Augustine, Humility, and Preaching

What if preaching is not only to be carried out with humility, but is also itself a humble form of the Word of God in power? Augustine is known mostly for his large and profound theological treatises, but how can this most influential of theologians also teach us about the urgency of humility as a mode of preaching to humble people?In today's Greystone Conversations episode, Dr. Mark A. Garcia sits down with Greystone’s Associate Fellow in Christian Tradition, Dr. Charles (Chad) Kim of St Louis University. Dr. Kim is the author of a forthcoming book on Augustine and preaching, and the special contribution of his book is Dr. Kim’s exploration of the role of humility in Augustine’s preaching—not only in his content, but in his mode and approach to preaching. In a recent journal article, Dr. Kim anticipated his book in a study of how Augustine preached to an audience of (many, not exclusively) fishermen and farmers in rural North Africa. Dr. Kim emphasizes how Augustine demonstrated the way of humility found in Christ for his audience, a Christological mode that helps to explain why Augustine’s preaching looked so different from that of the modern day. The result is a rich insight into the density and power of a classical Reformed conviction found in the Second Helvetic Confession (chapter 1) but rarely found—or at least deployed—in contemporary works on preaching, namely, that preaching the Word of God is itself truly a form of the Word of God in which God comes near and draws near. How might this conviction change and inspire Reformed preaching?

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The podcast of Greystone Theological Institute, exploring questions of theology, ethics, church faith and life, and more from the perspective of confessional Reformed catholicity.