“Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you.” ~ 1 Timothy 4:16 (NASB95)
Don’t get caught up in the latest hype or fads, successful gospel work stands on these 2 pillars…
- yourself: Develop personal integrity that matches your message, far greater harm than can be imagined is done when the one tasked with sharing the gospel of God’s grace destroys the impact of their work by the stain of rebellion. Paul was keenly on point “but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified. ~ 1 Corinthians 9:27 (NASB95)
- your teaching: Be true to the book. No amount of “relevant ideas”, “new line thought”, or “it will help right now well wishing” can suplant the simplicity and genuine effectiveness of the very message God wants to be spoken. The Holy Spirit charged “But as for you, speak the things which are fitting for sound doctrine” ~ Titus 2:1
Beyond this, there is clearly the need for hard work and competent answers to the challenging questions of life and Godliness, but if you deviate from these 2 pillars no amount of sophistry or worldly wisdom will undo the lasting harm done.