|Battle Creek, Michigan|
The apostle Paul confessed that he was not a great preacher. He wrote:
I may indeed be untrained as a speaker, but I do have knowledge. (2 Cor. 11:6)
When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. (1 Cor. 2:1)
People fell asleep and died while listening to Paul.
Seated in a window was a young man named , who was sinking into a deep sleep as Paul talked on and on. When he was sound asleep, he fell to the ground from the third story and was picked up dead. (Acts 20:9. For the full story see here.)
Early church history describes Paul as "a man little of stature, thin-haired upon the head, crooked in the legs, of good state of body, with eyebrows joining, and nose somewhat hooked, full of grace: for sometimes he appeared like a man, and sometimes he had the face of an angel." ("The Acts of Paul," II.3. For more see Ben Witherington, The Paul Quest, p. 42 ff., "Analyzing Paul's Appearance.")
If the apostle Paul was alive today, and advertised as a conference speaker, who would go? His promo-photo would look like Sesame Street's "Bert."
Paul knew that all he brought to the preaching table was the message of the good news of Jesus, and the power of God. He writes: