READ : 2 Corinthians 1:12-22
As surely as God is faithful, our word to you has not been “Yes and No.” (v. 18)
Consider two observations. The first was made by Phillips Brooks, a renowned preacher and author of the famous Christmas carol “O Little Town of Bethlehem.” He wrote: “Preaching is truth through personality.” The second observation was made by communication expert Marshall McLuhan, who said, “The medium is the message.”
Both observations help explain Paul’s eagerness to have the Corinthians know that he was neither fickle nor unreliable when he said he was coming for a visit and then didn’t come. He knows that a message is deeply affected by its messenger.
The 19th-century English theologian John Henry Newman in a sermon once said that the church’s chief strength has not been in rational argument. Revelation, Newman believed, “has been upheld in the world not as a system, not by books, not by arguments, not by temporal power, but by the personal influence of such [people] . . . who are at once the teachers and the pattern of it.”
The best tools in evangelism are godly lives and loving communities. Against such there is no argument. We lose credibility as witnesses, not when we stumble to find the right words, but when our lives contradict our words.
Dear God, empower us, we pray, to live lives worthy of your gospel. Amen.