This concept is so much more different than giving the Gospel every week, yet it is so closely intertwined I’m ashamed to admit that, at worst, I have missed it entirely for much of my preaching career or, at best, not come close enough and consistently enough at preaching this way to my students.
I am a big advocate for giving the Gospel every week in our large group Student Ministry gathering. From one Sunday to the next we have visitors to our ministry and if I am only guaranteed that one shot to make sure they hear the Gospel I am going to, “carpe diem!” Several years ago I was challenged to give the Gospel every week and when I finally relented 6 out of the 30 teens in the room, all of whom I was convinced were believers, put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ for the first time. For personal and practical reasons I give the Gospel weekly and would challenge those of you who might not to reconsider.
But like I said, giving the Gospel is different than this idea of preaching the Gospel.
Personally, I would love to continually improve my preaching and teaching to my teenagers. I can see how far God has brought me in this journey but I get very excited to think of how much more He will accomplish through me if I could get to a place where I preach the Gospel consistently. I have heard that phrase batted around by several preaching friends and have agreed in concept with it, but it has been something that has been hard to put my finger on and figure out how to do this for myself. As I was discussing this with a mentor of mine he passed on a podcast by Tim Keller. At the 2006 Resurgence conference he gave a talk entitled, “Preaching the Gospel.” I listened to this podcast and my mind was blown. I’m still processing the power of what he communicated and plan on listening to it several more times as I try to fold this principle into the way that I preach to teenagers.
I highly encourage you to take the 40 minutes out of your day and consume this talk! Here is the embedded video:
I get so excited to think of what the impact on Student Ministry and teenagers would be if we would teach desiring to accomplish both of these principles every week: preaching the Gospel and giving the Gospel!
How often do you give the Gospel in your Student Ministry’s large group setting? If you have found a groove in either preaching or giving the Gospel weekly, what would you encourage those of us who are just starting down this path to begin with?