4 Suggestions for Listening to Podcasts June 14, 2021

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“Have you ever thought about doing a podcast?” The young lady who first asked me this question was a missionary in China and interested in one thing – being able to access Bible content anywhere, anytime. She was used of God to plant the seed in my own mind. (At the time, I did not even know what a podcast was!) That was almost five years ago and I have discovered that the podcast platform is a powerful way to communicate truth to those you may never see.

I have been amazed at the reach that a simple podcast can have. We have just crossed 2 million downloads of Enjoying the Journey and continue to hear from people around the world who are accessing the messages. Only God knows its eternal impact and we are truly grateful.

Like any other means, the technology can be used for good or for evil. There is nothing inherently sinful or spiritual about media; its benefit depends on the message. As a preacher I know that I need preaching and teaching myself and podcasts make good content readily available. However, we must also be on guard because there is plenty of content now accessible that is unedifying at best and destructive at worst.

A young man recently pointed out to me that many in his generation prefer to listen to content than to read it. To this I say: do both! There is no substitute for reading and the way that it forces the mind to reason and ponder. It is dangerous to become purely a spectator seeking entertainment.

Permit me to share four suggestions for listening to podcasts:

  1. Measure all content by truth. I am specifically thinking of Christian content but for a believer the Word of God is the “plumb line” by which we should measure every thing. We must always discern between man’s opinion and God’s truth. Empty talk will never make for a full life. The chief question is: does it edify? If our words are more about tearing down than building up we will never develop strong Christians. “Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another” (Rom. 14:19).
  2. Guard your spirit. Paul discusses the difference between the letter of the law and the spirit of the law in 2 Corinthians 3. It is possible that true messages are being shared but the spirit of the messenger is not the Spirit of Christ. Remember that Jesus came “full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). Podcasts do not just convey content – they promote a spirit. Refuse to listen to anything or anyone that leads your mind and heart to operate in the flesh instead of the Spirit (Proverbs 4:23). Guard your heart by guarding the gates.
  3. Choose carefully. With the proliferation of podcasts it is impossible to listen to them all! Many things are good; some things are best. Ask people that you trust for recommendations and listen discerningly.
  4. Do not allow any podcast to take the place of your own time in the Word. While a podcast may be a good supplement to your Bible time or your family devotions, it is a mistake to allow someone else’s meditations to keep you from personally meditating in the Scriptures. Likewise, no one should substitute for the preaching of your own local pastor and the regular study of God’s Word with your church family.

I am grateful for those who listen to our daily podcast and grateful for those who have ministered to me. Use the tools but refuse to let them dominate your life. In the end it is not the many voices that matter, it is the Word.

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4 Comments

  1. Christopher P Crowe on June 15, 2021 at 6:15 AM

    Amen Brother Pauley. We would be aimless, blind, and hopeless without the Word; instead we have the opposite (purpose, vision, and hope) – John 1:14, 16, & 34.

    • scottpauley on July 2, 2021 at 2:24 PM

      Amen.

  2. JP on June 17, 2021 at 10:23 PM

    I would love to know of any podcasts you listen to. Yours is one I listen to often and very much enjoy, but the car ride is long.

    Thank you!

    • scottpauley on July 2, 2021 at 2:24 PM

      Probably the one I listen to more frequently than any others is Love Worth Finding with Adrian Rogers. I am always helped by his preaching.

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