A commitment to the necessity of Christ-centered expository preaching is not an end but a beginning. The application of this commitment will mean countless hours poring over biblical texts to understand the meaning of every text in light of its relationship to Jesus Christ and his kingdom. The key is not a formula but rather saturation in Christ and his Word that results in the cultivation of a Christ-centered instinct that expresses itself in preaching. Such preaching follows the apostolic example and unapologetically approaches the text prejudiced by Christ and his kingdom. Anything less than preaching Jesus Christ from all the Scripture is not Christian preaching.
EXPOSITORY PREACHING DEFINED
Preaching that takes a particular text of Scripture as its subject, proclaiming the truth of that text in light of its historical, epochal, and Christocentric, kingdom-focused canonical contexts, thereby exposing the meaning of the human and divine authors for the purpose of gospel-centered application.
INDISPENSIBLE QUESTIONS FOR SERMON PREPARATION
1. What is the meaning of the text in its original historical context and epochal context?
2. What is the meaning of the text in light of innercanonical associations (literary structure, plot structure, connections, allusions, analogies, symbols, types)?
3. What is the meaning of the text in light of its relationship to the person and work of Jesus Christ?
4. What is the meaning of the text in light of its relationship to eschatological fulfillment in the kingdom of Christ?
5. What is the best way to proclaim the meaning of the text and apply the text’s meaning to my hearers as mediated through the gospel of Christ and his kingdom?
QUESTIONS TO ASK AFTER THE SERMON DRAFT IS PREPARED & BEFORE IT IS PREACHED (Partially adapted from Tim Keller’s Preaching the Gospel in a Post-Modern World)
1. How does the sermon tell me about Jesus?
2. How does the sermon tell me something that is true only because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ?
3. How will my life be harmed if I do not apply what the sermon text tells me about Jesus?
4. How does the sermon cause me to worship Jesus?
Did Jesus have to be crucified and resurrected for this sermon to work?
(If the answer is “No” then start over)