Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Chrysostom on Preaching

"Preaching makes me healthy; as soon as I open my mouth, all tiredness is gone." This saying is ascribed to John Chrysostom d. 407 AD (see von Campenhausen, Fathers of the Greek Church, p. 145). I wish I had read this quote earlier. I just turned down an invitation to speak in a Church Camp in KL. In recent months, I had felt weariness from preaching; 2 weeks ago, I preached 4 sermons on the Day of Prayer on a day we set aside at College for prayer. I said to my colleague, "Perhaps now the Chaplain could excuse me from preaching for the next 4 years!" Earlier in the month I preached in a church along Joo Chiat Road. Although I took taxi there and back, I was tired from the journey, preparations and the sermon plus seminar after the Sunday service. This Sunday I shall be preaching in a church in the East Coast. As pastor of Constantinople, Chrysostom preached almost daily: "I cannot let a day pass without feeding you with the treasures of the Scriptures." How I wish more pastors and congregations are of the same mind as Chrysostom, esteeming the Scriptures as treasures more than all the wealth on earth and pastors would labour to feed the flock with the finest of wheat, even the words of Christ.

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