"Not my words..."

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by webdog, Oct 6, 2007.

  1. webdog

    webdog
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    This is for the pastors (obviously since it's in the pastoral forum :))

    Just about each sermon I hear (regardless where I'm at) starts off with a prayer to the affect of...
    "Lord, let the words that come out of my mouth be from you, and not mine".

    Since many pastors' "work week" begins on Tuesday, and research and preparation goes into the sermon, with notes being used, should this be said during the prayer? Many times I will hear the pastor say something regarding a personal experience, or theologically speaking, something that may not be based on Scripture, but eisegetical interpretation. Is this really "God's words" since the pastor prayed that it would be?

    Wouldn't "Lord, use this message to speak to those present" be more of an accurate statement instead of "not my words, but yours"? It sounds like the pastor is a prophet or something.
     
    #1 webdog, Oct 6, 2007
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  2. exscentric

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    Amen.

    I might add however years ago in a SBC using SBC Sunday school material it was taught that the old testament prophet and the pastor are the same and both spoke the very words of God when they spoke. The material did not take that strong a stance as I remember but the pastor/teacher wouldn't have it any other way even when a couple of us suggested otherwise :tonofbricks:
     
  3. Brother Bob

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    I guess the saying would fit someone like me more because I have no prepared sermon. I may have intent to preach on a subject in my mind but may when I come to the stand end up preaching an entirely different subject. I rely entirely on the Lord to revelate my mind so as to preach a message.
    I do prepare by always studing though, but never write nothing down.
    Believe you me, that prayer you listed is really coming from my heart, even if I don't say the words.

    BBob,
     
  4. webdog

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    I realize the intentions that your words (the message) be from God...but wouldn't that public prayer hint at your words being authorized and inspired by God as they were when prophets were sent? Since we are humans, too, we will say things that are not true sometimes due to a slip of the tongue, or a flawed understanding of a topic. Wouldn't that make God look like He wanted the mistake said, or the flawed view shared with everyone as "His words"?
    I understand God uses everything for His glory, including our imperfections, but it seems to me when I hear "let these words be Yours and not mine", there is almost a modern day prophet feel to it.
     
  5. Brother Bob

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    I don't want to sound as if I am anything, but when God lifts me up to preach, I do believe it is He that preaches through me. Mind you, that I am not always in the Spirit when I am up in the stand, but when my mind is revelated from scripture to scripture to bring a message of understand to God's word, I indeed do think it come from God and not me. It is one of my strongest beliefs.

    1Corth; 2:


    1: And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.
    2: For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
    3: And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.
    4: And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:
     
  6. webdog

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    The above bolded I believe and agree with. I believe the message is put there by God, but the problem I have is the implied infallibility of the words presented to the congregation due to the public prayer. To me it almost sounds like God is the ventriloquist with the pastor sitting on His knee...that the words that flow from the pastor are God inspired in the same way we receive Scripture instead of the pastor's gift being used by God to speak to people. Maybe it's just semantics on my part, I don't know. Maybe we will get other opinions on this from, as Heavenly Pilgrim calls it..."the list" :)
     
  7. Brother Bob

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    Well, I could take it the "other" way and say that the prepared sermon's are of man's wisdom.

    When I preach Web, it is like it is not me. I wonder for days about the message I preached on Sunday. I am amazed at the "power of God" and how He takes care of His preachers. What was the scripture He said when brought before the council, think not what you shall say, for I will give it to you in the self same hour. I may have not quoted it word for word, but got the kernel of it.

    BBob,
     
  8. webdog

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    If the pastor is called by God to preach, and his gifts match that of the reuirements set forth in Scripture of that an elder, preparing a sermon would not be man's wisdom, IMO, but part of what is required of him. Some are called to be gifted teachers, and I believe God uses each of us and our gift mix to further His work. God "speaks" through us without our actual words being His words.
     
