What To Do When The Preaching Is Bad

I have been exposed to church preaching all of my life. During that time I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly. Fortunately, in my experiences, the good has outweighed the bad. I know everyone can’t say that. If you go to a decent variety of churches and services, chances are you have been or will be exposed to some bad preaching. Here is what you can do when you experience bad church preaching.

What Is Your Definition of Bad?
I’ve learned that people have different definitions of what bad preaching is. Many of us expect today’s preachers to be extremely charismatic. If the preacher doesn’t sweat and leave everyone yelling and shouting, then he or she did not do a good job in the eyes of many people. Even if they were speaking the absolute truth, often times some of us rather prefer presentation over content. That is unfortunate.

For the sake of this post, bad preaching is when one of the following occurs. First, the preacher’s message contains many inaccuracies that are not supported by the Bible. Second, the delivery of the message is so incoherent that it is difficult to understand the purpose of the message.

Take Some Action
After hearing bad preaching, the first thing you should do is pray. Ask God what he was trying to say to you through the sermon. It is possible that the preaching wasn’t bad, and you just missed what God was trying to say.

The next thing you want to do is pray for the preacher delivering the sermon. Chances are that they truly love the Lord. Unfortunately, they have some slight issues when it comes to conveying God’s word. Pray that they Lord will speak to them and help them become a more effective minister.

If these instances of bad preaching occur frequently, I suggest you talk to your pastor. Respectfully share with him or her your concerns about this minister’s preaching ability. If the bad preaching is coming from your pastor, then you may need to consult with God about whether or not he wants you to remain with that specific congregation.

What Not To Do
After hearing somebody flame out in the pulpit it is real easy for you to get with a friend an begin to talk bad about the minister and message you just heard. This is the last thing you want to do. Remember, good preaching or bad preaching, that minister is still a child of God. Talking bad about them would not please God at all. As a body of believers, our goal should be to build each other up and not tear each other down.

Have you had any experiences with bad preaching? What did you do?

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  • http://howgreatismygod.blogspot.com/ Skipper

    Eeek! Hope no one thinks I am a bad preacher!! :)

    I have only ever heard a few “bad” sermons, and that isn’t because the Preacher was bad… it was just that their beliefs were not doctrinally sound. In particular one man based his message on his cultural and his generational beliefs. My husband and I spoke to our Pastor about this – and that was it. It’s not up to us to “do” anything else.

    As a preacher, if I delivered a “bad” sermon, I would not want it to be discussed amongst the congregation – gossip won’t help me get better. Constructive criticism spoken in love will definately help! I would rather have the chance to improve, rather than be labelled as the “dodgy preacher.”

    Great post BTW!

  • http://your-dailyword.blogspot.com Mikes Sumondong

    I have had experiences of “Bad” preaching but i still do believe in my heart every preaching will always be an avenue of God to talk to us and spread His word. it maybe bad because of the preacher’s ability but the WORD he preaches doesn’t change. What’s important is the heart who will receive the WORD.

    God Bless!

  • http://www.writingforgod.com Michael Aulia

    Love the post.

    Unfortunately most of us are focused more on the preacher, instead of the Word of God being preached :[

  • delmarha

    I have been in church services where the pastor talked bad about his wife, sexualized her in front of the congregation, and proceeded to wrap his sermon around stuff from people’s Facebook page. That is the absolute worst! I have sat under some good preaching, but there have been some oddball instances I have witnessed. You have to be very careful in church. You need to take your Bible, pray for those ministering, and pray that young/impressionable Christians don’t get led astray. I get shocked sometimes at the inappropriate way some preachers talk or treat members of their congregation from the pulpit. Some use the pulpit as a place to air out their bad feelings towards family members and members of the congregation. Sad state of affairs and God is not pleased. But, He is merciful obviously since these people are able to continue this nonsense.

  • Geezle

    Definition of Bad:
    Bad preaching is preaching which delivers little or no spiritual food.
    What do you do if you go to a restaurant where there is little or no edible food?
    Do you pray for the chef?

  • Geezle

    Definition of Bad:
    Bad preaching is preaching which delivers little or no spiritual food.
    What do you do if you go to a restaurant where there is little or no edible food?
    Do you pray for the chef?

  • richtfan

    all of that sounds great, but it won’t ultimately solve the problem. I mean, prayer can sometimes solve it. But pulpit committees sometimes hire the wrong person. To assume that God wants that minister in place at your church just because the search committee agreed on it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the right decision. have you considered that there may be other issues like leadership, vision, organization etc. that go into being a good minister and not only preaching on Sunday mornings? what if there are numerous deficiencies and not just one? prayer does change things, but what if the person is convinced he cannot do it any other way than the way he is doing it?

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