Shock-jock Preaching

I was so offended I almost shook. I had never heard such language from the pulpit.

After our missions speaker illustrated Jesus' compassion for those who were untouchable, he became more intense as he called us to action. In a voice wrought with emotion, he described how the drought in Somalia decimated innocent people while a wealthy western church grew rich and lazy.

With tears welling in his eyes, he thundered that while we slept that night, 2,500 Somalian children would die of disease and starvation.

It was the next sentence that slapped me in the face. He punctuated each word with a pause.

"And you … probably … don't … give … a … shit."

I sat there stunned and almost sickened that the pulpit, a holy place, echoed such gutter language. Then I turned indignant. How could he know my compassion? How dare he?

A thick silence hung in the air. Then, leaning over the pulpit, he lowered his voice to a quiet, pitying tone.

"And do you know what the really sad thing ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
Let’s Build Something Together
Let’s Build Something Together
Big change starts small.
From the Magazine
Hope Is an Expectant Leap
Hope Is an Expectant Leap
Advent reminds us that Christian hope is shaped by what has happened and what’s going to happen again.
Editor's Pick
How Culture Shapes Sermons
How Culture Shapes Sermons
Recent books on culturally distinct preaching challenge misconceptions and equip diverse pastors to better address a multiethnic world.
close