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Sermon #PP16

The Spirit and The Power

A Lecture on Preaching in the Power of the Holy Spirit



Sermon Description

What is the power in preaching? Is it in the preacher’s own preparation and scholarship? If it is, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues that they are to be most miserable. In this sermon titled “The Spirit and the Power,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones expounds upon what he believes to be the most important ingredient in preaching: the unction, or power, of the Holy Spirit. Consider the apostles: they had all of the teaching and preparation, but this was not enough. The Holy Spirit must come and give these men power to preach the gospel. In one’s own strength, the preacher is filled with only fear and trembling. He is a weak man; an “earthen vessel.” Dr. Lloyd-Jones tells of a minister who went to bed feeling utterly incapable, and awoke the next morning feeling like a lion ready to preach. What happened? This man was filled with the power of the Holy Spirit. This power in preaching gives the preacher clarity of thought and speech. It gives assurance and confidence in their proclamation of God’s word. This power, however, is not something the preacher can conjure up. It is a gift of God. Unction is something that comes upon, and takes hold of, the preacher. Listen as he encourages his students to pray for this power in their preaching.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The preacher's own consciousness is aware of the unction and anointing of the Holy Spirit. There is clarity of thought, clarity of speech, ease of utterance, great assurance and confidence.
  2. The unction gives a feeling of not doing the preaching yourself. You feel like an instrument or channel that the Spirit is using. You look on with amazement at what is happening.
  3. The people immediately know when the preacher has this unction. They become serious, convicted of sin, humbled, and lifted up. They want more teaching and fellowship.
  4. Examples of this unction are seen throughout Scripture and church history. Prophets, apostles, reformers, preachers were clothed with power from on high.
  5. We should seek, expect, and yearn for this power in our preaching. We must yield to the Spirit when it comes. This is the only hope for true preaching today.
  6. Apart from the Spirit, we can do nothing. We must realize our weakness and reliance on God.
  7. The unction is the supreme essential for preaching. It makes us able ministers of the New Testament.

Sermons: Preaching and Preachers

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.