WHAT IS REQUIRED OF THOSE WHO HEAR THE WORD PREACHED?

What is required of those that hear the word preached? This is Question #160 in the Westminster Larger Catechism and just like all the questions asked in the Catechism, it is a very important question. Here is the answer:

A. It is required of those that hear the word preached, that they attend upon it with diligence, preparation, and prayer; examine what they hear by the scriptures; receive the truth with love, meekness, and readiness of mind, as the word of God; meditate, and confer of it; hide it in their hearts, and bring forth the fruit of it in their lives.

The Catechism outlines a simple ten point plan on how you can promote power preaching:

1. Be careful and persistent to attend each worship service. Irregular attendance is the spiritual equivalent of a poor, inconsistent diet and will result in malnourishment;

2. Listen carefully to the sermon. Fight off mental distraction. Concentrate;

3. Prepare your heart and pray before you come;

4. Pray for the preaching of the Word;

5. Evaluate what you hear by the Word of God. This assumes that you are reading the Bible on your own between Sundays and are gaining knowledge of what Scripture teaches;

6. Humbly receive the truths preached as God speaking to you, not just the human preacher;

7. Think about the sermon. Mull it over. Think of ways to apply the truths of the sermon in your life;

8. Talk about the sermon with others after the service and at home on Sunday afternoon;

9. Memorize key Scriptures from sermons;

10. Seek to obey what you hear. Be a doer of the Word, not just a hearer (James 1:22). Seek to put off sin, and put on obedience. This requires prayer that God will enable you to obey and ‘bear fruit for Christ’ as the Word is planted in your heart through preaching.”

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