Building on a post I introduced last week from Andrew Fuller‘s sermon “Spiritual Knowledge and Love Necessary for the Ministry” (again, available as a free PDF if you email me), I wanted to show you how Fuller compels ministers to act by wrapping up this first section. A quick reminder: under the first heading Fuller is helping us see that in the great work of preaching the Gospel, we need to understand the character of God, Christ, as Mediator, human nature as God intended, human nature depraved and finally how human nature is sanctified by the Spirit. It’s so easy for many pastors to say “Yes” to this. Fuller feels this and right at this moment, says:
“You will need also, my brother, a heart warmed with Divine things, or you will never be ‘a burning and a shining light.’ When we are thinking or preaching, we need to burn, as well as shine. When we study, we may rack our brains, and form plans; but unless ‘our hearts burn within us,’ all will be a mere skeleton–our thoughts mere bones; whatever be their number, they will be all dry–very dry; and if we do not feel what we say, our preaching will be poor dead work. Affected zeal will not do. A gilded fire may shine, but it will not warm. We may smite with the hand, and stamp with the foot, and throw ourselves into violent agitations; but if we feel not, it is not likely the people will–unless, indeed, it be a feeling of disgust. But suppose there be no affectation, nor any deficiency of good and sound doctrine; yet if in our work we feel no inward satisfaction, we shall resemble a millstone–preparing food for others, the value of which we are unable to appreciate ourselves. Indeed, without feeling, we shall be incapable of preaching any truth or of inculcating any duty aright. How can we display the evil of sin, the love of Christ, or any other important truth, unless we feel it? How can we preach against sin, without feeling a holy indignation against it? It is this that will cause us, while we denounce sin, to weep over the sinner. Otherwise, we may deal in flings and personalities; but these will only irritate; they will never reclaim. O! if ever we do any good in our work, it must be the effect of love to God and love to men–love to the souls of men, while we detest, and expose, and denounce their sins. How could Paul have pursued his work with the ardour and intenseness which he manifested, if his heart and not burned with holy love” 
Sorry about the long quote there, but it is so needed even in our day and age. The reason we don’t preach with power is due, in part, to not having our own hearts affected by spiritual life. So, what Fuller is calling us to here isn’t just some fakity emotional thing. He’s calling us to have our hearts so burn as we consider the realities we preach that we do, indeed, burn AND shine. I can tell the difference in my own preaching when my heart is affected by what I’m preaching and when it’s not (and, obviously, Fuller’s point is the people I serve can tell this too). There are many applications but here’s a couple of summaries:
For Pastors: wrestle with truth until you burn and have something to preach, then, unleash.
For Church People: pray that your pastor’s heart would be affected by his study.
I have one more insight from this sermon that really affected me, coming soon…
 Andrew Gunton Fuller, “Knowledge and Love Essential To Ministry” in The Complete Works of Andrew Fuller: Memoirs, Sermons, Etc., ed. Joseph Belcher, vol. 1 (Harrisonburg, VA: Sprinkle Publications, 1988), 480-481.