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How Expository Preaching Changed Me. . . Part 2

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I am continuing this series on some odd and end thoughts about how that expository preaching changed my thinking. Part 1 is available here . It Forced a Change In How I Looked at Success Success is no longer the size of the building, crowd, or offering total. For me success has had a huge shift toward hungering for excellence instead of “success.” All of this came about when I took a look at Paul’s approach to those he mentored. “Timothy, you stay in Ephesus and pastor these 25,000 or so. Teach doctrine diligently and understand there are a few beasts you will have to confront but this is where real spiritual warfare will play into your advantage. Spiritual warfare comprises far more than just angels and demons, Timothy, it has much to do with your tools. Keep your belt of doctrine on. Make sure you have a breastplate of holiness secured to the belt of doctrine. Keep your shoes of peace on it is an amazing foundation to fight from. Peace in your heart is more important t

Book Recommendation -- D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones Two Volume Biography

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It has been quite some time since I have spent a blog on a book recommendation. However, with Christmas right around the corner, this might be a good time for me to recommend some for you. While I take a brief break from the expository preaching genre, let me introduce to you a man who was an expositor. When I was in Bible college, our textbook for homiletics was written by D ML-J. The book is actually a set of lectures that he delivered to a group of aspiring preachers on different aspects of the preaching act. This was the first book by D ML-J that I read. During that time, E. E. Jolley, continued to encourage me to buy everything that D ML-J had written. All of his books were actually nothing more than his sermons that had been transcribed from tapes by his daughter. Admittedly, in my early days of preaching, D ML-J’s stuff was “heavy” for me because I was always looking for the quick fix. However, as time progressed on, I saw the value of his material greatly increase. S

How Expository Preaching Changed Me. . . Part 1

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Just for the record and for a summary, I am giving you the links on one page for those who might want to read them later. Planned Preaching -- Part 1 -- An introduction to Expository Preaching and an example of some of my foolishness in preaching when I was a rookie. Planned Preaching -- Part 2 -- The reasons we ought to give ourselves to the disciplines of Expository Preaching. Planned Preaching -- Part 3 -- How to begin your initial efforts at Expository Preaching. Planned Preaching -- Part 4 -- Some recommendations about exactly where to start as far as Biblical texts. Planned Preaching -- Part 5 -- Some of the helpful tools that are necessary to get involved in Expository Preaching. Planned Preaching -- Part 6 -- Some more of the helpful tools that are necessary to help in Expository Preaching. Planned Preaching -- Part 7 -- The steps that I have used to work through a Biblical book in an expository manner. I am going to write on some fina

Planned Preaching????!!!!! -- Part 7

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With this next post I want to give you a few things that have been useful to me as far as the preparation process for actually putting a lengthy series together. 1. Read the Book! First, read the Book! It is important for you to read the whole book of whatever you are working with. If you choose to begin with 1st John, you should read that epistle daily. It takes about 25 minutes to read through 1st John but as you read it repetitively there is an ability that you develop through the rote of it that helps you to cross-reference the chapters because you are familiar with Scripture. On a side note concerning reading the Bible: You can break up the Bible into segments and read it through 30 times in about 2 ½ years. The way this works is you should take for instance 1st John and read its 5 chapters every day for 30 days. Then go to Philippians and read it entirely every day for 30 days. To alternate the shorter books with longer ones, then go to Matthew and read chapters 1

Planned Preaching????!!!!! -- Part 6

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The last post on expository preaching was about some tools that encouraged me to get into verse-by-verse teaching. Let me allay the concerns of some who may be reading these posts, I am not speaking of an off-the-cuff rambling from one verse to the next and making varied comments about all sorts of things that come to the preacher’s mind. I am speaking of working through a paragraph or a passage where the context is intent on enlightening us about what God has to say about things. When one does this sort of teaching, doctrinal understanding is heightened and a God-focused ministry of the Word will prevail. It will prevail against theological liberalism, doctrinal shallowness, and things that are shades of gray will become very clearly black and white. Our gray thinking world and even some gray-thinking saints will not appreciate the firm and clear directives that the Bible speaks specifically on. Gray-thinking creates an atmosphere for “out of season” preaching as Paul encourage

