“…and at the proper time manifested in his word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by the command of God our Savior;” (Titus 1:3 (ESV)
The following article is an excerpt from the Master’s Seminary Blog, June 23, 2020. It is entitled Ten Essentials of Preaching.
1. Preaching must be Biblically-Centered and Biblically-Grounded.
2. Preaching must be God-Exalting.
3. Preaching must be Christ-ward.
4. Preaching must be Doctrinally and Theologically Accurate.
5. Preaching must be dependent, both before and after the Preaching Event.
6. Preaching must be Well-Prepared.
Being Spirit-led is no excuse for being ill-prepared. A preacher, like any Christian, must be committed to disciplining himself “for the purpose of godliness” (1 Tim. 4:7). He must be committed to communing with God (through the reading of Scripture and prayer), as well as with God’s people.
As it relates to his preaching in particular, he must heed the words of 2 Timothy 2:15: “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.” In short, he must be a disciplined man who is committed to working hard and toiling in his study. He must be committed to studying the text in its original language, applying sound principles of grammar, hermeneutics, and exegesis to extract the main point of the text, studying the Scriptures and key theological treatises for important cross-references, and developing a sound homiletical outline that unearths and shines a spotlight on the main point of the text.
As time goes on, this exegetical process is likely to go faster, but the disciplined preacher must be committed to taking no shortcuts in the exegetical process. As the process goes faster, the preacher has more time to go deeper.
7. Preaching must be Authoritative.
The man who has been appointed to preach is not standing up to share his opinions or suggestions. He is not giving a TED Talk. He is not a life coach or a self-help guru who happens to be holding a Bible. Instead, as did the prophets of the Old Testament and the apostles of the New Testament, the preacher must be willing to say, with boldness, “Thus saith the Lord.” He does so precisely because he knows the power rests with God and His Word, not with the preacher himself.
He is not ashamed of the message he has been called to proclaim, nor does he shy away from or minimize the office and responsibility he holds. As D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones put it:
The preacher should never be apologetic. He should never give the impression that he is speaking by their leave as it were. He should not be tentatively putting forward certain suggestions and ideas. That is not to be his attitude at all. He is a man, who is there to “declare” certain things; he is a man under commission and under authority. He is an ambassador, and he should be aware of his authority. He should always know that he comes to the congregation as a sent messenger.
Sound preaching is authoritative preaching.
Take time today to pray for your pastor and other ministers who preach the Word of God. Pray they never compromise from God’s command to “Preach the Word” (2 Tim. 4:1-7).
Soli deo Gloria!