cause more problems.

Pastors know their audience is hearing them week after week, and they want something new. They want to leave with some new insight, or feeling of closeness to God.

They want their "mind blown."

But if you're coming back around to that oft-preached passage, don't let the temptation to preach something "new" surpass your calling to teach what the passage actually says.

The passage can never mean what the author never intended. So if you preached what the passage meant last time, it can't mean something else this time.

If you've found some "new" and "undiscovered" meaning from the text, we can probably just assume it's wrong. Christians have been reading the same Bible for a couple thousand years. You're not special enough to have discovered something new. I promise.

So preach what it says — nothing more, nothing less. Get creative with the presentation, and maybe the application, not with the passage.

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