|aithful preachers of salvation can be discerned from the unfaithful preachers of damnation and the bible gives us clues. In the battle of who of them preaches the truth, nobody does it better than the faithful preachers of salvation.False prophets will multiply in the end times, it was prophesied. They shall come in the name of Christ, deceiving many. Matt 24: 3-8 says –And as he sat upon the Mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.More than that, false prophets shall perform great wonders and many would be awed by their marvelous powers. Matt 24:24 earlier foretold that “there shall arise false christs, and false prophets, and able to show great signs and wonders, and deceive the very elect if possible.”
The prophecy further says that unfaithful preachers shall be using the same gospel, but pervert it. They shall be using Christ’s name and be mouthing Christian slogans, and mix their teachings with truth that some believers may be deceived. In fact Galatians 1: 6-7 gives proof that the faithful in Galatia were enticed at one time with corrupt teachings, and 2 Corinthians 11:4 shows that the Corinthians had to be warned. From St. Paul –
I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. (Gal 1: 6-7)
For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him. (II Cor 11:4)
However, God’s reaction to this corruption is that of wanting these unfaithful preachers to be accursed (Galatians 1:8). His word was not meant to be corrupted. As this is not a light matter to God, believers are warned that every spirit must not be readily believed in but tested if one is of God (1 John 4:1) –
But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. (Gal 1:8)
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. (1 John 4:1)
The Importance of a Preacher in our Lives
Professionals like lawyers, doctors, dentists, engineers, scientists study long in schools to prepare themselves for the work they would be engaged in after graduation. There are concepts and principles to internalize. There is much to know, understand, apply, synthesize, analyze, and evaluate. They hold in their hands the lives of others in so many ways that they must make sure to do what is right.
But if much is required of these professionals, much more is expected of a preacher who handles the Word of God. He should be precise to the dot and accurate to the core. A preacher‘s responsibility goes beyond caring for physical, social, and emotional lives. He is the medium for salvation of souls. Without the preacher, the Word of God cannot be preached whereby men can be saved. Rom. 10:14 says –
How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
It is through the preaching of God’s word that faith comes (Rom 10: 17) and the faithful preacher is tasked to preach the word (Luke 10: 10-11). Not all preachers can save, however. Only the faithful one used by the Lord as vessel can save – himself and those that hear him. Proverbs 14:25 says that only a true witness can deliver souls because a deceitful one would only speak lies. The proof of this is found in 1 Tim 4:16 which says –
Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.
Marks of a Faithful Preacher
Who can Lead us to Salvation
When Jesus Christ was being hunted by the Pharisees so that they could kill him, they would need a point man to indicate which was Jesus (the Judas kiss) because He looked very ordinary and had no distinctive looks to immediately be noticeable. He did not have the tall, dark, and handsome attributes of the dreamboat of ladies, nor the power-figure of authorities, nor the executive looks of educated parliamentarians. By outward appearance then, he did not look like someone capable of being medium for anything to include salvation of souls. From this, one can deduce that faithful preaching cannot be had by just outward appearance.
As when King Saul was sick, he did not specify any physical attribute of one who could help him, but his skill.1 Sam. 16:17 says –
And Saul said unto his servants, Provide me now a man that can play well, and bring him to me.
If the faithful preacher is very much like the inconsequential image of Jesus Christ, he is also chosen not for education or worldly achievements, but for wisdom and some specific skill as in the case of Samuel. While the Jews were said to require a sign, the Greeks would seek after wisdom (1 Cor. 1:22). God depends on the faithfulness of the preacher and is pleased even of what wisdom he has, to save those who believe. 1 Cor. 1:21 says –
For after that in the wisdom of God, the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
A faithful preacher is a medium for salvation by his teachings. As such, he doesn’t just tell stories. He is well acquainted with his resources, keeps a large perspective over his topic, has mastery over his material, and knows very well his objectives. He has a good grasp of the learning needs of his learners, and when he delivers his teachings, he does it properly. In teaching, he does not talk for himself or for his own glory but of the one who sent him. This is one mark in discerning whether a preacher is of God or not. John 7:17-18 says –
If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself. He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him.
Employing the Word of God rightfully then, there is no way the faithful preacher could be unrighteous. Studying is required of him to show himself approved unto God, with no need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15). The faithful preacher exerts effort to study the word of God instead of picking up interpretations of so-called Bible scholars in their university hermeneutics courses, and mouthing them without any probing. Doing this implies that one is spiritually bankrupt, having nothing to lead him to understand.
The teachings of the faithful preacher are clean, having been entrusted with the gospel by God who tries him. As explained in 1 Thes. 2:3-4 –
For our exhortation was not of deceit, nor of uncleanness, nor in guile: But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts.