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Why Expositional Preaching? (Part 2)

This is the second post on expositional preaching, part of our "Why do we...?" series.

We have established what expositional preaching is - preaching consecutively through books of the Bible, letting the point of the passage be the point of the message. But maybe you are still left with the question, “What are the reasons for this approach? What is the justification for putting such an emphasis on expositional preaching?” Let me offer a few reasons why we believe this is the best and biblical approach to preaching.

First, expositional preaching is the clearest way to submit ourselves to the authority of Scripture

Our Statement of Faith affirms the following concerning the Word of God:

The Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments were given by inspiration of God. Therefore, all scripture is authoritative, infallible and inerrant. The Scriptures are the only sufficient rule for faith and practice.

That is a wonderfully clear statement on the authority of Scripture. But how do we make an equally clear statement on Sunday morning? By preaching expositional sermons. When we preach consecutively through books of the Bible, we are demonstrating that we believe in the authority of Scripture.

Furthermore, expositional preaching reminds the congregation that the pastors’ authority within the church is derived from Scripture. The pastors have authority only as the shepherd the congregation with the Word of God. By preaching expositionally, it is a tangible reminder to the church that Jesus is the Chief Shepherd, and those who shepherd the congregation now do so with a delegated authority.

Second, expositional preaching gives Jesus’ voice the priority

Christians at Midtown Baptist belong to Jesus Christ; they are his sheep. And what they need most is to hear the voice of the Good Shepherd, as he guides through the storms and valleys of the Christian life. When we preach expositional sermons, we highlight the voice of Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd. We allow his voice, as contained in all of Scripture, to be the priority and the focus when we gather together. Such preaching minimizes the voice of the preacher and amplifies the voice of the Lord Jesus.

Third, expositional preaching safeguards the pastor from preaching his own ideas or agenda

It is a great temptation for a pastor to preach simply what he thinks is important, or to focus on those ideas that interest him. Expositional preaching safeguards the pastor (and the congregation) from this temptation. When we preach consecutively through books of the Bible, we are constrained, as it were, to preach what the passage says (not what we want to say!).

Tomorrow, we will conclude by noting some of the benefits of expositional preaching.

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