Expository Preaching

 Some people think that the only way exposition can happen is by teaching through books of the Bible verse by verse? 

They’re wrong.

I do expository preaching every time I teach from Scripture because exposition is what is happening.

Sound confusing? Let me explain.

Defining expository preaching

A recognized master of expository preaching defined it this way – 

“Expository preaching is the Spirit-empowered explanation and proclamation of the text of God’s Word, with due regard to the historical, contextual, grammatical and doctrinal significance of the given passage, with the specific object of invoking a Christ-transforming response.”

God’s people are blessed where this is happening (and there are fewer places than most realize).

Look beyond the surface

Don’t assume all is well simply because your pastor teaches through books of the Bible. A true test of what is actually happening is found in how the Church follows the Scripture, particularly in its leadership structure and fellowship.

There’s no sense going through the motions of preaching if the Church doesn’t actually follow the Scripture on important matters like leadership and Church government. (see – Leadership in the local church )

Final thoughts

I’ve presented a number of book studies from our pulpit and will likely do more in the future. But I’ve also presented many theological studies. All well-known expositors have done a mix of biblical and theological studies as well as individual book studies.

Many times the person who says he prefers expository preaching simply means a book study vs. a theological study. But this way of thinking does not understand the meaning of exposition. And expository topical studies are actually harder when done well. They require much broader exegetical knowledge than individual book studies.

The important thing for all who teach Scripture is a commitment to do the hard exegetical work no matter what you’re teaching. Be cautious about Churches or leaders who posture as superior for their approach to expositional preaching.

I’ve heard book studies and topical sermons that lacked careful exegetical work. Based on Olford’s definition, they lacked “due regard to the historical, contextual, grammatical and doctrinal significance of the given passage/s.”

Steve Cornell

See also: 10 Attributes of good preaching

This entry was posted in Church Leadership, Church membership, Elders, Expository Preaching, Leadership, Pastors, Preaching and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Expository Preaching

  1. Brian Yu says:

    I like to tell people that my task as a preacher is to “expose” (hence, “expository preaching”) what God has already said. I don’t have to add anything to what He’s already revealed to us in the Bible. I wish more preachers would consider expository preaching. And you’re right, I find that it’s more work and prone to difficulty (and error) when doing a topical study (though I don’t dismiss it as a preaching method with some value).

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