It is so tempting for us to live as if the main thing about ourselves is what others can see on the outside. We know that what’s on the inside is most important—but our old sin nature keeps enticing us to focus on the external. It’s especially crucial for church leaders to avoid this pitfall because people look to us as examples of how to live the Christian life. Unfortunately, at times we act as if degrees, experience, teaching talent, leadership skills, or a gregarious personality are more important than the inner man. While those things may be helpful, they are not the main thing for a minister.
Most people would say they know a good sermon when they hear one. Yet, listing the specific characteristics is a more difficult task. For preachers, knowing the answer to “What makes a good sermon?” is crucial.
There is a clear distinction between Bible exposition and expository preaching. While these two tasks are related, they are not identical. If you want to be an expositor, you shouldn’t sermonize the text. You should strive to grow in your understanding of biblical truth.
Becoming a seasoned expositor of God’s Word requires a method or a series of specific steps. Equally important, however, is your starting point. Biblical exposition must start with reverence for God.
Imagine having to give an account for the souls of human beings. And having to give that account not to an earthly boss but to the risen Son of God Himself—your Lord and Master Jesus Christ. Well, that is exactly what every pastor is required to do according to Hebrews 13:17. It is that fearful prospect that should make our blood run cold.
In 2 Timothy 2:24-26, Timothy’s father in the faith, Paul, sets before him the terms of service regarding pastoral leadership. In this passage, we find the calling, character, and conduct of the true servant of God.
As a pastor, how you know and love your fellow leaders could make the difference between success or failure in ministry. While imprisoned in Rome, Paul wrote to the Colossian church and sent them a kind of verbal “group photo” of his band of workers. Here we see Paul’s excellent example of how he knew and loved the leaders who served with him.
You can overcome the handicap of youth and inexperience by following the advice given to Timothy in 1 Timothy 5:1-2. Even the youngest servant of the Lord, if diligent in pursuing these virtues, will have both an impact, and an audience.
If you are not afraid to be vulnerable and model your process before others, block diagramming during discipleship can help you to make the most of your time in sermon prep. By doing this weekly exercise with men, I discovered I was benefitting just as much as they were, if not more.
In many churches today, pastoral authority has been abused and has overreached its God-given boundaries. To be a blessing to the church, leaders need a functional understanding of pastoral authority.