How important is preaching?
For some of us, we don't realize the importance of the public preaching and proclamation of the gospel (1 Pet 4:11; Rom 10:14-15; Acts 14:1). I fear that in a pendulum swinging response to the common Christian environment of eloquent and knowledgeable preachers and speakers who lack any life of holiness, we have at best minimized, and at worst denounced the art, craft, and impact of biblical preaching. I for one was turned off by the apparent facade of eloquent preachers who lacked any real evidence of repentance taking place in their hearts and lives. All to many scandals have been seen from religious leaders. And so, we have reacted by denouncing the public limelight, and all that comes with it (like preaching) in order to focus singularly on one's personal life and holiness. Generally, if someone is living righteously, pursuing holiness, and living an exemplary life, this qualifies them to preach the word of God publically. But does it? Jesus said, "You have heard it said, but I tell you the truth ... ". Jesus of course, talked privately with his disciples and taught them (as Paul is recorded as doing also - cf. Acts 20:20), and of course Jesus lived a life that was unable to be properly accused (cf. Mark 15:3-5), and he healed people and performed many miracles ... but he also preached. I believe a balance must be struck (and for my immediate context, I think we lean in one direction generally) where people have an exemplary life of holiness that others can be called to (cf 1 Tim 4:12) but also who are qualified and can accurately and persuasively preach the word (cf. 1 Tim 4:12; 2 Tim 2:15) so we can aid the body in becoming mature (cf Eph 4:11-16).