Mike’s Musings ….
“They Being Dead Yet Speak”
Several months have passed since I last had time to work at converting cassette tapes to an mp3 format. A few weeks ago, a dear friend loaned me four recordings of the late brother Marshall Keeble. After some “retraining” to remember how to do the work, I was able to “multi-task” as the machine played the recordings and converted the sermons to a better format for republication.
It struck me during this process that the old, old story hasn’t changed! It shouldn’t … it’s God’s message and Jesus said the same words will judge us in the last day (John 12:48). These older preachers had varying “styles” of delivery, but the message was the same. Many of them had “unique titles” to their lessons (Keeble was famed for such), but the message was the same. Some were quite stoic in their approach, others very forceful, while still others were emphatic but calm and gentle in their voices. Still, the message was always the same: “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins.” (Acts 2:38)
Regardless of the topic, the text of discussion, or even the theme of a gospel meeting effort, the preaching always carried that same soul-saving message of Christ and Him crucified and His commandment, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; he that believeth not shall be damned.” (Mark 16:16) None of these men “apologized” for that statement of inspired direction! Instead, they proved over and over again this was the Lord’s commandment – not man’s and not an invitation – but the Lord’s commandment in order to receive remission of sins. They believed every soul had the right to hear that commandment taught and explained at least once: and since they never knew if those attending would ever return, they preached it in every sermon, every time they preached for everyone to hear! They also believed it needful to remind those who had obeyed the gospel of their necessity to teach the same soul-saving truth to everyone they would encounter!
The message hasn’t changed, folks! And while we muse of “needed subjects” from the pulpit, we Christians all (not just preachers!) must realize it is the gospel that saves (Romans 1:16) and not us! If the gospel isn’t preached, then souls aren’t taught the truth. And if they aren’t taught the truth, what are they being taught that can save them?