Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The Desperate Need for More Faithful Heralds!
Geoffrey R. Kirkland
Christ Fellowship Bible Church

1 Timothy 2:7 — For this I myself was appointed a preacher [εἰς ὃ ἐτέθην ἐγὼ κῆρυξ].

The desperate need in the times of our day is for more heralds to rise up who will confidently, courageously, and unflinchingly proclaim God’s message, to God’s people, using God’s method, for God’s glory. What is it that characterizes a faithful herald? What is a God-glorifying preacher? What is it to preach? To herald? This brief essay will help define what a faithful herald is.

A faithful herald is one who faithfully, regularly, confidently, and courageously manifests each of these following six characteristics.

1. Courageously Stands to Herald the Sovereign’s Message.
A faithful herald stands with courage obeying the Master’s mandate to herald the message that has been entrusted to him to faithfully impart to others. The content does not change the mandate to herald. To herald is to faithfully announce. It is to courageously declare. It is to authoritatively deliver a message. Thus, a herald courageously stands and heralds the message.

2. Emphatically Refuses to Alter the King’s Message.
To change the King’s message even in the slightest is to deliver another message than that which he was called upon to deliver. To change the message is to be unfaithful. The sole duty of the herald is to faithfully deliver precisely what the King chooses. He cannot add to it. He must not exclude anything from it. He cannot add his persona, his wisdom, or rhetoric. A faithful herald is one who cries out precisely what the King has given and refuses to alter its content whatsoever.

3. Authoritatively Announces All to Hear the Master’s Message.
All authority that the Master possesses is carried over into the herald’s faithful proclamation. The herald inherently has no authority. He is a nobody. But in so far as he faithfully relays the precise demand of the Master, he comes with the full authority of the sender. Thus, the herald is one who authoritatively announces everyone to pay attention, listen, and heed. The authority is entirely alien to himself. He has no authority. It is the message, faithfully delivered on the part of the Master, that contains all the power, authority, and weightiness in the heralding.

4. Comprehensively Proclaims All of the Content of the Sovereign’s Message.
To read only parts of the message from the Sovereign is to be an unfaithful herald. To herald is to relay to the recipients exactly, precisely, and comprehensively what the sender wishes. To do anything else is unfaithful treason. The height of arrogance is displayed when the messenger picks and chooses what to say from the sender’s message. Thus, a faithful herald must comprehensively proclaim all of the content of the Sovereign’s message. He unapologetically, unflinchingly, unapologetically, and tirelessly proclaims all of the content of the Sovereign’s word.

5. Passionately Pleads With All to Hear, Heed, and Obey the Master’s Message.
A faithful herald has a passionate heart while delivering the message. He earnestly desires that men and women will hear and heed the message. He knows their welfare depends on their obedience to the message. He knows that their disobedience, defiance, and indifference will bring about their harm. So the faithful herald passionately pleads with fire, with urgency, with tears, with brokenness, with earnestness, with compassion, with love, and with persuasion that all will stop and listen, hear and heed, and leave and obey exactly what the Master commands. A heartless herald is an unfaithful herald. A heartless crier is a worthless crier. No one listens to someone speak about that which he has no desire to listen to himself. But the man who is on fire about the message in which he delivers compels others to listen. And so the preacher pleads with all to hear and obey the stipulations given by the Sovereign.

6. Confidently Trusts that the Master is Pleased with Faithfulness in Delivering the King’s Message.
No herald can produce the King’s results. A herald finds himself completely and utterly impotent in producing any results — lasting results, that is. To faithfully deliver the message is his charge. To fully impart the King’s message i
s his only duty. To do anything other is unfaithful defiance. Thus, a faithful herald must trust wholeheartedly that his duty is to accurately dispense the message, not to bring about results. The faithful herald recognizes that he must deliver with faithfulness the King’s message. He is not accountable whatsoever, even in the slightest, for producing the King’s results. His duty is singular, to be faithful to his charge. The herald is accountable to one as to how faithfully he announced the message. He gives an account to his Master. Thus, a faithful herald will trust confidently that the Master takes great pleasure in the herald’s faithfulness to deliver, impart, and cry the King’s message — regardless of the response.

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