I remember WELS Missionary Richard Starr saying with a straight face that he studied the Bible and decided old methods for evangelism were not fast enough in Brazil. His idea was to give people video tapes to watch if they had any questions at their little post in Brazil. They could go in the next room and watch the tape.
A farmer from the area stood up and asked, "Tapes? They want to know about Christ and you give them tapes to watch?"
The important part--which Starr never mastered,--was learning the language. He was the head of the team spending Schwan's money - and yours - in Brazil, but he could not speak Portuguese. WELS quietly sent him home to Michigan..
Back to Luther
Luther's entire emphasis was upon the preaching office for teaching people about the grace of God.
As you doubtless recall from Luther's sermon after Easter, he also advocated individual evangelism.
The most important part about adult education in the Christian Church--the sermon--is hardly attempted today. How will people learn in detail the meaning of key passages of Scripture? They will not learn anything good from their little cell groups, which are based on literature from sects.
I was talking to a Baptist with a PhD about the Reformation candy I passed out. "For Halloween?" he asked. I said, "No, for Reformation on October 31st?"
"Reformation Day was the same as Halloween this year?"
"It is every year."
"Yes. I had the classes study the Reformation and answer questions for the candy."
I was more shocked by his response than football player with a 4.0 report card.
Are these the people you want teaching your members about the Bible, doctrine, the Reformation? Don't worry, they skip over the Reformation.
Preaching Is Hard Work, But Fulfilling and Unique
The only way to preach is to use a text and explain the meaning of it. Sometimes a theme can be picked to emphasize, but the best kind of preaching overall is expository.
Luther preached on themes from time to time, but the ones preserved in the Lenker series are mostly expository.
You do have a set, don't you? The old version was $40 for 8 handy volumes. The newer version includes the household postils, now a total of 7 larger volumes.
Those who despise and ignore Luther never study him and do not know how to start. They should. I told a Calvinist I read Luther all the time. He laughed. I said, "It would do you a world of good."
|The UOJ Stormtroopers, with all their gimmicks,|
are ready to declare victory.