Delivery should be the spontaneous product of the speaker’s peculiar personality, as acted on by the subject which now fills his mind and heart…it implies that one is possessed with the subject, that he is completely in sympathy with it and fully alive to its importance, that he is not repeating remembered words but setting free the thoughts shut up in his mind.
—John Broadus, On the Preparation and Delivery of Sermons, 264-265, quoted by John MacArthur in Rediscovering Expository Preaching, 330.
Being “possessed with the subject” and “fully alive to its importance” every preaching opportunity is a supernatural work that I desire and for which I must pray week by week for the Spirit’s help.
Children learn far more unspoken theology than we tend to think. Suppose parents have operated with the doctrinal assumption that the kids might or might not turn out, who knows? Why should the children have any confidence about it? Unbelief is the constant, unspoken option. And one day, the option is spoken out loud. But it was always there, hidden away in the hearts of the parents, who always hoped for their childrens’ faith, but never believed for it.
Read answers from Al Mohler, D.A. Carson, and this one from Richard Pratt:
If I could wave a magic scepter and change seminary today, I’d turn it into a grueling physical and spiritual experience. I’d find ways to reach academic goals more quickly and effectively and then devote most of the curriculum to supervised battle simulation. I’d put students through endless hours of hands-on service to the sick and dying, physically dangerous evangelism, frequent preaching and teaching the Scriptures, and days on end of fasting and prayer. Seminary would either make them or break them.