I have always believed that preaching is never easy, it is spiritual warfare.
The moment that a preacher prays humbly for the right sermon to write, the devils are opposing him. While preparing the sermon, hundreds more attack him, and circumstances start to play hard against him. The more the preacher tries hard to live out his message, his own weaknesses insult him, and the devil condemn him, ‘Who are you, unholy one to speak of the Holy Things of God?’ And of course, at the very moment of the actual preaching of the sermon, all heaven and hell are watching, and the destiny of souls hang on the balance.
That is how weighty true preaching is, and the above statements are not exaggerations. Preaching is a divine task. More accurately, preaching is divine warfare.
That is why Paul in his exhortation to the Ephesians reminds them that the Christian life is a battle, and to be successful they have to take actions both defensively and offensively. And interesting to note is that the powerful penetration of the Word by the means of preaching is achieved by prayers – collective prayers:
“And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the
Spirit, which is the word of God:
Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the
Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance
and supplication for all saints;
And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I
may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery
of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.” (Ephesians 6:17-20)
And preaching is warfare, and is always won with prayer. We can do so much in preaching by our talent and oratory skills, but eternal results could never be earned by these alone – preaching only has the power to transform lives by the power of the Holy Spirit – given by Grace in partnership with our prayers. That is how the Spiritual Warfare of Preaching is done.