Thursday, August 21, 2008

Recovering True Biblical Preaching
I have been very disappointed in the last few months over the quality of preaching I have heard in several worship services I have been able to attend. By and large, I have heard comedians, cheerleaders, pychologists, and moralists - but on only one occasion did I actually hear a man take God's Word and expound it. What's really sad, is that all of these preachers would affirm the Bible as the inerrant, infallible Word of God. But it has been painfully obvious that their confession over the Bible's divine origin and authority is not a conviction when they enter the pulpit.
For me as a pastor and preacher of God's Word, the exposure to such pathetic, pragmatic, man-centered, ear-tickling, entertainment-driven preaching has only reaffirmed my already strong conviction and commitment to biblical preaching. To be more specific: I am more earnest and passionate about expository preaching.
By definition, expository preaching is "the presentation of biblical truth, derived from and transmitted through a historical, grammatical, Spirit-guided study of a passage in its context, which the Holy Spirit applies first to the life of the preacher and then through him to his congregation" (Haddon W. Robinson). Regarding the preacher who "expounds" God's Word, Iain Murray once described him in this way:
The expository preacher is not one who 'shares his studies' with others, he is an ambassador and a messenger, authoritatively delivering the Word of God to men. Such preaching presents a text, then, with that text in sight throughout, there is deduction, argument and appeal, the whole making up a message which bears the authority of Scripture itself.
Would to God that every pulpit in America represented this kind of preaching! For me, this has become a regular part of my praying - that God, in His mercy, would restore the faithful expositon of His Word in the pulpits that fill His church. I am convinced from Scripture and history that this is where we will see the reformation and revival the church in America needs so desperately. But at this present hour, the cryptic words of Os Guiness loom over many churches: " all my studies I have yet to see a Western society where the church pews are so full and the sermons so empty." O God, restore the true preaching of Your Word!

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