What is one of the reasons why people don’t go to church? It is that the preaching is so lifeless. Even the idea conjured up by the word ‘sermon’ involves something tedious or mind-numbing.
So pastors have to get back to the simple source for spiritual life in their churches, that is seeking the Spirit of Christ in their preaching. Calvin made the point clearly:
As long as the law is preached by the external voice of man, and not inscribed by the finger and Spirit of God on the heart, it is but a dead letter, and as it were a lifeless thing (1)
But then the same applies to the hearer. Are you seeking Christ, so that the Spirit can awaken life within you? More than that, the Spirit can create new life within you, causing you to be born ‘from above’.
It is the great untried opportunity of this age. Yet it’s only a sermon away.
(1) John Calvin , Commentaries on the Catholic Epistles (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 2010), 297.