Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Review of Alex Montoya--Preaching with Passion

Author: Alex Montoya

Pages: 160 pages

Publisher: Kregel

Price: 11.04

Genre: Preaching/Christian Ministry

Quick Summary:

In the 1600’s John Flavel proclaimed, “it is far easier to study and press a thousand truths upon others, than to feel the power of one truth upon our own hearts...” Some 400 years later Alex Montoya has detected the same problem; preachers are often trained for exegetical study but not preaching with passion. This short book offers principles to combat lifeless preaching. As Montoya says, “The fact is many of us simply preach sermons, not the Word of God. We preach the exegesis, not the divine oracle. We preach crafted, alliterated manuscripts instead of the living Word. We are biblical, but the Word has been deadened by a lifeless delivery or a hampering style.

Montoya proffers his suggestions on restoring passion to preaching. He hopes to teach us how to preach with spiritual power, conviction, compassion, authority, urgency, brokenness, the whole being, and the imagination.

What I Liked:

I have noticed, and even fell victim to, the type of passionless preaching that Montoya is combating. If nothing else this book will serve as a wake up call to pastors that merely being exegetically sound is not true expository preaching. Montoya helps us wake up to the reality that how we say something has a bearing on what it is we say. It will serve pastors well to heed the advice given in this book.

Montoya does a good job of reminding us where passion comes from and that it is not simply something that can be conjured up once you get in the pulpit. Passionate preaching is not yelling as you preach. It is, as Martin Lloyd-Jones said, “theology coming through a man who is on fire”. I appreciate that Montoya follows the mold of such men as Lloyd-Jones. It is rare to find a chapter on brokenness in a preaching book, hopefully Montoya’s words will be heeded and will as John MacArthur says in his recommendation, “start an epidemic”.

What I Disliked:

In an effort to stimulate the preacher and spur him on to action our author at times seems a little too anthropocentric for my taste. In Montoya’s defense I do not think he intends to be. There are a few other dangerous statements in the book as well: such as, “preaching needs to be constantly adapting itself to the changing face of culture”. I get what Montoya is saying but it could be potentially misunderstood. However, the overall tenor of the book is solidly biblical (and for my Reformed readers—it is of the Reformed persuasion) and not a major dislike with the book.

Should You Buy It:

Most certainly. The truth of the matter though is that a book cannot create a passionate preacher. This book will not fix all. It will define the problem and give a few suggestions for laboring to become a more passionate preacher. However, it takes a lifetime of boldly broken fellowship with the Almighty to create a passionate preacher.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...