(3) For our appeal does not spring from error or impurity or any attempt to deceive, (4) but just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts. (5) For we never came with words of flattery, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed--God is witness. (6) Nor did we seek glory from people, whether from you or from others, though we could have made demands as apostles of Christ.
Christians have been entrusted with the gospel. Since the gospel is the gospel of God and not our own gospel, the preaching of the gospel demands that we please God, and not man.
The problem with many preachers is that they preach to fill seats and not to save souls. This leads to all kinds of preaching that is not gospel driven, but rather aimed at flattering people. What so many preachers have forgotten is that a filled seat does not translate automatically to a saved heart.
If our preaching of the gospel is not the preaching of the true gospel of God, we simply will not see the salvation of people but rather the alteration of people. This is accomplished by all kinds of programmes. People are altered, like suits are altered, all the time. Programmes like Alcoholics Anonymous, and even other religions do this all the time! We do not preach a self-help programme!
However, only the true preaching of the gospel can truly bring the message of salvation to people. People driven preaching brings more people, but it saves no one! It usually means that the natural offensiveness of the gospel is watered down to make the message palatable to the world, ending up with a gospel that does not save, but rather strokes the ego of men.
We do not preach the gospel to make people feel better, i.e. pleasing them, but we preach the gospel so that mankind can understand their "lostness" without Christ, and how they fall short of the holy standards of God. We tell people they deserve hell, however, in Christ there is a Saviour, One that has paid the penalty of sin, One that made propitiation by His blood before a holy God. We tell them that without Christ they are lost, and they will not see the face of God after death.
We do not pander to the philosophies of this life, nor the psychological drivel sold to us daily in magazines and newspapers. Neither do we follow the latest church-growth fad to fill our pews.
No, we preach the gospel to please God, and God alone!