  9. TCGreek

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    Webdog,

    1. Sometimes, when I've preached a sermon, I knew it wasn't one of my better ones, but someone would come up to me and say thank you and let me know how it has blessed their life.

    2. I believe when the Word is faithfully preached the Spirit takes the Word and applies it to the heart of the receptive believer, whether the preacher was on target or not that Sunday.

    3. So, I can understand when pastors pray for God to speak through them. I understand what they mean, for they aren't seeking "special revelation," only to speak forth the Word of God so others may be blessed.
     
    #9 TCGreek, Oct 7, 2007
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  10. webdog

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    Thanks, TC. That's the way I see it, also. My problem is with the phrase "let my words be your words" or "not my words, but yours". I think it can give the wrong impression, even to believers, that pastors are even more than what they are called to be.
     
    #10 webdog, Oct 7, 2007
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  11. TCGreek

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    1. Yeah, I agree with you--pastors much choose the proper words, but sometimes it can be rather difficult.

    2. Usually, I try not to say too much in my introduction; I just like to get the Word. I find when I try to say too much, I usually mess up. :laugh:
     
  12. Brother Bob

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    This is what I believe also, it is not a "new" revelation, but God revelating my mind to bring forth the "right" message. He knows what the congregation stands in need of far better than I.

    Also Web, I said I "could" go that way but didn't choose to about preparing a sermon. I do know that when I am in the stand, it is much different than I am at home for the most part. I in no way want to say anything negative about a preacher preparing his sermon. They do it their way and I do it mine with the help of the Lord. There are times even in my car driving that I feel, God has revelated something to me. Again, not a "new" revelation, but give me an understanding of what is already written. It is not always easy being a Pastor. You have to keep your members and congregation interested, or you are just "blowing in the wind".


    This is exactly what I been trying to say, but maybe not too plain and with understanding. I am leaving now for church where I am called in a memorial meeting. I have no idea what I will be preaching on today, but trust that the Lord will deliver me and bring to my mind a message for the congregation. I take no honor myself, for it all belongs to Him. I thank you this morning my Lord, for always being there for me, most of all, I thank you for that eternal home where I can live forevermore, with all my brothers and sisters and most of all, with You.

    BBob,
     
    #12 Brother Bob, Oct 7, 2007
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  13. webdog

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    I really respect your love of the Lord and the way you care for your congregation. I don't think there is a right way or wrong way to present the message...as long as it's Truth. :)
    We are probably saying the same thing using diferent terminology.
     
  14. TomVols

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    Prepared sermon or not, notes or not, the sermon is not the Word of God. The Bible is the word of God. The sermon must faithfully proclaim the Word to be anything close to divinely inspired/led. The prayer should not be focused on the preacher. The prayer should be focused on the one being proclaimed - Christ.
     
  15. Brother Bob

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    Speak for yourself if you do not need the Lord when you preach. I for one, could not do it without the Lord, for I give Him all Glory and Honor. I take none for myself, for without Him, I am nothing. I sure would hate to come to the stand without Him.

    Also, the Bible is the written word of God. Jesus according to the scripture is the word. (The word was made flesh)

    If it was the "Word", how come it has been translated in so many different ways?

    Eph 6:
    [18] Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
    [19] And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,


    Rom.10
    1. [8] But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
    2. [14] How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
    3. [15] And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
    BBob,
     
    #15 Brother Bob, Oct 8, 2007
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  16. TCGreek

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    Well put BBob!
     
  17. TomVols

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    Any idiot that would say that isn't worthy of the pulpit. Surely you know I didn't say that.

    As an aside...I was up in your neck of the woods this weekend.
     
  18. swaimj

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    In light of these verses in I Peter 4:
    I do not believe that this prayer
    is improper. It seems to me that the prayer expresses a desire on the part of the speaker to fulfill his giftedness of which Peter speaks. I like it.
     
  19. Brother Bob

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    Thank you,
     
    #19 Brother Bob, Oct 8, 2007
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  20. Brother Bob

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    I not only like it, I use it....:)
     

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