This Is How Pastoral Writing Ought To Be

From the pen of J. Stafford Carson:

The task of the preacher and pastor is not only to explain and expound the great doctrines of the Christian faith , but to repeatedly put himself in the shoes of his listeners by asking the question, “So what?” A sensitive and effective preacher will imagine a recalcitrant listener sitting in the back pew during a worship service asking what the cash value is of the doctrine or truth that the preacher is expounding. If the preacher is to be faithful to his task, then he must give clear, practical application. It is the same for theologians. If theology is the application of the Word of God to all of life, then in any theological debate or discussion, we need to be able to flesh out the practical implications of what we profess to believe. The pastoral implications and applications of the doctrine of justification are numerous and crucial to the life and well-being of the church. Theologians know that doctrine of justification addresses questions which lie at the very heart of the Christian life, and that is why it is critical that such doctrines are not only stated clearly and accurately, but that their pastoral implications are also spelt out…In applying the truths about God’s holiness and human sinfulness, preachers must not side step the issue of human guilt before God. When guilt is pushed into the background, and the sense of guilt becomes extinct, then Murray says “the grand article of the gospel becomes correspondingly meaningless.” That “grand article” is, of course, the doctrine of justification by faith.*

I just received Justified In Christ yesterday and it is a blessing. Soli Deo Gloria!

For His Glory,
Fernando


* K. Scott Oliphint, Justified In Christ (Great Britain: Mentor, 2007), 175,182 

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