The Christian’s mind—a renewed, pure, prepared, spiritually sensitive, self-controlled mind—is the complete antithesis of the Pagan’s mind (cf. Romans 12:1,2). As such, he is called upon to out-think, out-live, and out-die the Pagans all around him. What is the key, then? Simply this: The Christian’s mind does not trust in its own powers, but in the power of I AM THAT I AM (cf. Proverbs 3:5,6).
But in a church overrun with the think-sos of men, as the modern church is, such thinking will become increasingly difficult. Preachers attempting to preach the whole counsel of God will find it hard to maintain their integrity as they’re tempted to simply float along with the opinions, values, and fads of the masses.
At the same time, there seems to be an indication that some are beginning to see the folly of “Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:9). Shelving the think-sos of the modern scribes, such are returning to the God-breathed Word as their source of authority. The reason for this turning back to God’s Word has been, in part, to the efforts of those hardheaded preachers among us who, like the prophets of old, will not bow or bend to the totems of this world.
In Ezekiel 3:8,9, the prophet, who was sent to speak God’s Word to a rebellious Israel, was told by God:
Behold I have made your face strong against their faces, and your forehead strong against their foreheads. Like adamant stone, harder than flint, I have made your forehead; do not be afraid of them, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they are a rebellious house.
If this present generation of Christians isn’t going to be lost, it will be, in part, to the efforts of the hardheaded preachers among us who do not need to test the winds of public sentiment before they decide what they are going to preach. The next decade will be critical. Will the general malaise of the last forty-plus years continue, or will it be a decade in which we, as a people, meet the challenge our Lord has set before us? If the latter, then a strong and vibrant church will be focused on God and His glory, generously supporting the efforts of all hardheaded preachers who will “Preach the word!” Consequently, it’ll be lifting up the hands of those who will “Be ready in season and out of season.” It’ll be defending, not maligning, those who will “Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.”
Finally, if the modern church is to be saved, then preachers must be willing to exhibit the kind of hardheadedness that, with God’s help, will save not only themselves, but those who hear them (cf. I Timothy 4:16).