Dr. B.G. Buchanan
B. G. Buchanan was a well-loved preacher who pastored for many years in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He graduated to glory in June of 2018.
“Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,” (Mark 1:14)
I’m going to preach to you on just that one word, “preaching.” These words, preached, preacher, preachest, preacheth, or preaching, it’s mentioned 83 times in the Bible. If it were just mentioned once, that would be enough, but it’s mentioned 83 times.
Notice what Paul said, “Whereunto I am appointed a preacher, and an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.” (II Timothy 1:11) It didn’t sound like he just decided he would do it. No, God decided and called him. Every now and then somebody will come along and say, “Well, You know God never spoke to me. I decided this was a good thing and I started doing it.” I’m sorry. I don’t find that in the Bible. Notice Paul mentions that he was, “...appointed a preacher,...”
Some years ago I preached a series on this. The Bible says, “For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.” (1 Corinthians 1:17-21) There is a difference in preaching.
There is a difference between lecturing, teaching, and preaching. Preaching ought to hit us hard. It ought to grip us with conviction. It ought to hit with convincing force. When I walked into an independent Baptist church on a Wednesday night, there was not a soft, silky guy with a million watt smile in the pulpit. There was an ex-marine in the pulpit, who had red hair and combed it straight back. When he got up to preach, he didn’t look out there and see me, my wife, and Dee Dee, that were there with about 25 people in that crowd and thought, “Now I better slack up a little bit today, so I can get that young guy and his family.” Not on your life! He just reared back and preached. His preaching hit me, and his preaching convicted me. As a matter of fact, I’m not like some of you. I got under conviction during the song service, before the preaching even started. I mean that. God was working on me that whole service. Now preaching ought to hit with conviction and convincing force.
Preaching either draws people, or it repels people. I can show you that all through the Bible. Jesus’ great sermon in John six, talking about the Lord’s Supper and on and on He went. Then when He finished preaching, the Bible said that many of his disciples walked away and followed Him no more. Some of you folks that want a middle of the line kind of church, you’re in the wrong place. You need to let God open your heart, speak to your heart, and you need to let God do something in your heart.
The preachers in the Bible and in days gone by, their preaching sometimes was met with hate, bitterness, rage, opposition, repulsion, or salvation and obedience and growth. John the Baptist stirred people up with his preaching. He looked out at them and said, “You generation of vipers.” He didn’t look out there and say, “It’s good to have you religious leaders here today. We want Dr. Know Nothing to stand up and be recognized, and Dr. Wiggle Jaw to come up and lead in prayer,” and all kind of stuff. No! He said, “You’re a generation of snakes and vipers.” He hit them. He aimed that Gospel gun and pulled the trigger and got them right between the eyes.
Stephen had an opportunity to preach. He stood before almost the same crowd and looked at them and went down through their life history and down through their genealogy. He got to a point, and he started hitting to close too home and too personal, and they got mad.
The Apostle Paul with his preaching stirred people up. He made the government mad. He made people around him mad. He made the devils and the demons mad. He made everybody mad, and then some got saved.
Jesus, what a Preacher was Jesus. Jesus, contrary to what some of you think, He didn’t look out and say, “Now I better be careful here, and keep it sweet and nice.” He preached to the folks. There are adults. There are teens. There’s some women and children. There are a few good men. There are some bitter people. There are some people that are mad. (Some folks got up mad.) There are some glad people. There are some hurting people. There are some people who are discouraged. There are some folks who are young Christians. There are some old Christians, already been saved a long time. There are some growing Christians. There are some backslidden Christians. There are some cold Christians. There are some indifferent Christians.
There are some folks who have read their Bible, and some folks who have not read their Bible. There are some thieves. They stole from God. They stole His time. They stole His air. They stole His money. They stole His water. They stole His breath, and they haven’t given Him one red cent. The only way you can make them give is to get them under some kind of emotional conviction. Then they’ll give for a while and pretty soon they quit giving.
There are gossipers, folks who’d rather gossip than go soulwinning. They’d rather sit around and hurt and malign and try to pull somebody down than do anything in the world. There are some slanderers. They love to slander people. They love to find out something that’s been said about somebody and spread it far and wide to slander them. There are some folks who have read their Bible every day last week. There are some folks who prayed every day last week. There are some folks who have given what God wanted them to give. There are some faithful people. There are some unfaithful people. There are some folks that haven’t been here in a while. There are some folks that don’t give a rip if their kids live, die, go to hell, grow up and smoke cigarettes, cuss, drink and destroy their lives in sin. They don’t give a rip because they don’t give a rip themselves, either.
That’s a lot of different groups of people, don’t you think? Now you guys that have it all figured it out, how would you approach this crowd? Come on up here. Give us your little dissertation on how you ought to do it. Everybody that has red American Baptist blood in them needs some preaching. They want some preaching, and they come to hear some preaching. You folks that didn’t, that’s a sign that you’re not right with God. Every real man in this building this morning wants his preacher to stand up and preach the Word of God. He doesn’t want to hear some dry lecture on something that doesn’t amount to a dime. He doesn’t want to hear some teaching or motivational talk. No, he wants to hear some preaching. He wants his kids to hear some preaching.
