How hard preaching changed my life.
Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. Isaiah 58:1
I did not grow up an Independent Fundamental Baptist. In my earlier years, I went to watered-down and lame liberal churches that taught zero doctrine and offered motivational speeches about love every Sunday morning. It did nothing for me, but it was all I knew.
After getting saved and listening to Pastor Steven Anderson’s preaching, I decided to get plugged into the best church in my area. I wanted to find a pastor who wouldn’t hold back and went beyond buzzwords and catchphrases. I ended up finding an “Old IFB” church in Jacksonville, Florida with good doctrine and the rest is history.
Today, I attend Stedfast Baptist Church led by Pastor Jonathan Shelley.
Let me start out by saying: I’m far from perfect. I struggle, like everyone else does, with sin. Every day is a battle between the flesh and the spirit and I strive to subdue the old man as much as possible.
With that said: I would be much worse off without my church and pastor.
The essence of hard preaching is that it’s corrective. It helps you realize where you are failing and how to rectify those shortcomings. Hard preaching will exhort you to change bad habits, get the sin out of your life and be a more disciplined Christian. It isn’t just about listening to a preacher get up and rip on the sodomites, telling it like it is. That’s great! But there’s a practical component to hard preaching that cannot be understated.
For me: I’ve learned how to be a better husband, a better steward of my time, a better soul winner and a harder worker among other things.
When you hear the man of God preaching with passion against laziness, it lights a fire under you to be a better employee.
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing. Proverbs 20:4
When husbands are exhorted to love their wives, it encourages you to maintain a healthy relationship with your spouse.
Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; Ephesians 5:25
When the preacher emphasizes the importance of soul winning , it serves as a pertinent reminder that God has given us the ministry of reconciliation and we need to reach the lost in our neighborhoods with the gospel of Christ.
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. Mark 16:15
When the man of God rips on the anti-Christian agenda of Hollywood and the media, it motivates you to stay separated from worldliness.
Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. James 4:4
When you come to church and hear a sermon on the deceitfulness of riches, it keeps you from being covetous and putting money first.
He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful. Matthew 13:22
When you hear a sermon on great faith, it gives you the courage to step out in faith yourself, trust in God to provide the essentials and lead a one-income family with as many children as God gives you – despite the discouragement of naysayer family/friends.
And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets:
Who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions. Hebrews 11:32-33
In short, hard preaching simply helps you succeed in the Christian life and be BETTER.
Churches with sissy pastors in skinny jeans preaching about innocuous, lovey, dovey platitudes have failed America. They’re accomplishing nothing and sitting idly by as the country plunges into more filth and debauchery.
My hope is more qualified men will get involved in the ministry and start more churches that preach the entire Bible, in season and out of season. As the New IFB continues to grow, I want even more hard preaching to circulate YouTube and other social media outlets.
There are great multitudes out there who need it!
Find a great church in your area here!