Peter Davids makes a great point in the Introduction to his commentary on the letters of Jude and Second Peter (Eerdmans: Grand Rapids, 2006):
For many since the Reformation Paul’s letters have been more central than the Gospels. They have been a canon within a canon (1).
I’m not sure what Davids’ background is but this observation is supported by the fact that the majority of Lutheran pastors (not sure about other heirs of the Reformation) over the last century have preached on the appointed Epistle for the Day rather than the Gospel, as was Luther’s recommendation. I can’t help but think that this lack of focus on Jesus and His teaching in the main sermons of the Church has taken its toll over the years on people’s ability to see how doctrine is connected to Christ. I think there is actually a big disconnect in the general piety of church goers (at least, Lutheran ones) between Jesus and the Sacraments, Jesus and the Liturgy, Jesus and ________ you fill in the blank.
That’s not to say that I am against preaching on Epistles or even the Old Testament. The Old Testament needs to “take on flesh” by our preaching of Christ, but this was meant to be done at other times of the week. Of course, we all know how well it would go over to tell people to come to church more than once a week! I am lucky to get a handful for midweek services during Advent and Lent.