Saturday, March 28, 2015

Preaching and Presenting the Ordo Salutis

I've been using Embers to a Flame as a my church revitalization guidebook and in it the author discusses the importance of preaching about the gospel, sin and repentance early in your revitalization ministry and suggests using the doctrines of grace as a framework. His explanation of the ordo salutis ("the logical order of redemption") as salvation from sin is really helpful. I've adapted it below (adding Predestination, Regeneration, Union with Christ and Preservation).

The problem with the traditional Ordo Salutis is presenting the doctrines of grace as a simple list a mistake which even the famous Tim Challies makes. You can overcome this by presenting the doctrines of grace in a roughly sequential list as they are experienced by the believer but distinguishing at the same between stages or ongoing processes.

Preaching the Doctrines of Grace
The purpose of the series will be to present the fabric of the Gospel: what defines the ordinary Christian life and how the gospel changes us.  I'll use Colin Buchanan's song 'Big words ending in shun' and Pilgrim's Progress as unifying motifs and focus each sermon a key representative passage rather than flicking around to much. Maybe a booklet outlining the series with interesting quotes for those who want to go deeper but with an overall focus on repentance and seeing the work of Jesus in saving from every aspect of sin in my congregation's lives.