Some thoughts on Preaching - it should only be from the Bible
Sermons should be:
- About extracting truth from the Bible in order that it can be applied to people’s lives
- Exegetical or expository preaching; where bible truth is presented accurately
- About God, so people may know God
- About the doctrine of God, for doctrine provides the truth of God, his Son, the Gospel and indeed, reality.
Preaching is not about
Experience; anyone can provide an experience, and the Devil can provide a well disguised even clever experience that mocks God, misleads Christians and prevents people receiving the gospel, being utterly false. Church apostasy arises because truth is substituted for experience.
Passion: The Prophets of Baal were extremely passionate – injuring themselves in their passion, yet failed. Elijah, in faith merely prays to the LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, and fire comes and consumes the entire alter and offering (1 Kings 18).
Behaviour, but about belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. To be sure, our behaviour will be modified by truth (Love you neighbours as our self), but the truth that sets the framework for behaviour is from Scripture. Behaviour is determined by believe; believe in evolution and one will allow abortion or sexual intercourse with anyone etc. Preaching must be about knowledge of God not activity.
Activity, but knowledge and action. Busy churches are not necessarily, or even, holy yet alone pleasing to God. Business never equates to holiness.
"Jesus" but the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Yeshua the Messiah, and no other, the one who says;
Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. John 14:6
Devotion, although useful, is not preaching. For devotion to occur one needs to know which Jesus one is speaking about – the Jesus of the Mormon, or New Age, or the Son of God. Devotion to God only comes from knowledge of God, thus requires the preaching of the Word of God.
Preaching is About the Study of the Bible
The only way to be set free is to know and practice the truth of the Bible. Liberation only comes from knowing divine truth, which is only found in the Bible.
And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. John 8:32
Paul states that we must daily renew our minds:
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Romans 12:2
Bible study is the first thing we should be doing!
But He answered and said, "It is written, 'man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'" Matthew 4:4
All revivals in the Old Testament took place only after the truth was revealed, and practiced. In the time of Nehemiah (who rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, making it a safe place to live) the law was read to all the people, and from this, they returned to God. Ezra used expository preaching in its fullest form to convey the content and meaning of the Law to the Children of Israel.
So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading. Nehemiah 8:8
Josiah, who became king of Judah, read the law, understood it, and put it into practice, leading to wide spread, but not complete, return to the Lord (wickedness was too ingrained, and too few leaders returned to the Lord. If leaders of churches do not read the Bible, the church will be lost).
Now before him there was no king like him, who turned to the LORD with all his heart, with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the Law of Moses; nor after him did any arise like him. 2 Kings 23:25
In the New Testament, those that were saved after Peter preached the gospel, read, learnt and practiced the doctrine of the apostles. (Acts 2:42). It is the Bible the child of God wants to go first, yet the wolves in our churches take them to every other place but the Holy Scriptures of God.
Paul admonishes Timothy to read the Bible publically, and furthermore, Timothy was ordered to exhort (or preach) the doctrines of God (1 Timothy 4:13). This only comes from teaching verse by verse, line by line the Bible. Indeed Paul command pastors 8 times to minister from the Word of God – the complete opposite to church Pastors in 2016, who only want to appease the ears of superstitious people.
Without knowledge of God, one cannot please him – for a wife cannot please her husband except she comes to know him.
God expects His word to be preached
As rain contributes to germination, growth and fruit of the land, so does the Bible preached to Christians and non-believers. It behoves preachers to use God’s word and thoughts rather than man’s to change the hearts of people.
"For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, And do not return there, But water the earth, And make it bring forth and bud, That it may give seed to the sower And bread to the eater, So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void [empty], But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. Isaiah 55:10-11
Isaiah knows the power of the Scripture and can confidently state that anyone preaching God’s word, that word will not return empty [or void]. Jeremiah puts it this way: “Is not My [Yahweh’s] word like a fire?” says the LORD, “And like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces?” (Jeremiah 23:29). To change the hearts of men and women, the Bible is required – nothing else will work.