Pounding the Pulpit 30 Years

Last Sunday was a special day for Katrina and me as we thanked God for the honor of serving The Donelson Fellowship for 30 years.  I had the opportunity of speaking briefly about my philosophy of pulpit ministry.

Nehemiah 8:8 is my working definition of preaching.  It says Ezra read from the book of the Law distinctly, gave the sense, and caused the people to understand the reading.

As a ministerial student years ago, I was trained to preach expositional sermons.  I was told there’s no power within me or within my personality to change lives.  The power is in the living and active Word of God. 

I was told it’s not what I say about the Word of God that changes lives; it’s the Word of God itself.  It’s not my personal opinions; it’s His revealed truth.

I was told to devote my mornings to the study of Scripture. 

I was told I shouldn’t go into the Bible to find sermons but to meet the Sermon-Giver.  And I was told that as He fed my mind with His Word, my sermons would be overflow.

It’s tempting to preach a lot of how-to, positive–thinking, shallow, sentimental, entertaining, trendy, story-heavy, need-based sermons.  And certainly our messages should be relevant, practical, well-illustrated, need-sensitive, and engaging.

But we don’t preach to entertain an audience; we preach to edify a church.  And only the consistent exposition of Scripture, rightly divided, given in its naturally unfolding context, will do that. 

One thought on “Pounding the Pulpit 30 Years

  1. Truer words were never spoken. For many years I have appreciated your messages. The strength and value of the message is in the Word alone. Congratulations on 30 years. I wish you and the people of Donelson many more.

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