How can I preach to people who are much older than me?
- Preach the gospel. All people of all ages need to hear and believe and be reminded of God’s saving work in Christ.
- Preach about the sovereignty of God. All people of all ages need to be reminded that God alone rules over every circumstance of our lives.
- Preach about suffering. Age intensifies the suffering we feel and see, whether it’s the pain of regret, aching joints, or the loss of loved ones. Therefore it is crucial to remind your people that God intends for suffering to conform us to the image of his Son (Romans 8:18Romans 8:30; Hebrews 12:5-11).
- Preach about idolatry. Regardless of age, all people are tempted to worship false gods instead of the true God. If you’re a young pastor, learn about the idols of your older church members and lovingly expose them.
- Preach about the believer’s new identity in Christ. We who are in Christ easily forget that our identity does not come from our job, home, age, family, or appearance. Finding one’s identity in Christ will relieve the pain of regret, cut the root of pride, dry up the miry bog of despondency, clear up midlife confusion, and produce eternally significant fruit.
- Preach about heaven. When we are preoccupied with our eternal hope, our earthly sorrows and struggles are put in perspective.
(This material has been adapted from Israel Hass’s article, “Preaching Up: Applying the Word of God to Midlife and Beyond”)
Find more great resources for church health from Mark Dever and 9Marks Ministries at www.9marks.org