As a senior pastor and main preaching elder it is my responsibility to hear a fresh word from God on a regular basis. I do not get the luxury of ripping off sermons from others…preaching them word for word. I will at times receive inspiration from hearing other sermons or get the idea for an illustration online. However, to blatantly plagiarize another man of God’s sermon is a sin. God gave that sermon to that man for that body of Believers…and God will give me a unique message for Compass Point…if I will take the time to hear Him.
With open resources, podcasts and online sermon sites so readily available it has become too easy for the preachers of God’s Word to coast. We no longer have to hear from God…pour over the Bible…and pray through sermon prep. Now we can just click a few buttons on our computers…and become a Rick Warren or Mark Driscoll copy band. We no longer have to wrestle through what God wants to teach us…or what He wants us to teach our congregations. No…we now have the easy luxury of preaching the sermon God meant for Saddleback or Mars Hill to our people. And that’s how God works…He never does a new thing…He only wants to repeat what is “successful” some place else. If you detect a note of sarcasm…you should…I’m laying it on pretty thick.
Pastors…preachers…God has a unique message that He wants to give you and your church. It is a message that is intended for no other. You are going to have to clear your schedule to hear it. You are going to have to cut out the interruptions and noise of life to hear it. You are going to have to spend a large amount of time in prayer and the Bible to hear it. You are going to have to struggle and work hard to hear it. But your church…and your calling…and His kingdom…is worth the effort.