Quotations by and for Preachers


Quotes on PreachingBelow are a few prompts for your thoughts. Please do not strip mine them for your sermon in coming weeks. These are meant for pondering, for personal reflection, for prayer, and for transformation of the preacher. Then, if they have lived within the well of your heart for some time, feel free to preach them. Read each one. Read it again. Breath a prayer about it. Journal for a moment. Or go for a walk. But above all else, hear God through one of them…and let God speak to you, for you.

“When God gets ready to shake America, He may not take the Ph.D. and the D.D. God may choose a country boy … God may choose the man that no one knows, a little nobody, to shake America for Jesus Christ in this day, and I pray that He would!”

—Billy Graham

“To know the Word of God, to live the Word of God, to preach the Word, to teach the Word, is the sum of all wisdom, the heart of all Christian service.”

—Charles E. Fuller

“The great commandment is that we preach the gospel to every creature, but neither God nor the Bible says anything about forcing it down people’s throats.”

― Louis Zamperini, Devil at My Heels

All places where women are excluded tend downward to barbarism; but the moment she is introduced, there come in with her courtesy, cleanliness, sobriety, and order.

—Harriet Beecher Stowe

“There is no justification without sanctification, no forgiveness without renewal of life, no real faith from which the fruits of new obedience do not grow.”

—Martin Luther

“The man who is contented to be only himself, and therefore less a self, is in prison. My own eyes are not enough for me, I will see through those of others. Reality, even seen through the eyes of many, is not enough. I will see what others have invented …. in reading great literature I become a thousand men and yet remain myself. Like the night sky in the Greek poem, I see with a myriad eyes, but it is still I who see. Here, as in worship, in love, in moral action, and in knowing, I transcend myself; and am never more myself than when I do.”

—C. S. Lewis

“If God has given graces to some good women, revealing to them something holy and good through His Holy Scriptures, should they, for the sake of the defamers of the truth, refrain from writing down, speaking, or declaring it to each other? Ah! It would be too impudent to hide the talent which God has given us, we who ought to have the grace to persevere to the end. Amen!”

—Marie Dentière, former abbess and wife of a Protestant minister (1495-1561)

“If your ministry can’t work without you, then it is no longer Christ-centered. Minister toward Jesus, not yourself.”

― Rev. Kellen Roggenbuck

“To believe one does not need counsel is great pride.”

—Basil the Great

“There’s no greater lifestyle and no greater happiness than that of having a continual conversation with God.”

—Brother Lawrence

“Evangelism without social work is deficient; social work without evangelism is impotent.”

—John R. Mott

“The fellow that has no money is poor. The fellow that has nothing but money is poorer still.”

—Billy Sunday

Earth is so thick with divine possibility that it is a wonder we can walk anywhere without cracking our shins on altars.

—Barbara Brown Taylor

“Give me … a compassionate heart, quickly moved to grieve for the woes of others and to active pity for them, even as our Lord Jesus Christ beheld our poverty and hasted to help us. Give me grace ever to alleviate the crosses and difficulties of those around me, and never to add to them; teach me to be a consoler in sorrow, to take thought for the stranger, the widow, and the orphan; let my charity show itself not in words only but in deed and truth.”

—Johann Arndt

“The secret of preaching is not mastering certain techniques but being mastered by certain convictions.”

—John Stott, The Challenge of Preaching

“Observe: It is not your business to preach so many times, and to take care of this or that society; but to save as many souls as you can; to bring as many sinners as you possibly can to repentance, and with all your power to build them up in that holiness without which they cannot see the Lord.”

—John Wesley