For a long time now I have been committed to teaching for application.Â Â I’ve clung to the principle that teaching (and preaching) has the potential to impact people by changing their lives.Â Â I still believe that, and it’s part of the mystery of the will and wiles of God to use teaching, speaking, and preaching to that end.
But a host of things are leading me to change how I think about application. It is not as simple as teach a principle, illustrate it, and provide application (can I recommend to you these three action steps?) That might bring clarity, but it’s usually powerless for conviction and thus change.Â Â It presupposes a simplistic view of how human beings work and gives too much priority to the will. I “know” what to do, but I won’t always do that. Why? Many reasons, but let me focus on just one.