From the Church To the Church
The Witness of Preaching by Thomas G. Long, Westminster, $13.95
Reviewed by Calvin Miller, pastor, Westside Church, Omaha, Nebraska
Many preachers step into the pulpit perplexed: In the community of believers, they have encountered Christ and been nurtured in faith. Yet they are called to stand apart from that community and speak an authoritative word to it. What can they say to the church which discipled them in the first place?
Thomas Long, associate professor of preaching at Princeton Theological Seminary, knows that tension. But he accepts it, and, in The Witness of Preaching, uses it to inform and clarify the task of preaching.
He does so by binding our pulpit work to one of our prime callings as Christians: to be witnesses. The preacher is a witness of Christ because he has seen Christ in and through the church. Preachers, says Long, are never "visitors from clergy-land . . . ambassadors from seminary-land . . . We are members of the body of Christ . . ...1