Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Every Lutheran Sermon Is an Evangelism Sermon

This is a quote from a blog post by Rev. Dr. Norbert C. Oesch titled “Fishing or Pleasure Boating.” The quote comes from the PLI [Pastoral Leadership Institute] Leadership Blog. This particular post was directed to pastors who don’t spend enough of their time fishing for men:
Fishing, actually getting the line in the water, is not a take it or leave it proposition in the Lord’s Kingdom. It is what we are to do. Just like farmers are to farm and pilots are to fly, Christians are to fish. “Come, follow me; I will make you fishers of men.”

Try out an exercise. Look over your calendar for the past two months. Figure out just how many hours you actually had your line in the water (you can count preaching evangelism sermons and teaching people how to fish).
I thought all sermons were evangelism sermons, at least all sermons that actually contain Law and Gospel. “And how are they to hear without someone preaching?” The primary place for evangelism is the pulpit. It is here that God sends his designated representatives to preach His Word, and it is His Word that has the power to raise souls from the depths of sin to the mercy seat of God. No other explanation will do.


Rev. Steven L. Anderson said...

My own LCMS has been beating the laymen over the head for the last fifty years about the obligation of every single member to tell every single person they meet about Jesus. I have always told my people to invite people to church, and I will preach the Gospel every Sunday, and will never *from the pulpit* tell them to bring people to church, which would make any visitor feel like he was at an Amway meeting.

Scott Diekmann said...

Thanks for your comment Pastor Anderson. Hopefully the emphases are shifting in the LCMS. We're no longer Ablaze! on every page of every publication as we once were. I view that as a good sign.