Let me show you how you ought to come. Look in the book of Luke, chapter four, verse 16. “And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,...” That’s the way you better approach it. You better not approach it like, “Well, I know so-and-so has a problem, and I think I can fix it,” and all that kind of stuff. “Preacher, he doesn’t understand them, and he doesn’t care about them.” You better approach this pulpit with the Spirit of the Lord upon you.
Watch this. “...The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.” (Luke 4:16-19) That’s the way you better approach it because no man can take care of the needs in this room this morning. God has ordained preaching. God knows how to use the preaching of His Word to meet every need in this room, and He does it through old-fashioned preaching. He doesn’t do it through plays and dramas. He doesn’t do it through choreography. He doesn’t do it through some lecture. We have lecturers come here and some of you don’t like it. We have some of those thrill seekers to come. How come they don’t come when Dr. Hyles is here plowing it down deep? Because they can’t stand preaching, but they don’t mind a little lecturing
John Wesley, when one of his lay preachers would come back, he’d say, “Is anybody convicted of sin by your preaching?” Then he’d say, “Is anybody mad because of your preaching?” If they answered in the negative he said, “Don’t come back.” That’s what we used to have. Real preaching is quick. It’s powerful. It’s sharp. Because that’s what the Word of God is. Real preaching disturbs people. It better disturb you. Real preaching awakens men to their need, regardless if they respond or not. Real preaching either drives people or draws people.
Real preaching has salt in it. Salt is pungent. I started to bring a little salt up here and throw it. Salt penetrates. Salt saves from corruption. You just do a little history work and find every movement that’s got away from salty preaching, corruption has now set in, and they don’t use the right Bible. They’ve replaced God’s Word with per-versions. They’ve taken the blood out of the songbooks, and lots of them don’t even sing the good old hymns anyway. They have a rock concert and sway back and forth while they sing one of those 7-11 choruses -- Seven words sung 11 times in a row.
There’s a bunch of so-called churches that don’t have the kind of service they ought to have for God anymore. Why? Because they took Bible preaching out, and they went to lecturing. We’ll get you a circuit to lecture on. Salt finds the sore. Salt makes it smart. Salt irritates, but it also cleanses. So did Elijah. So did John the Baptist. So did Isaiah. So did Paul. So did Peter. So did Mordecai Hamm. Real preaching searches and alarms people.
I sat there that Wednesday night and I heard that guy preach, and I got alarmed. I got scared. I said, “That guy means business.” He scared my socks off. Real preaching rebukes and scolds. Some of you folks are going to be in sad shape at the judgment seat of Christ when this is read to you. Turn to II Timothy 4:1. I’m talking about preaching. I’m not talking about lecturing. I’m not talking about teaching. There is a time to do that.
What’s those first two words? “I charge...” You guys that have ever been in the military, what’s that mean? Paul didn’t ask him to think about it. He didn’t say, “Tim, you consider this, son.” He gave him an order. “I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” (II Timothy 4:1-4)
I guarantee you, if the old fashioned Methodist preacher would have kept it up, that wouldn’t be true in his church today. Folks, did you read where the assistant pastor at Broadmoor Baptist Church said, “Non-Christian people are going to heaven.” Seventy-some percent of the folks in this city said, “You don’t have to be saved to go to heaven.” He agreed with it. He’s the assistant pastor of a Baptist church. Do you know why? Because he got away from exhortation and reproving and exhorting. He got away from all of that. He doesn’t even know what preaching is about. He doesn’t even know what salvation is about. Real preaching does not deal with vague generalities. “Well, I suppose everything’s okay and it could be right. I don’t even know. So what?” Real preaching is plain. Real preaching is sin convicting. Real preaching is sin destroying.
Now I had a lot of folks talk to me before I got right with God. None of it affected me like hearing real preaching from a real man of God. Yesterday morning a lady was telling a little bit about her husband. She was talking about how he was before he got saved. How come the Marines didn’t win him? How come some of your psychology books didn’t win him? How come the man got saved and is out knocking doors now? Because somebody preached to him. That’s what destroyed the sin in his life. That’s what destroyed the sin in my life and your life. See, real preaching individualizes the individual. It will point you out.
Here’s the problem. How come some of the folks in this room are growing and some are not? It isn’t God’s fault. I’m going to show you what it is. Turn to Hebrews chapter three. This scares me, and we see it manifested in this room. Look at verse seven. “Wherefore as...” Who saith? “...the Holy Ghost...” Not some wild-eyed, got something against you, mad at you, fundamental, Baptist preacher. Some of you, the Holy Ghost, is going to get you.
I was talking to a young man last week. He said, “Preacher, when I was wrong with God, I knew I was wrong with God.” I almost fell out of the chair. It’s a wonder he didn’t say, “Well, it’s my daddy’s fault. It was my momma’s fault, and I went to that Christian school and it was their fault.” He said, “I knew it was my fault, Preacher.”
