The apostolic preaching model
In his sermon on the day of Pentecost, the apostle Peter models the preaching experience for all posterity. Through studying this model, we learn that proclamation of the gospel must be:
Prophetic — This is what was spoken by the prophet Joel. v. 16
He took a text from Joel, illustrated it with two Psalms and established a Biblical basis for the happening of Pentecost. The prophetic element in preaching issues from the exposition of scripture.
Plain — Let this be known to you. v. 14
Peter did not make it difficult; he simply laid out the plain truth of Jesus’ incarnation, death, and resurrection.
Positive — This Jesus God has raised up. v. 32
Peter preached the Good News; our Lord is not dead, He is alive! The resurrection is where we find our positive note in preaching.
Personal — You have taken by lawless hands. v. 23
Apostolic preaching was in second person. So much of our preaching today is in first or third person plural; i.e., “we, they.” Peter calls upon the hearers to take personal responsibility for their actions.
Penetrating — Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart. v. 37
What happened next? Their hearts were cut. We have a word for that—
conviction. Conviction seems to be one of the lost words in our modern Christian vocabulary.
Persuasive — What shall we do? v. 37
Peter’s preaching caused men and women to ask how they might be saved. Preaching that is personal and penetrating leads people to ask, What does this mean? (v.12) and then, What should we do? (v. 37)
Pointed — Repent. v. 38
Peter clearly instructed his hearers that they must repent! His pointed proclamation was in a word — repent!
Pious — As many as the Lord our God will call. v. 39
By pious, we mean "God fearing.” Here is the realization that only God can do the convicting and the converting.
Persistent — With many other words, he testified and exhorted them. v. 40
Peter gave a gospel invitation, he pleaded for souls that day, …with many other words.
Productive — Then those who gladly received his word were baptized.. v. 41
Peter’s preaching was fruitful; about three thousand souls were saved that day.
And the result? Praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved. v. 47
For a complete treatment of this passage, see O. S. Hawkins’ book, GuideStones: Ancient Landmarks of Authenticity for the 21st Century Church.