Why should a pastor preach expositionally?
A pastor should preach expositionally because God works through God’s word. God speaking is God acting.*
God created by his Word (Genesis 1:3; Psalms 33:6), and he recreates us by his Word (2 Corinthians 4:5-6).
God called Abraham to himself by his Word, and he calls believers to himself by his Word (Genesis 12:3; Romans 8:30).
God’s Word causes us to be born again (1 Peter 1:23).
God’s Word sanctifies us (John 17:17).
God’s Word is at work in believers to bring us to glorify God in our lives more and more (1 Thessalonians 2:13).
God’s Word is not only descriptive, it is effective. God’s Word not only sets forth, it brings forth. If life and death are in the power of even our speech (Proverbs 18:21), eternal life hinges upon God’s speech.
So what does that mean for the preacher? It means that the only power your ministry will ever have comes from God’s Spirit working through God’s Word. God’s Word and Spirit are what converts sinners. God’s Word and Spirit build up the saints. God’s Word and Spirit are what accomplish God’s purposes in the world (Isaiah 55:10-11).
That is why every pastor should preach “expositionally”—that is, preach sermons that take the main point of a passage of Scripture, make it the main point of the sermon, and apply it to life today. Week by week a pastor should start not from what he thinks the congregation needs to hear, but from what God has said to them in his Word.
(*Some of this material has been drawn from Michael Horton, People and Place [Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 2008], 39-42)
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