We have been considering at the language of the Belgic Confession that identifies the preaching of the Gospel as a mark of the true church. If the reformers claim that a mark of the church the the preaching of the gospel then why does Paul exhort Timothy to preach the word? Does our confession need to be rewritten? Does Paul understand the preaching of the word to be the preaching of the Gospel?
Our confession does not merely say that we preach the word, but we preach the Gospel. Why not have a mature church that no longer needs the Gospel because they have advanced beyond it. Then we could have churches that are more geared to young Christians. What basis do we have to preach the gospel for all members of Christ’s church?
Jacob leaves home sent away as a covenantal fugitive to fend for himself at his uncle’s house. He is left alone in the deserve literally stripped of everything that he valued. Is all lost? What can Jacob’s vision in the midst of his existential crises teach us about preaching and the gospel message?
We might think that we know the Gospel and we know the Gospel well. So, why would we think that we need to continually hear the Gospel preached if we know the Gospel message? Is there a point in our Christians lives when we move beyond the Gospel message? What wisdom can be gleaned from church history that would shed some light on this issue of Gospel preaching?
How do we know a true church from a false church? The Belgic Confession gives us there marks of the church to distinguish a true church from a false church. One of these marks is the preaching of the gospel. Why is this gospel continually peached? What does Paul say that is so important about this preaching and working this out?
I believe that God has chosen His people before the foundations of the world. This is something that is rather risky for a preacher to believe because if God chooses His people then what is the point of preaching? I mean really, if God just does what God desires then why preach? Why care about the people who do not know the Lord? So, why do we preach if God chooses HIs people anyway?
One of the great struggles that people have with the Reformed faith is the notion that if God chooses His people then why preach or send missionaries? We can understand the force of this because if God has determined what has happened then why do anything? It would seem that we are merely helpless pawns in the game of life. Is this fair? Is this really what Reformed people believe about preaching?