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A lesson in preaching from history

John Chrysostom was around at the turn of the 5th century AD, he lived and died preaching the Good News of Jesus Christ. His preaching led to his posthumously assigned surname, Chrysostom: "golden mouth." The same preaching also exiled him twice, the second exile being three years under armed guard which would lead to his death.   He became known as "John the golden-mouthed" because of his anointed preaching. It was said that Preaching improves me,” he once told his congregation. “When I begin to speak, weariness disappears; when I begin to teach, fatigue too disappears. Thus neither sickness itself nor indeed any other obstacle is able to separate me from your love... for just as you are hungry to listen to me, so too I am hungry to preach to you.”

And people loved to hear him preach, historical records of his preaching say: "As he advanced from exposition to illustration, from Scripture to practical appeals, his delivery became gradually more rapid, his countenance more animated, his voice more vivid and intense. The people would hold their breath. They felt as if drawn forward toward the pulpit by a sort of magnetic influence. Some who were sitting rose from their seats. By the time the discourse came to an end, the great mass of that spellbound audience could only hold their heads and weep with tears."  

 As I argue in my recent podcast episode, we must preach and preach with urgency: we need more golden mouths today. 

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