I wish I could speak with authority and confidence every time a church member asks me one of life's nagging questions
"How many gunmen were in Dallas in 1963?"
"What do you think of Oliver North (or Anita Hill or George Bush, Jr., or … )?"
"How can we balance the national budget?"
And these are the easy ones! Others ask theological or moral questions:
"How can America deal Christianly with a Saddam Hussein?"
"Do my loved ones who've died know what I'm experiencing right now? Can they see me?"
"What should Christians do to stop abortion?"
I'm not really sure.
People expect pastors to have answers. We learn in seminary that we should preach the Word of God with boldness, much like Jesus who amazed the crowds because "he taught as one who had authority."
Our congregations hear fearless television and radio preachers, dogmatic media personalities, and opinionated pundits who exude confidence and certainty about complex issues.
One-way communication from pulpits, even plexiglass pulpits, has an ...1