Planned Preaching????!!!!! -- Part 5

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With this fifth part in the series on expository preaching, I want to recommend to you some of the tools that will be necessary to direct you toward expository preaching. Much of what I have learned about this type of preaching has been primarily garnered by self-study. I have taken two classes at a seminary level that pushed me toward the concept of expository preaching. However much of it was learned simply by reading books (some of them multiple times) that dealt with the expository method. I marked them up in the margins and underlined things for emphasis and always had a notebook that I could write things down that really seemed to be able to help me. I look at books much as a carpenter looks at his assortment of tools in his toolbox. There are some tools the carpenter will use every single day and there are others that he will use occasionally while others will be used rarely. But all in all, he still has them at his disposal. I found initially that biography held

Planned Preaching????!!!!! -- Part 4

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I begin this fourth post in encouraging you toward expository preaching with thanks for all the e-mails and even some comments on the blog that I have received concerning this type of preaching. It has been quite interesting to me to see the apparent desire coming from a lot of men concerning the transitioning of their own preaching styles in serving their churches weekly. My brother, Mark, some years ago aptly picked up on the homiletic keys that some preachers were guilty of. He told me that he had heard a lot of preaching where the man picked a text and then pitched a fit. That homiletic plan is literally called “pick and pitch.” We heard that mostly at some, uh, well I need not tell you where we heard that as the geography might blow some cover. I am quick to add that Mark or I ever heard that style of preaching from our pastor, Joe Patterson. Brother Patterson was always well prepared on Sundays and Wednesdays (mid-week) were always times that routinely we went through port

Planned Preaching????!!!!! -- Part 3

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I continue this series of blog articles on expository preaching. In Part 1 , I explained some of my earlier interests in expository preaching and some antics in the topical sermon routes that I took. In Part 2 , I explained the importance and necessity of verse-by-verse exposition and the needed commitment to preach through lengthy passages of Scripture. In this third part, I want to give you some thoughts and ideas on beginning your own series of expository messages. 1. Begin with your interests. The first thing about beginning in the verse-by-verse exposition, you should work with a passage that you are keenly interested in. In fact, if you have a “candy-stick” this might be a very good place to start. If you have certain interests in biblical characters, you might work through a passage in the Gospels that lists the disciples. While this would be a series that is more biographical in nature, you are still grasping the concept that discipline is required to work on to the

Planned Preaching????!!!!! -- Part 2

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In a previous blog , I tried to introduce the idea of planned preaching and mentioned some of my own foibles in my “rookie” days of preaching. In this post, I want to try and at least attempt to put into your mind the merits of planned preaching. I also know that in Pentecostal circles that this concept can be met with some incredulity because there is that question about preaching “what the Spirit lays on your heart.” I’ve come to understand that when a minister says he is going to preach something that God has “laid on my heart” that it is either a) going to be very good or b) he is terribly unprepared and you are in for a long night. 1. Paul Encouraged It. So what about the idea of planned or expository preaching? My greatest defense of it is what Paul told the Ephesian elders in Acts 20. He informed them that he had preached the whole counsel of God. This passage literally infers to us that he had preached his entire way through the OT and had used the Epistles to do so.

Planned Preaching????!!!!! -- Part 1

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On an e-mail group to which I am a member a question was recently posed by a pastor who had been serving his church for 3 years and was heading into his fourth year. He asked the question, “Can anyone suggest to me a plan for preaching that will cater to spiritual growth?” I believe the question to be a very valuable one and it was more than just a pastor looking for a nifty little sermon series that would appeal to the senses but never really settle the soul. Good Pentecostal preaching has always been high energy and high octane. Strong doses of encouragement and conviction could come in one message. There have been other times that I have heard messages that were geared toward a single focus that worked well. True Pentecostal preaching is more than just content, it is full of passion and anointing that will generally call for an immediate response in an altar at the conclusion of the message. This is healthy and it is a necessity. Increasingly there are s