Check it out with the rest of the Bible. No “truth” ever contradicts the whole body of truth revealed in the Scriptures. Check it, too, with a fellow preacher, one who knows more about the Bible than you do, and not one that you know will always agree with you!
Do not be afraid to have some original thought. Let the wind of the Spirit blow the cobwebs from your mind!
- Approach It Creatively
God is a Creator. His Word is a creative Word. Everything which God made, He created by His Word! The Word of God should not be bound. It is still a creative and powerful Word. When released into redeemed hearts, it will create and transform.
Always be aware of the creative potential of God’s Word. Handle it with an attitude of faith and expectancy. Always be mindful that it is filled with creative ability. It has far more energy and ability than you will ever understand. It is always capable of producing far more than you could comprehend.
Remember, it is a miracle Word. God is in His Word. His creative genius is in it. Your ministry should be aimed at releasing this creative ability into the lives of your hearers.
- Treat It Constructively
Remember that you are a laborer together with God. You are involved in CONSTRUCTING something, not destroying it. Your task, under God, is to build up the Body of Christ. Therefore, your messages should be constructive, not destructive.
Sometimes your emphasis may be very searching. The word you deliver may bring your listeners to heart-searching and repentance. Their reaction may be brokenness and tears, but they should not be left like that!
Consider Ezra and Nehemiah (Neh 8:5-12). God had delivered a very heavy word to the returned exiles. As they listened to the exposition of the Law, they realized how far they had gotten away from it during the years of exile.
This caused them to weep, bowing their faces to the ground in repentance. The prophets allowed them to do this for a while. Then they interrupted their weeping and mourning and got the people on their feet again.
They said: “…go …eat…and drink … neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the Lord is your strength ” (vs 10).
Do not constantly bring the people under condemnation. Your ultimate goal is to see them built up, strengthened and edified. To accomplish this, you must minister constructively.
- Study It Comparatively
Scripture must be compared with Scripture. It must always be interpreted within the total context of the Bible. This demands a maturity of understanding of the whole Bible.
You must study the Bible consistently “to show yourself approved unto God, a workman that does not need to be ashamed, rightly ‘applying’ the word of truth” (2Tim 2:15 pph).
- Conclude It Practically
All effective Bible preaching and teaching must have a practical conclusion and application. Ministry is not merely to inform the mind, but rather to form the life. You should always have a practical conclusion to make. Suggest to your audience some meaningful response. People need to respond to the word you have brought.
E. DELIVERING THE EXPOSITORY MESSAGE
- Turn To Passage
Have your congregation turn to the appropriate passage in the Bible.
- Read Passage Aloud
If you plan to expound a particular chapter, read it out to the people. Perhaps the congregation may share the reading with you, each one reading out a verse or two.
- Introduce Your Theme
Explain how you intend to deal with it. Explain your purpose and intention, so that the people may cooperate with you. They will then understand where you are heading and will be able to follow along with you.
- Read Passage Aloud Again
You may then decide to read the chapter through again, one verse at a time, making a suitable commentary on each verse.
- SEVEN PRINCIPLES
At this point, I would like to introduce to you seven vital principles which are extremely important, particularly in expository preaching. Remember them, and seek to cover them whenever you expound the Word of God.
Make sure that your commentary is easily understood. Do not try to be too profound or mysterious. The aim of effective expository preaching is to make the relevant passage as easy to understand as possible.