Paul complimented the people of Thessalonica for accepting his message “for what it is: God’s word” (1 Thessalonians 2:13). Christians typically reserve the Bible for that tag: God’s Word. Many preachers, however, describe their sermons as God’s word, much like Paul did. When is a message God’s word, compared to a script written by a preacher or some other well-intended Christian?
That’s a bit like asking how the inspiration of the Bible compares to an inspiring book or a sermon. If God still inspires his people today, is his inspiration any less inspiring than it was 2,000 years ago? That’s hard to think about. Most Christians hold the Bible in a special zone of reverence. And if we consider the possibility that something our pastor says is as inspiring as what Paul wrote, that’s perhaps a little too jarring for many Christians today. Maybe a better approach would be to recognize that God still speaks through his people, whether it’s the pastor or our best friend’s mother. But anything from God will mesh with the teachings of Jesus, since Jesus taught, “The Father and I are one” (John 10:30, NLT).