There are all kinds of ways for a pastor to help his people see the value of caring and visiting those who are sick, afflicted, and dying. The best place to start is through the public preaching of God’s Word in the main public gathering of the church.
As you are committed to preaching the Bible, look for those points of application that serve as exhortations to love, care, and serve the afflicted in your church. Regardless where in the Bible you are preaching that particular week, you will find a sovereign God who is ruling over the affliction and suffering of people. You will see God’s glory displayed in his people caring for those in need for the sake of the gospel. This is one reason why expositional preaching is the most helpful steady diet for a local church. As you preach through books of the Bible, you are more likely to be confronted with texts that allow this type of instruction.
However, there is nothing wrong with making this topic the basis for a short sermon series when it would seem appropriate. Regardless of how you teach your congregation about visiting the sick—whether through a short sermon series or through regular application in your expositional sermons—the preaching of the Word of God is what gives life to the church, and it is where we are able to exhort with authority what is most important to the entire body.
Show the care of the sick and afflicted as a priority by exhorting through public preaching. On a future post, we will consider how to train our people through publicly praying in the service in a way that is helpful and empowers them to go and serve.