Today's Expositor's Quote is from J.I. Packer:
The devil is malicious and mean, more so than any of us can imagine, and he marauds constantly with destructive intent. Though he is, as Luther said, God's devil, and is on a chain (a strong one, though admittedly a long one), he is tireless in opposing God, and sets himself to spoil and thwart all the redemptive work that God ever does in human lives. As one means to this end, he labors to ensure that preachers' messages will be either misstated or misheard, so that they will not have the liberating, invigorating, upbuilding effect that is proper to the preached word. Preaching is thus, as all real preachers soon discover, an endless battle for truth and power, a battle that has to be fought afresh each time by watchfulness and prayer. Preachers know themselves to be warriors in God's front line, drawing enemy fire; the experience is grueling, but it confirms to them the importance of their task as ambassadors for Christ and heralds of God, sowers of good seed, stewards of saving truth, shepherds of God's flock, and fathers guiding their spiritual families. . . . In the manner of frontline troops they frequently get scared by the opposition unleashed against them, but they do not panic, and their morale remains high. The challenge of beating back Satan by God's strength, like that of communicating effectively for Christ, is one to which they rise. . . . Preaching God's gospel and God's counsel from the Scriptures was, and is, and always will be, the most honorable and significant activity in the world.
J.I. Packer, "Why Preach?" Introduction to The Preacher and Preaching, edited by Samuel T. Logan (Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing, 1986), p. 27-29.
[How is the endless battle going for you? Is Satan succeeding in seeing that your messages are misstated or misheard? Are you panicking? Expect the attacks; seek out the prayers of your people and other ministers; be devoted to prayer yourself, with watchfulness and thankfulness for your great privilege and task. And may your preached word this week liberate, invigorate, and upbuild your people - Coty]
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