Listening to the Word

Luke Wartgow | Carson Valley Bible Church

Luke Wartgow | Carson Valley Bible Church

One of my greatest privileges as a pastor-elder is to labor in the work of preaching week in and week out. Preaching, or proclaiming the good news of the person and work of Christ, must be done on a regular basis. Preaching is what pastors are called to do (2 Tim 4:2). Preaching is an ordinary means of grace in which he reveals the beauty of the cross and the resurrection to those condemned in their sin. I remember it well at the age of 19 when God used preaching from a section of the book of Matthew to open my eyes to the reality of my sin and also for me to see rightly who Jesus is and what he has done. Preaching has always been and will always be an essential part of the work of God. But long before I became a preacher of the word, I was called to be a listener of the word and will always be a listener of the word. Preachers must give themselves to proper presentation of the word, but do we also see our need to be good listeners of the word? It is my experience that for many of us, we don’t give a lot of thought to how we prepare our hearts to hear the Word on Sunday. Furthermore, to have the word rightly preached is to hear from God himself. He is leading us, alongside all believers throughout time, to give ears to listen and respond to Him. Practically, I would encourage Christians to prepare themselves to receive God’s word in several ways. First, prepare to remove as many distractions as possible to give yourself to hearing the word. Second, anticipate and long for the truths of God and the changing power of the gospel to be at hand. Third, do you pray to be reproved, rebuked, and encouraged by the word? Lastly, do you return to his word throughout the week? Although not exhaustive, these are a few ways that I would encourage you to accompany your listening of the word. At the end of the day, God uses his word to bring us to faith, he uses his word to build us up in our faith, and he uses his word to equip us in the outworking of our faith. Ultimately, preaching and listening to God’s word is essential to our faith.

Luke Wartgow is Lead Pastor of Carson Valley Bible Church.


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