Tag Archives: sermon

Whatever It Takes | Bible Gleanings – November 28-29, 2020

Whatever It Takes

Anthony Capuano, a 29-year-old swim coach and lifeguard, became a local hero as he rescued a man from drowning in his car in Newark Bay, New Jersey. According to The Jersey Journal, an elderly man attempted to pull over to answer a phone call, but accidentally pressed on both the brake and accelerator which caused him to speed into the bay. A group of bystanders screamed in fright as the flashing tail lights swiftly sank. That’s when Capuano’s instincts took over. Abandoning his own safety, he dove into the frigid water, swam fifty feet to the man’s submerged vehicle, and pulled him to safety.

Capuano was an unexpected savior, however, because as he recalled, he had to remove his own leg before swimming—his prosthetic leg. When Capuano was a teenager, he was struck by a train that cost him his leg. A paramedic team saved his life and that’s likely what motivated him to pursue the profession of saving others as a lifeguard. Capuano relinquished his own security and safety to deliver a man from death. He did everything he could to get the man to safety, although he had obvious limitations. And he was compelled to come to the rescue because he himself had been saved by the selfless effort of someone else.

What Capuano did for a man in peril is what God wants you to do for those in spiritual peril. The unsaved are drowning in a sea of guilt and sin, and their souls are in eternal danger. Sin is driving them madly down the road of spiritual destruction and they are in jeopardy of fatally immersing themselves into “lake of fire” (Rev. 20:15). Only Jesus Christ the Lord can save and deliver them, but it is your Christian duty to swim out to them with the life-saving message of the gospel. You must do everything you can to win them to Christ, just like the four men who overcame every obstacle to get their paralyzed friend to Jesus (Mark 2:1-5).

As C. H. Spurgeon once preached, “If sinners be damned, at least let them leap to hell over our dead bodies. And if they perish, let them perish with our arms wrapped about their knees, imploring them to stay. If hell must be filled, let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go unwarned and unprayed for.”

Whatever it takes to get the unsaved to Jesus is worth it—even if you must sacrifice your comfort and security. You may have limitations, but God will use you when you give yourself to Him as a willing vessel. And remember—someone once swam out to you with the gospel. Therefore, let gratefulness for your own salvation compel you to swim out to unbelievers with the same gospel that saved you.


Bible Gleanings is a weekend devotional column, written for the Murray Ledger & Times in Calloway County, Kentucky. In the event that the column is not posted online, it will be posted for reading here.

Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their three dogs, Susie (Jack Russell), Aries (Aussiedor), and Dot (beagle).

6 Reasons for Preaching Christ

No one can say it like Charles Spurgeon. During one of his sermons, he expressed great astonishment at preachers whose sermons were not centered on Christ. And he gave this stunning exhortation: “No Christ in your sermon, sir? Then go home, and never preach again until you have something worth preaching.”

Jesus is worthy to be preached. Christ should be clearly and powerfully proclaimed in our sermons, brethren. If He is not, our sermons simply aren’t worth preaching. We who preach Sunday after Sunday (should) recognize the importance of preaching Christ. In our expositions, there should always be a connection with the person of Christ, the teaching of Christ, or the work of Christ. But why should we preach Christ in the first place? Why should pastors make effort to preach Christ in their sermons?

In his monumental work, Preaching Christ from the Old Testament, Sidney Greidanus gives us six reasons for preaching Christ.¹ Here they are:

1. Preach Christ Because the Apostles Did

The New Testament gives us dozens of instances where Peter, Paul, and the other apostles powerfully and consistently preached Christ. In fact, the book of Acts records that every sermon they preached was always centered on Jesus. Jesus was the shining light in their message, whether it was Peter’s sermon at Pentecost, Stephen’s sermon to the Sanhedrin, or the numerous sermons preached by Paul. Greidanus explains, “The heart of apostolic preaching is Jesus Christ . . . The New Testament church preached the birth, ministry, death, resurrection, and exaltation of Jesus of Nazareth as the fulfillment of God’s old covenant promises, His presence today in the Spirit, and His imminent return.” We need to follow the example of the apostles and preach Christ in our sermons. The reason we may not have the results the apostles did when they preached is that we do not model our preaching after them.

2. Preach Christ Because Jesus Commanded It

Every believer knows the chief mission of the church is to make disciples who will follow Christ in obedience. Jesus commands us, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:18-20). There is a lot to say about this passage, but one thing to notice is that every component of the Great Commission is centered on Christ. Disciples of Christ are to be made. They are to be taught to observe all that Jesus commanded. And the presence of Jesus will be with us as we do.

