The term used in Scripture for “preaching, announcing, proclaiming good news or Gospel” was appropriated as a more technical term for the preaching of the Gospel. Within that technical use is the thought of representing the Message as well as preaching it.
As a follow up to how David was prepared to face giants, I was considering how both Saul and David had the same anointing to be king, yet David represented the kingdom of God while Saul represented the kingdom the people demanded – “so we can be like the other nations.”
I couldn’t help but ponder the idea that many who have the ability to preach the kingdom Gospel lack the character to represent the kingdom. Perhaps we have, in fact, adjusted the Gospel to what we can personally represent and defined the Gospel by our experience of the kingdom. So, while the Scriptures presume the preaching of the Gospel as a demonstration of God’s power, the power of the Cross, and miracles, signs, and wonders that manifest a “here and now” Presence of God functioning in the life and lifestyle of the one presenting the Message, those better prepared to preach than represent adjust the Message to their personal level of spiritual experience.
Preaching the Gospel is not just speaking, or being a mouthpiece for the Message. It is declaring the Message with spiritual authority and power that represents the heart, authority, and power of the One who sent the preacher. At no point do we see a picture of the preaching in the Bible that lacks a demonstration of the power and authority of the kingdom! This preaching with power is not located or limited to preaching so people will be saved: it continues to demonstrate authority and power for those who enter the kingdom. Preaching is not just for the lost! In fact, more preaching occurs within the kingdom than occurs through the kingdom because of the needed and necessary preparation of more preachers, sent with the same authority and power!
Preaching the Gospel isn’t about announcing the availability of authority, power, and salvation. Preaching releases salvation, authority, and power to those believing the Message so that their faith isn’t in the preaching but the power!
Paul says that some show a form of godliness but deny the power of godliness: “from such turn away.” So, none of us should be listening as spectators to preachers who cannot demonstrate the power and authority of the Gospel. We should be following leaders who represent as well as preach the Gospel in order to be discipled by their leadership.
Saul continually had a problem with people wandering away from his leadership. David attracted men and women willing to represent kingdom and flourished as a leader, general, worshipper, and king because he could represent the kingdom as well as describe and announce it. Saul’s leadership was based upon people accepting and believing in Saul. David represented the power and authority of God and people followed his leadership because they wanted to follow God; so David represented Someone so well that people followed David to learn how to follow God.
Preaching can be an attraction point to the preacher. However, preaching the Gospel in a way that dead ends with the messenger fails to properly fulfill the meaning of Bible preaching. Even preaching that attracts people because they sense that you properly understand the Message and preach it correctly fails to live up to the Bible’s definition of preaching. Following a leader because he has right doctrine will get you the opportunity to have right doctrine, but following a representative of kingdom Gospel will get you an opportunity to represent the King of the kingdom! One will create a closed ended group. The other will produce an expansion of the kingdom through an “ecclesia.”
In other words, preaching that expands the kingdom in numbers through the accumulation of believers isn’t the same as preaching that represents the kingdom and expands it through more representatives of the kingdom’s authority and power. One will produce a subculture. The other will build an ecclesia that hell cannot hold back!