PREACHING THE BOOK GOD WROTE
What is the Biblical Method of DOING CHURCH MINISTRY?
Some would say Jerry Falwell was wrong in his methodology. Some would say that Jack Hyles was wrong in his methods. Some would say the "Church Growth Movement" is wrong. Some do not like Rick Warren, or Bill Hybels method of church ministry. Some would say the "Emergent" or "Emerging Movement" is wrong. Some really do not like the Robert Schuller Sr.’s Garden Grove Church’s methods. Some don’t like the Andy Stanley or Ed Young, Jr.’s methods. Nor do they like the Calvary Chapel’s Chuck Smith’s method. As a matter of fact if it’s not the fundamental way, it’s not biblical they say. Or if it’s not the Reformed Church’s method it’s not biblical.
IS THERE REALLY A BIBLICA METHOD OF DOING CHURCH GOD’S WAY?
Yes, just ask any preacher or pastor.
Monday’s Shepherd’s Pulpit Magazine’s article May 28th 2007.
Preaching the Book God Wrote by John MacArthur
This article by John MacArthur changed my preaching, in the early 1980's.
Fundamentalists learned to preach topically and generally preaching was about the preacher’s experiences and ideas. While always believing the Scriptures were inerrant, the idea of relying on what God said about Himself and His doing and about men in relation to Him was not a logical response to how I was preaching.
Then John's articles, (plus the Shepherd's Conferences) brought about this idea of teaching the Word of God book by book. The idea of expository preaching allowed me to say to the church body that I believed in the idea of Biblical inerrancy
And the best way to find the church's life and power was in the preaching/teaching of God's Word, chapter by chapter, verse by verse, word by word. Rather than giving the preacher’s experiences, let the Word teach God's truths.
IF you believe the Bible is really God's Word and is about Him and His purpose for mankind and His Church, you will allow God's Word alone to be the foundation of your teaching to the church.
John writes: "The theological highlight of 20th Century had to be evangelicalism’s intense focus on the doctrine of biblical inerrancy." Much of what was written defending inerrancy in the 70's and 80's represented the most acute theological reasoning our generation has produced.
- Paul D. Feinberg states: "The doctrine of biblical inerrancy is "the claim that when all facts are known, the scriptures in their original autographs and properly interpreted will be shown to be without error in all that they affirm to the degree of precision intended, whether that affirmation relates to doctrine, history, science, geography, geology, etc."
John writes: "Yet it seems our practice commitment to inerrancy is somewhat lacking. The modern evangelical’s commitment to the authority and inerrancy of the Bible doesn’t always flesh out in ministry. Shouldn’t our preaching reflect our conviction that God’s Word is infallibly authoritative? Too often, it doesn’t. In fact, there is a discernable trend in contemporary evangelicalism away from biblical preaching, and a corresponding drift toward experience centered, pragmatic, topical messages in the pulpit."
John wrote this in the early 1980's, and it seems we are still deep-seated into this kind of preaching, experience centered, pragmatic, topical messages in the pulpit.
"How can this be?" John continues: "Shouldn’t our preaching reflect our conviction that the Bible is the verbally inspired, inerrant Word of God? If we believe that ‘all Scripture is inspired by God’ and inerrant, shouldn’t we be equally committed to the truth that it is ‘profitable for teaching, for correction, for training in righteousness; that the man of God may be equipped for every good work"? 2 Timothy 3:16-17. Shouldn’t that magnificent truth determine how we preach?"
John is right, but I think preachers believe they are preaching the Word of God. Personally, I don’t know any preachers who would say they aren’t preaching the Word of God. But often their preaching of the Word doesn’t reflect 2 Timothy 3:16-17.
Paul gives this mandate to Timothy: 2 Timothy 4:1`-2
I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season, and out of season, reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction."
John points out this: "ANY FORM OF PREACHING THAT IGNORES THE INTENDED PURPOSE AND DESIGN OF GOD IS SERIOUSLY DEFICIENT."
J.I. Packer in his book "Preaching As Biblical Interpretation," Inerrancy And Common Sense, (1980)
Preaching appears in the Bible as a relaying of what God has said about Himself and His doings, and about men in relation to Him, plus a pressing of His commands, promises, warnings, and assurances, with a view to winning the hearer or hearers...to a positive response.
Preaching then should reflects God’s commands, and promises, and warnings, etc. Preaching the Word with the view that the word will win the hearers to a positive response.
To have a positive response from the church body then is by the preaching of the Word of God.
Charity is finally finished proof reading my article. She said "Charles at Seminary they taught the bible verse by verse. Dr. Oldham did for sure. Raymond Barber did the Old Testament also. They taught the bible verse by verse yes. But preaching andteaching to them were two different ideal. Teaching the Bible book by book was for the Sunday School, and Preaching was to be topical.