MINISTRY OF PROCLAMATION
By Bishop Randy Barnett
TEACHING AND PREACHING
Jesus is the Head of the Church and what a wonderful thing He has created! As He has done with all His creation, He has
designed His Church according to an intricate and detailed plan, and that divine plan is without fault or failure. Our
responsibility is to understand His design, to follow His plan, and thereby be ultimately successful in fulfilling His plan for
Within His plan is the setting apart a certain group of persons called to deliver His Word. These are His fivefold ministers;
they are also called Elders or overseers. (Ephesians 4:11) Their primary responsibility is to care for and feed His sheep.
(John 21:15) “Feeding the sheep” is simply the dispensing of Truth to bring understanding of the Word of God to His
people. This dispensing is accomplished through what I will call in this study “proclamation”.
Proclamation is the ministry by Elders to the saints of imparting
insights into the Word of God through teaching and preaching.
I purposely avoid the terms teaching and preaching, for the most part, because I want the emphasis not to be so much on
the delivery itself or on the style of pulpit ministry. But I do want to elaborate on these two functions at this point.
Teaching and preaching are usually seen as simply two different styles of pulpit ministry; however, I believe the
difference is not just in the style of delivery but rather in the purpose for that particular ministry occasion.
Teaching has as its primary aim the development of knowledge in the hearer. In the Christian pulpit this knowledge is, of
course, directly from the Bible not from the mind of the speaker. We might also call this instruction in righteousness.
Correct teaching lays biblical precept upon precept, and is therefore a systematic building process of individual truths
designed to establish the overall truth of the instruction. This is why one will usually see three or four sub points in the
teaching which all point to the one final conclusion. Teaching helps to answer the basic questions in the minds of the
hearers such as “Why?”, “Who?”, “When?” etc. Because of this, the truth at hand is more strongly established because
of the brick-upon-brick approach to learning. This form of proclamation may seem to some people to be less entertaining
or less dynamic than preaching; however, it serves it purpose regardless of its entertainment factor.
Preaching has as its primary aim the motivation of people to follow the plan of God for their lives and to produce His will.
For example, when the evangelist preaches to the sinner, his heart is moved to respond to the power of the Gospel. The
proclaimer has motivated the hearer to fulfill the plan of God for his life. When the pastor preaches a strong message of
repentance from the sin of stinginess, for example, the Holy Spirit is motivating the saints to fulfill the plan of God for
their lives to be generous and thereby prosperous as a result of their generosity. In each case, you can see that the tool
of preaching is used to motivate people to do what God desires. Preaching usually will not utilize precept upon precept
instruction as is the case with teaching, but rather a fervent appeal to move the souls of the hearers by reason and by
emotion through the anointing of the Holy Spirit.
I encourage men and women of God to avoid placing themselves in either box, whether a preacher or a teacher. In fact,
oftentimes a pulpit session will be a combination of these two tools. I find this to be true in my own ministry. I will move in
and out of teaching and preaching depending upon what the Holy Spirit needs to accomplish in that instant. This is why I
tend to avoid using the terms teaching or preaching but have chosen rather to use the term proclamation because that is
what each of these tools does – it proclaims Truth.
The aim of proclamation is always the same; it is…
To release Truth into the earth in order to fulfill
the plan of God and to produce His will.
The goal of this manual is to increase the effectiveness of pulpit ministry for the servant of God and to help him (not
gender specific) fulfill his calling from God. It is important to remember that the most important element in effective
proclamation is relying heavily upon the anointing of the Holy Spirit. It is vital to remember that He is your guide, He is
your Helper, (John 16:13) He is your Source of power in the pulpit. (I Corinthians 2:1-5) The Holy Spirit is the key to your
success in ministry; that is why a clear understanding of the word “anointing” is imperative for the minister of the Gospel.
Simply stated, the anointing is the power of God working in and through the one whom He has divinely set in place for a
specific purpose or task. The anointing enables the called one to perform what he otherwise could certainly not
accomplish in his own strength, intelligence, and abilities. The anointing of the Holy Spirit is the power source to do what
you are called to do, my fellow Elder, which is to proclaim Truth. Apart from God’s anointing upon your life, any sermon or
teaching would be merely a carnal act of public speaking. Jesus was Himself anointed by the Holy Spirit and it was this
anointing that enabled Him to perform miracles, to draw the masses to hear the message of the Kingdom, and to remain
on course even to the point of death. The anointing is that mystical power of God that elevates the natural [you] into the
supernatural. It empowers each word during your proclamation so that it accomplishes what God intends for it to do in the
lives of the hearers. Trust the anointing that is upon you and the faithfulness of God will never let you down.
As is the case with any discipline, the ministry of proclamation is a learned art form. Proper instruction in the ministry of
proclamation will help “clear away the debris” that otherwise would certainly hinder both the delivery as well as the
reception of Truth that is proclaimed. This we will attempt to accomplish in this instruction manual. I believe that solid
training and instruction coupled with the anointing of the Holy Spirit is the winning combination in pulpit ministry.
You are asked to approach this instruction with an open heart and an open mind. You might be stretched somewhat, so
you must be open to instruction, to correction, and to change. Realize that God is always taking each of us higher and
higher into greater levels of understanding and into more refined methods of delivery and ministry. In this way you are
assured you will fulfill His calling on your life. It is important to remember that this will be a process of growth. The humble
servant of God will rise high; the one who feels he knows it all, will not progress higher than he is presently and will
slowly slide backward. Be that teachable student of God.
THE MESSAGE IS A BEAUTIFUL WORK OF ART.
Visualize if you will, a blank artist’s canvas. That blank canvas is what your message looks like in the spirit just prior to
delivering it. As you speak, each word you proclaim is a stroke by the Master Artist Jesus on that blank canvas which is
the heart of every hearer who sits before you. Each word is vitally important to the overall message just as each paint
stroke is to the painting. The artist will know when his masterpiece is finished, as will the adept proclaimer who is led by
the Spirit. That is when the will of God has been done as far as you are concerned. Remember: your responsibility is not
to get the people to receive your message. First of all, it was not “your message” but rather God’s message, and He is
responsible for His words once they are delivered. (Isaiah 55:11)
THE FOUNDATION FOR THIS TEACHING.
I take as the foundation of this manual II Timothy 3:16-17:
“All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for
doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,
that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped
for every good work.”
As this verse states we will use the Word of God as our primary resource, for indeed the Bible is Truth. (John 17:17) We
will rely upon the Word to build us into complete and thoroughly equipped servants of God who can proclaim Truth
accurately and powerfully and thereby advance the Kingdom of God to the glory of Jesus Christ our Lord.
Questions on Lesson #1
1. Who is the Head of the Church?
2. Who has the Head of the Church called to proclaim Truth? What verse(s) validate your response?
3. Define our term “ministry of proclamation.”
4. What is the aim of proclamation?
5. The ministry of proclamation is accomplished through two primary means, what are they?
6. How would you describe the difference between teaching and preaching?
7. Explain the word “anointing.”
8. Explain how to balance the concept of God’s anointing upon you to minister and the need you have for
instruction in the ministry of proclamation.
9. Explain how improper pulpit techniques or personal idiosyncrasies might hinder or even obstruct the
deliver of Truth through the man of God.
10. Re-read our foundational scripture verse II Timothy 3:16-17. Explain briefly the four purposes for Holy
Scripture as stated there:
a) Profitable for teaching
b) For reproof
c) For correction
d) For instruction in righteousness