What would you do, if you the restaurant you wanted to go to bought their meals from another restaurant down the road?
Or what would you do if the doctor you were seeing, took all your files to another doctor to find out what was wrong with you?
I would simply go to the other restaurant and the other doctor.
So what about a pastor who is not getting his sermons from the Scriptures themselves? What about a pastor who is preaching from someone else’s books, sermons, or studies?
Now I understand using someone’s book because you want to do a book study. No pastor can be the expert in every field.
But that is not what I am talking about. I believe that preaching of the Word is the central hub of church life. It is God speaking by his Spirit through his word about his Son.
So a pastor who is not seeking to understand what God has spoken in his word, cannot tell first hand what God says to his people today. I think this is a shame for two reasons:
He doesn’t know God
If he is not studying the Scriptures, then he doesn’t know God. If he is studying the Scriptures, then why is he preaching someone else’s sermons as though they are his own?
Jesus said that this is eternal life, “That they might know you, the only true God.”(John 17:3)
Christ Jesus wants us to know him, to know his Father. And a pastor is first and foremost a man of the study. He ought to be studying to know who God is. Yes he should be a reader, but his first reading should be of the Scriptures.
And if he is going to preach someone else’s book, then does he even know God at all?
He doesn’t know what God is really saying.
God speaks through his word. His word is alive and active and sharper than any two edged sword. God speaks in his word, and a pastor who does not read or study the scriptures themselves is not hearing God himself. He does not know what God is saying.
If he is reading someone else’s book, surely he will understand what that author thinks God says. But he will not know for himself what God says.
He cannot shepherd God’s people.
A pastor who is using someone else’s book or sermon to preach his own sermons, he is like a restaurant buying meals from another restaurant.
So this pastor is not shepherding the people before him, instead he is importing shepherds for God’s people who might not even believe like the pastor himself.
If you hear a pastor preaching a sermon from someone else, challenge him to give an account of his own study on the topic or passage. Seek pastors who are studying the Word for themselves. Don’t just sit there and take it. Hold these men accountable.