Preaching the dangers of tradition

29 May

Next Sunday, the next passage in our church’s current sermon series is Mark 7. In this passage, Jesus condemns the religious leaders of his day for allowing their traditions to trump the actual law of God.

One quick thought: as pastors, when we preach on allowing the traditions of men to violate the authority of God, we need to apply these passages to the actual kinds of traditions that our people are struggling with. As Protestants, our knee-jerk impulse is to find reason in this passage (and those like it) to condemn yet again the liturgical traditions of popery. This is not inappropriate.

And yet I wonder, in many of our congregations, if such traditions have any pull with our folks.

Here’s a test: if you preach against the traditions of men in your church and elicit nothing but hearty amens, you have certainly missed your target.


Posted by on May 29, 2012 in Conservatism, Pastoral


4 responses to “Preaching the dangers of tradition

  1. Ryan Martin

    May 29, 2012 at 9:17 am

    Agreed, but I think the thing most overlooked today is that Christ is not rejecting traditions per se, but the traditions we invent that allow us to disobey what God has specifically commanded. Sometimes the fences we say we’re setting up to help us obey are really merely ways of getting away from what God really told us to do.

  2. Sam Hendrickson

    May 30, 2012 at 12:29 pm


  3. L. Mark Bruffey

    June 10, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    A question arises. Do the Scriptures–to which we must add nothing and from which we must remove nothing–teach that there are certain things, not stated in Scripture, that human beings are simply expected by God to know?

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