On the day of his first public service at St. Mary Woolnoth, John Newton explained to his hearers the truths that would inform his gospel ministry. They are evangelical and gospel-centered as to be expected with on like Newton. One thing, however, that I believe sets Newton apart as an exemplary example for us to follow. He believed that just speaking truth was not the whole of his duty:
But the cause of truth itself may be discredited by improper management; and, therefore, the Scripture which furnishes us with subject-matter for our ministry, and teaches us what we are to say, is equally explicit as to temper and spirit in which we are to speak. Though I had the knowledge of all mysteries, and the tongue of an angel to declare them, I could hope for little acceptance or usefulness, unless I was to speak “in love”.
I believe Newton is correct. Just speaking truthfully—even eloquently--about the great mysteries of our faith is not sufficient. Certainly the Lord is powerful and convert sinners using even the weakest means. But the apostolic method of preaching/pastoring/leading/living is to speak the truth in love. Both are necessary.
“Loving” people without speaking truth is a sham. At the same time, speaking truth without loving people is a mockery of Christ our example.