Disciples will be produced when we teach people to observe all that Jesus promised, warned, taught, and commanded. Just like the disciples of Jesus’ day, we are commanded by our Lord to preach Him today. His command is an enduring one and nothing has changed about the mission of the church since the day Christ uttered these words. Greidanus comments, “Christian preachers today also live under the command to preach the name of Jesus Christ, for the command to preach Christ reaches far beyond the first apostles and Gospel writers – it reaches ‘to the end of the age.'”

3. Preach Christ Because It Is Exciting

What could be more exciting than preaching Christ? What Christ accomplished for His people is the greatest thing in history. It is only logical to preach Christ because of the nature of the message. I love how Greidanus put it: “Even today when a President or a Queen visits a city, the arrival itself is a newsworthy event. No one needs to command broadcasters to tell the story, for the story itself begs to be told. If this is true for the arrival of a President or a Queen, how much more for the arrival of ‘the King of Kings.'” Yes! We need to preach the story of Christ because it has to be told.

4. Preach Christ Because It Is Life-Giving

We need to preach Christ because of what God does when we do. God saves people through the hearing and preaching of the gospel (Rom. 10:14-17; Eph. 1:13). Our sinful world is spiritually dead, cut off from God, and headed for an eternity in hell. The message of Jesus Christ gives people spiritual life, reconciles them to God, and guarantees a new eternal destination. Because of the life-giving nature of preaching Christ, we are compelled to preach Christ. Woe unto us if we don’t preach Christ (1 Cor. 9:16)! Greidanus powerfully illustrates this point: “When there was an outbreak of polio in British Columbia, Canada, in the 1970s, the government wasted no time getting out the message to all parents to have their children inoculated against polio. It was a vital message; it needed to be broadcast immediately. The need to tell was obvious in the light of the disease and the availability of an antidote. [In the same way] People need to be told about the cure [the gospel].”

5. Preach Christ Because It Is Exclusive News

The need to preach Christ is also seen in the exclusive nature of the message. We need to preach Christ because, “There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). There is no other message available which saves people from their sins. There are not “many ways to God,” and if there were, preaching Christ would be no big deal. It would just be one path among many. But the Bible teaches that Christ is the only path – the only way to God (John 14:6). Therefore, Greidanus says, “If Jesus were one of many ways of salvation, the church could relax a bit, hoping that people might find some other way to be saved from death. But now that Christ is the only way, the urgency of preaching Christ is all the more pressing. There is salvation in no one else but Jesus.”

6. Preach Christ Because Our Culture Is Anti-Christ

Finally, we need to preach Christ because we live in a non-Christian culture. As our culture continues to move on from Judeo-Christian values, the need for preaching Christ continues to increase. This culture shift unfortunately affects both believers and unbelievers. We cannot assume that believers know Jesus as we think they do, or that unbelievers know that the Jesus we worship is the Bible’s Jesus. More than any other time in history, our culture is in desperate need of preaching Christ. Greidanus observes, “The early church, in the nature of the case, addressed people living in a non-Christian culture. People needed to hear about Christ and the difference he makes. But contemporary preachers equally address people living in a non-Christian or post-Christian culture. If contemporary hearers were living in a culture saturated with Christian thinking and action, one might perhaps take for granted that people hearing a sermon would sense how it is related to Christ.” But we cannot, and therefore should not, assume this.


  1. Greidanus, Sidney. Preaching Christ from the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1999), 10-14.

profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

The Persecuted Church (Rev. 2:8-11)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 5th day of May 2018, during the morning service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

The Loveless Church (Rev. 2:1-7)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 29th day of April 2018, during the morning service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

The Preservation of Christian Unity (Eph. 4:2-3)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 28th day of October 2018, during the evening service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

Introduction to Unity: Living Worthy of Who You Are (Eph. 4:1)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 21st day of October 2018, during the evening service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

You Have an Inheritance (Eph. 1:14)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 28th day of October 2018, during the morning service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

The Priority of the Lord’s Supper (Acts 20:7-12)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 7th day of October 2018, during the morning service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

You Are God’s Possession (Eph. 1:11-12)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 30th day of September 2018, during the morning service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with biblical resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.

You Are Enlightened (Eph. 1:9-10)

The following sermon was delivered at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky, on the 23rd day of September 2018, during the morning service:


profile pic5Brandon is the founder and main contributor to Brandon’s Desk, the blog with free Christian resources from his ministry. He is proud to be the pastor of the family of believers at Locust Grove Baptist Church in Murray, Kentucky. He and his wife Dakota live there with their two dogs, Susie and Aries.