I said, “It isn’t fun, is it?”
He said, “Oh, no.”
I said, “You’ve been everywhere, hadn’t you?”
He said, “Yeah,”
I said, “Where did you get away from the Holy Ghost?”
He said, “You can’t get away from Him. I’m tired of running.”
Some of you are just going to keep running. You’re going to keep running. I’m going to bring my stupid sign back out, and we’re going to give it to you, because that’s stupid. “Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice,” This is talking to Christians. This is not talking to the cigar sucking crowd. This is not talking to the Sodomite crowd. This is not talking to anybody but church folks. “Harden not your hearts,...” Did you ever notice that the sun melts butter, but hardens the clay? It’s the same with the Gospel. They’ll be folks walk out of this room harder than when they came in. This Bible says that one day you’re going to come to a screeching stop.
Everyone of you have said to your kids, “Why did you do that again? You knew I was going to spank you again.” Do you know what God is saying to some of you, folks? “Why are you doing this again?” Do you know what? You think you’re going to get away with it. There’s folks sitting in this building saying, “Well, you just wait till the right time. I’m going to get what I want. I’m going to do what I want” No, you’re not. God is going to get you.
Who do you think you are? You’re messing with a God this morning that’s got your breath in His hands. You’re messing with a God this morning that’s got everything just right, except when man comes along and messes it up so we can function. You don’t mess with God like that. He’s going to get tired of being long-suffering with you. I can show you that in the Bible. You can just harden your heart, and harden your heart, and harden your heart, until you’ve squandered your last chance. It doesn’t make any difference who is preaching. It isn’t going to do you any good to say, “Boy, that’s good,” and just sit there in your sin. That’s dumb, isn’t it?
Notice what He says, “Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years. Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways.” (Hebrews 3:8-10) If God was grieved with that generation, do you think He’s happy today, folks? “So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.)” (vs.11)
There are folks sitting here this morning. They have no rest. Ah, they smile a little fake smile. “How are you doing?” But they have no rest. Look at verse 12. What’s those first two words? “Take heed,...” What’s the third word? “...brethren,...” “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.”
Now if you have a real friend look at verse 13. “But...” do what? “...exhort...” “...one another...” how often? “...daily,...” That not just me. We ought to do that toward one another. “But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation. For some, when they had heard, did provoke: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses. But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness? And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that believed not? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.” (Hebrews 3:13-19)
Now look at chapter four, verse one. “Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.” We’re supposed to look at those people and say, “I don’t want that to happen to me.” “For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” (vs. 2)
It doesn’t make any difference if you like me or if you don’t like me. Now honestly, I wish you did. No one wants to be disliked. But you hear me, that’s not going to bother me one bit. Why should I let that bother me? It’s your problem, not mine.
Here’s what gets me. People create problems and then they get mad at me for trying to fix them. “Well preacher, he’s mad at me.” I’m not the one sucking cigarettes and dabbling in sin and worldliness, not right with God. What’s wrong with you? It isn’t me. I’m not the one putting on a fake show. What’s wrong with you?
Isn’t it amazing that the most popular preachers that come here are not lecturers? Have you ever see Dr. Hyles get up here and give a lecture? He’s coming in about a month. Walk up to him and ask him if he’ll give you a little lecture. He’ll give you a lecture. Have you ever heard Dr. Ron Gearis give a lecture? “I’m looking at you in your God given eyeball.” He’s one of our favorite preachers. Dr. Hyles is one of our favorite preachers here. How about this guy? “She got saved, and he got saved, and the dog got saved, and the water fountain got saved, and the roof got saved,” named Carl Hatch. He’s a real lecturer isn’t he? Isn’t it amazing that the old fellow has been beat up, car wreck a few years ago almost killed him over there in Pensacola, Florida. He’s still going. He’s one of our favorite preachers here. All these guys are real preachers. Here’s what it is. It’s given out. You take it or reject it. Folks, it isn’t my fault. It’s not your husband’s fault. It’s not your wife’s fault. It’s not your kid’s fault.
Paul said, “I was appointed...” a what? A preacher! I’m just doing what I was appointed to do. There is still a real, literal, burning hell. People really die and go there. Now no one wants anybody to die and go to hell, if you’ve got any sense. I would like for you to get saved and live for God and to have all the blessings that the Lord has for you. If you set a bad example in front of your kids and they turn out bad, that isn’t my fault. You’re walking over miles of preaching in this place. You’re walking over Carl Hatch’s preaching. You’re walking over Dr. Hyles’s preaching. You’re walking over Dr. Gearis’s preaching.
You had better wish that Brother Al would spank you. Because when God hits you, “Boom,” and the Holy Spirit begins to talk to you, “Boom,” you better hit the altar and get things right with Him. “Well, I’ll do it on my own.” You’re lying because your life hasn’t changed.
What this church needs is preaching. What this country needs is preaching. Old fashioned Holy Ghost empowered preaching of this old black Book, the King James Bible.