Monday, January 12, 2009
There once was a pastor who preached every sunday for 90, 105, 115 minutes -- as long as he could,and through the Bible as specifically and sincerely as he could. His doctrine was serious and thorough, and he always tied his sermons back to Christ. For the 3-dozen people who attended his church. They were glad for their pastor, but wished more people would listen to him.
Down the road was another pastor, and he preached 20-minute sermons every week -- no matter what. If he had to split an important theological point right down the middle, he did. And he did it because his sanctuary was overflowing with people. To get them all in to worship on Sunday, he had to have 3 services, and in order to have 3 on Sunday morning he had to start at 7:15 AM, 8:45 AM and 10:15 -- 60 minutes of worship, and 30 minutes between services to turn over the parking lot.
The second pastor knew the first was frustrated with him and his church, so he invited the longer-winded fellow to lunch, and at lunch he invited him to preach the three services at the larger church because (1) he bore the man no ill-will, and (2) he wanted him to see that fruitful ministry was possible in their city. The only stipulation was that the first pastor had to preach a 20-minute sermon three times that Sunday.
The first pastor was stunned, and initially he accepted because he thought this was a great opportunity to preach God's word to the lost. But after two weeks, he called the second pastor back and sadly declined -- because he had no idea how to preach for only 20 minutes.
Here's your chance at 20 minutes. Go for it.