Guiding Verse

Several years ago I ran across a verse of scripture that has guided my preaching and teaching. It is a simple statement that the Apostle Paul makes to the elders from the Church int he city of Ephesus about his teaching while he was with them for three years.

Acts 20:20 (NIV) “You know that I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house.”

What caught me in this verse is that Paul states that his preaching was designed to be “helpful.” His goal was not necessarily designed to be witty, insightful, enjoyable or deep. When he taught the word of God it was with the aim of being helpful.

So I have some questions I ask of everything I preach or teach:

1. Does this HELP people to know God better?
2. Does this HELP people to know God’s word better?
3. Does this HELP people to live out their faith?
4. Does this HELP people love each other more?
5. Does this HELP people to grow in Christ in any way?

I firmly believe that every time God’s word is proclaimed we need to have a practical element to it. We are not just presenting people with the Bible, but helping them in their relationship with God and with one another.

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