Wednesday, July 5, 2006

Be Careful Who You Listen To

I am taken back by some of the preaching that people in the ministry listen to these days. If it can be called preaching! Men and women like Joyce Meyer's, Kenneth Copeland and wife, the whole TBN crew, Rod Parsely, T.D. Jakes, John Hagee, Joel Osteen, and the list goes on. Preaching today tends to be more feel good, saying what the congregation wants to hear; perhaps with a few verses thrown here and there from the Bible. Just like a bone thrown to a dog to soothe him and calm him down for awhile.

I argue for expository preaching in the local church. People need to hear God's inerrant words preached and taught in the local church. We need men will who shape their sermons from the biblical text, and not just say what is desired. There are some good expositors out there. Find them and listen to them and begin preaching in the same manner. Once a person hears expositional preaching in the local church he or she will never want to hear anything else from the pulpit.

I sort of can understand why people in the pews listen to some of the preaching that is garbage. Many times the person in the pew does not know any better because their pastor has not taught them or modeled what good preaching is. Men of God, it is time to take a stand for the Truth of God's Word; I encourage you to begin listening today to good expositional, biblical preaching from men who truly have a love and passion for God's Word. Don't just listen to it, but begin modeling it in your church using your God-given personality.


Wrightsaid said...

I've heard (or read) expository preaching from some of the best, men like Lloyd-Jones and Boice for example, and I must confess that although I thought it superlative, I did not as you might have predicted come away wanting to hear only expository sermons for the rest of my life. I did not, in part, because I've also heard or read topical sermons from some of the best, Spurgeon and Barnhouse included, who preached in a manner that most often avoided the criticism you often make that such a method leads to the use of proof-texts and an ignorance or neglect of context.

In fact, I think we must be honest at this point and admit that it is at least as obvious that a person who preaches through an entire book of Scripture can distort a text as thoroughly as any sloppy topical preacher. I can recount many such examples.

In light of your obvious fervor for that style, so concerned to champion it that you seem almost to make it an ethical imperative for every pastor, I want to ask where, in Scripture, you find any examples of expository preaching. Can you produce even a single example of it? It seems to me that Christ and His Apostles were prone to topical and exhortative sermons. If expository preaching were the necessity you seem to make it, I must wonder why we find nothing like it in the Word of GOD practiced by the very men who are the greatest guides and examples to us. We find, in point of fact, the very style of preaching you seem to reject as intrinsically flawed.

Perhaps then it is not the style but the character and intentions of the preacher that are paramount?

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your comment Wright. Yes Spurgeon was not considered an expositor, and yes there are other types of preaching. I still argue for Expository preaching in the church, why? Because it puts God in charge and not man. I don't know about you, but the context is important to consider and I do not hear the context of a passage addressed many times in topical or narrative sermons. So, one is safe with expository preaching in the local church.

I think we see examples of expository preaching in Scripture. Neh. Chapter eight is a classic passage and think expository preaching is done there. I would encourage you to read it or re-read the passage.

Yes, I believe that the character of the minister matters. I love to hear good expository sermons marked with an exemplary life. This is a key issue in preaching; I still think expository preaching is the best way to go in the local church.