The Importance of Expository Preaching of the Word

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          In a world of changing genders, morals and teachings, it is no wonder the younger generation has taken what was clearly black and white and blurred it into a gray. Just a few short months ago a boy was a boy and a girl was a girl. That was pretty evident based upon science and anatomy. However, science has become feelings and morality has become opinion. There has never been a greater need for expository preaching of the Bible than today. 
         Before we can discuss this matter we must first discuss what expository means. The definition of expository is, “intended to explain or describe something.” A synonym of expository is explanatory. Basically expository preaching means explaining and describing the Bible as it was originally written. Now that sounds rather simple but as you begin to really study a speaker you will begin to see that many, if not most, do not preach the Bible in an expositional manner. Below I have listed three reasons for the importance of expository preaching. 
A Church Lives or Dies by the Preaching of God’s Word
         A church lives or dies by the preaching of the Word because the Word is not only the voice of God but in a supernatural way, is God. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.”  “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:1-2, 14  John tells us here that the Word actually became flesh and dwelt among us. The Word is Jesus! Jesus who’s words made the lame walk, the blind see, the deaf hear and the dead rise. There is power in His words and if a church continually and consistently preach and study the Bible they will have the same power, peace and wisdom that fell upon the disciples following Jesus. 
        Just like a scuba diver that is completely and totally reliant on their tanks of air for survival, so the church should cling with the same desperation to the Bible. There can be no option here because it is truly a matter of life and death. Jesus is life and if a church pastor preaches the Bible in a way that is clear and explains God’s Word precisely, that church will live! However if a preacher does not preach in a clear way and refuses to explain God’s Word, that church will die. Unholy teachings and practices will begin to creep in, members will slowly slink back into the trap of sin and as a tree with no water begins to wilt, so the church who does not whole heartily follow the Bible will begin to do the same. “Blessed is the man, who trusts in the Lord, and whose hope is the Lord. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes; but its leaf will be green, and will not be anxious in the year of drought, nor will cease from yielding fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8 
        Remember a tree is only as strong as the water around it. Jesus is the true living water and without His Word daily saturating His church it will wither and die. It is not a choice, it is an absolute. Pastors must make expository preaching a daily pattern in the life of their church family.  
If the Core of the Message is the Bible, than God is Truly Speaking to His People
             Let’s be honest, everyone wants to hear from God and know His purpose for their life. The questions of, “Why am I here?” “What is my purpose?” “What does God have planned for me?” are all questions we have asked. Sometimes we long for the Moses on the mountain experience where God is speaking through a burning  bush or a fiery whirlwind. Sometimes God will speak through a powerful experience like this but in reality God has given us His greatest voice that Moses would have loved to experience, His Word in written form. Moses was used to create this masterpiece of God’s voice but he did not see the completion of it. There is no greater revelation of God than His most perfect Word. Make no mistake reader, the words you read in your Bible were not man’s words. They are God’s and are as real and powerful today as when they were first written. “And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts; knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” 2 Peter 1:19-21 This is reconfirmed in 2 Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,…” The Greek for “all scripture is given by inspiration of God” can also be translated as God breathed or Theopneustos. This literally means as a ship’s sail is pushed by the wind, so the writers of the Bible were pushed by the Spirit of God. 
         Since the scripture’s clearly inspired by God, is their a greater way to hear God’s voice? Certainly not.  If you want to hear God’s voice, delve into His most Holy Word. Things become very clear in life when you are in touch with the life creator. Decisions needed to be made become much simpler when the big picture is in focus. When we want to learn about someone in history we must read letters, documents and personal diaries about those people in order to understand them on a personal level. God has done just that! But instead of some old textbook, God has given us His personal love letter to us so that we may know Him on a very personal level. On top of that we as Christians also have God’s Spirit dwelling in us who constantly gives us wisdom, understanding and a passion for God’s Word that cannot be quenched. God wrote His Words down so that we can read them again and again and again until they are inscribed on our hearts. “Your Word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You. Psalm 119:11
          This being said, pastors have a tremendous responsibility to preach the Word of God and to keep it the core of their message. There is a current movement among some churches and denominations that are pushing relationships more than Biblical teaching. Telling the church in order to grow they must relate with the world in order to reach it. In order to do this churches must tone down the Bible and “relate” to people more. This is a terrible teaching that will destroy the church. Jesus didn’t save the world by acting like it. He rejected every worldly teaching, which made him very unpopular, because He was called to a heavenly path not a worldly one. To many pastors make the core of their message a funny story, testimony or just one of their points. Now don’t get me wrong, they use scripture to back up their points or stories but at the end of the day the core of the entire message is a sinful man’s point. That will only end in failure. Biblical expository preaching has the scriptures, God’s Holy Word, at the core and then pulls the stories, points and testimonies from that. Therefore the power of the message is not what man thinks but rather what God knows! Nehemiah 8:1-12 talks about Ezra the priest opening the law and reading from morning to midday and the people were overwhelmed by the power of God because of the scriptures! No message, no stories, no power point, no fancy building etc… Just opening the law and reading brought the presence of God down on an entire nation! That is the same power preachers have in the Bible! We just need to get out of the way! 
          Funny jokes, games, testimonies and conversations, although helpful at times, never saved me from my sins, showed me salvation in Jesus or helped me fight temptation. Only the Word of God can do that. Reader, remember my first point, the church will live or die by the preaching of God’s Word. Is your Church leadership keeping God’s Word at the core of their message? Is it the focal point of your entire ministry? If it isn’t, you could be dying. 
In Order to Save Souls, the Bible Must be Preached
          “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?….So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Romans 8:14,17  Scripture is clear, people can’t call on someone they have never heard of, they will never hear unless a preacher is sent and faith only comes from hearing and hearing from the word of God. The only way lost souls can be saved from eternal separation from God is by preaching the word. I’m not sure what pastor said this quote but it is one of the best I’ve heard on preaching. “If there was more Hell preached from the pulpit, there would be a lot less on the streets.” Anonymous. The job of a preacher is to preach the word of God all the times! All of its truths, all of its convictions, all of its morality and all of its theology. If we want to reach the lost generations we must preach the one life line they have, God’s Word. There will be times when people will not even want to hear the Word preached. The Bible says to preach even harder in those times! “Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” 2 Timothy 4:2-5
        Paul tells the young pastor Timothy to preach the word at all times and all seasons! Preach when people want to hear and preach it when they don’t! The reason we must preach the Bible is for two main reasons. Either people will hear the gospel, repent of their sins and become born again believers in Christ Jesus or they will reject the gospel and have no excuse for the judgement to come. They will be found guilty of their sin and cast away from the presence of God. Our job as preachers is to tell the truth of God! We do that by preaching the Bible in an expository manner that is clear and candid for all hearers in order that they may make an eternal choice to follow Jesus or reject Him. Christians, our job is not to save souls, that is Christ’s job, our job is to tell them by using God’s Word. We are all called to be a preacher of the good news!
           I hope this article has been helpful to you my brothers and sisters in Christ! Use this information to understand the importance of expository preaching and feel free to share it with anyone who needs it! The Lazarus Design’s goal is to preach the Word of God so the dead may rise and the church of God may be equipped for every good work! May God bless you and keep you as you run the race toward Jesus!
            Your brother in Christ
Jacob Rowe
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