Rattles and baubles
Do not judge a minister . . .

(Thomas Brooks, "The Unsearchable Riches of Christ")

"Consider carefully what you hear." Mark 4:24


It is sad to see how many preachers in our days, make
it their business to enrich men's heads with high, empty,
airy notions; instead of enriching their souls with saving
truths.

Fix yourself under that man's ministry, who makes it his
business, his work to enrich the soul, to win the soul, and
to build up the soul; not to tickle the ear, or please the
fancy. This age is full of such light, delirious soulsówho
dislike everythingóbut what is empty and airy.

Do not judge a minister . . .
  by his voice, nor
  by the multitude who follow him, nor
  by his affected tone, nor
  by his rhetoric and flashes of wit;
but by the holiness, heavenliness, and spiritualness
of his teaching. Many ministers are like empty orators,
who have a flood of wordsóbut a drop of matter.

Some preachers affect rhetorical strains; they seek abstrusities,
and love to hover and soar aloft in dark and cloudy expressions,
and so shoot their arrows over their hearers' headsóinstead of
bettering their hearers' hearts. Mirthful things in a sermon
are only for men to gaze upon and admire. He is the best
preacher
, not who tickles the earóbut who breaks the heart.

"My message and my preaching were not with wise and
 persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's
 power, so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom,
 but on God's power." 1 Corinthians 2:4-5