Session 7 – The Effects of Pentecost Preaching – The Salvation of Sinners

Expositor’s Conference 2013

Session 7 – The Effects of Pentecost Preaching – The Salvation of Sinners (Sinclair Ferguson)

Text: Galatians 4:1–6 (NASB95)

1 Now I say, as long as the heir is a child, he does not differ at all from a slave although he is owner of everything,

2 but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by the father.

3 So also we, while we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental things of the world.

4 But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law,

5 so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.

6 Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”


Text: Romans 8:9–32 (NASB95)

9 However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.

10 If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness.

11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.

12 So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh—

13 for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

14 For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

15 For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!”

16 The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God,

17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.

18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

19 For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God.

20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope

21 that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.

22 For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.

23 And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.

24 For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees?

25 But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.

26 In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words;

27 and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;

30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?

32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?


Romans chapter 8 is the great chapter in the Bible concerning the ministry of the Holy Spirit. The language here is rich with the imagery of family – brothers, sons, adoption, children, heirs. Comparing Galatians 4 and Romans 8 we see a subtle difference in the cry “Abba, Father”. In Galatians, it is the Spirit who cries “Abba, Father”. In Romans 8 it is the spirit of adoption as sons in us which cries “Abba, Father.”

Adoption is the highest of our present privileges. The apex of the ministry of the Spirit in the believer is this gift of the spirit of adoption as sons.

1.  When the Spirit comes, He produces in us family likeness to the Son of God (v.13)

A.  Ongoing destruction of sin

B.  Ongoing construction of holiness

2.  When the Spirit comes, He brings assurance of our adoption of sons.

A.  This is the common experience of all believers.

B.  The Old Testament scriptures do not speak of God as Father of the believer.

C.  The New Testament scripture reveals God as the personal Father of the believer.

D.  This is done practically by the Spirit witnessing with our spirit.

i.      The evidence is our crying out “Abba, Father.”

a.  The cry here is the shriek of a child for help.

b.  This is not the evidence of a super-mature Christian, it is the nature of every Christian, newborn and mature. It is instinct. It is because of the Spirit in us.

3.  When the Spirit comes, he teaches us that there is significance and meaning in our suffering.

A.  We who have the firstfruits of the Spirit groan inwardly waiting for our adoption as sons. We long for that day when this adoption is fully realized.

B.  The Spirit does not release us from the sufferings and groanings. We groan because we already have the Spirit. We groan because we are not completely there yet.

i.      We groan because of suffering.

ii.      We groan because of our sins.

iii.      We groan because we have not yet been resurrected. We are not yet whole. There is a home-sickness in every believer.

C.  We endure the suffering in order to share in the glory. It is the suffering that results in the glory. It is not a now-then construction. It is a now-now construction – suffering now, glory now.

4.  When the Spirit comes, He gives us supernatural help in our weakness (v.26).

A.  “helps” contains two prepositions – “sun” and “anti”. “Sun” indicates someone who is with us. “Anti” indicates someone who stands alongside us.

B.  The Spirit knows how to pray for us in our weakness. The groanings of the Spirit are the deep-seated cries of our soul. God is able to interpret the groanings of the Spirit.

5.  When the Spirit comes, He comes as the agent which transforms us into the likeness of the Son.

A.  The Father promised the Son that He could send the Spirit into those who would be adopted as sons.

B.  One day through the ministry of the Spirit we will be just like our elder Brother.

C.  The deepest desire of the Trinity is that we will all be family.


Session 6 – Question and Answer

Expositor’s Conference 2013

Session 6 – Question and Answer (Sinclair Ferguson and Steve Lawson)

Q.           How much does preaching in the power of Holy Spirit have to do with the amount of time the preacher spends in prayer?

A.            Preparation and prayer are interrelated. But power in preaching is absent apart from the Spirit. Disciplined study includes prayer as part of the preparation. We must be careful not to allow our preparation fill just the remaining time. We are told that there was prayer in the upper room before the day of Pentecost came.


Q.           What was the relationship of the Holy Spirit to Jesus as Jesus hung on the cross and said “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”

A.            Jesus was highly exalted by his death on the cross, and in that the Father was pleased in the obedience of Jesus Christ. On the cross Jesus was sustained by the power of the Holy Spirit in the sense that the abandonment of God did not overwhelm him, but he was sustained by the power of the Holy Spirit. The garden of Gethsemane shows us that Jesus did not desire to experience this divine desertion. But he remains faithful in choosing the cross so that he might gain the bride.


Q.           What advice would you give to young pastors training up young men? How can churches better train up men for ministry?

A.            Here is the question – What minister has invested themselves in your life? Ministers today are preparing themselves to be ministers but not servants, because they have never been served. Ministers today are preparing themselves to lead without ever having themselves been lead. The minister must allow the younger men to get near enough to them “smell” what ministry is all about. Younger men need to see and feel, not just hear, what ministry is all about. Preparation for the ministry is becoming very expensive. The people of God need to be encouraged to provide for those who are preparing for ministry. Young men are drawn to the strong preaching of the word of God. Intentional discipleship in theology, history, and the doctrines of grace is also important.


Q.           Opinion of covenantal baptism as compared to other forms of baptism in the Presbyterian Church.

A.            The mode and time of baptism is generally not part of the confession of faith for members. But this is different for officers. The theology will affect the atmosphere of the church. There are people who are drawn by the particular idiosyncrasies of a church. We must not be driven to be different from everyone else as the only goal for ministry. Being argumentative is a biblical disqualification from leadership.


Q.           Why did God create Lucifer knowing he would become Satan?

A.            There is a big answer – God does everything for his own glory. Another answer is that there is a display of God’s character in the judgment of evil. However, the ends do not provide a full explanation. We must appeal to Deuteronomy 29:29 in this matter. We would have to understand God as God understands himself to answer questions such as this. We must not feel any personal constraint to know every answer to every question. There is an answer to every question, but we will not know the answer to every question, or we would be God. The wisdom and knowledge of God is beyond our ability to comprehend. The sin of Adam and Eve was this desire to have the knowledge and wisdom of God.


Q.           The work of the Spirit in regeneration – what is the difference before and after Pentecost?

A.            The same methods were at work for Old Testament believers as for New Testament believers. Both are regenerated in the same way. This continuity is undergirding. The same fruits of the Spirit are seen in the lives of Old Testament believers as in the New Testament. Old Testament saints are regenerated in light of what Christ will do. New Testament saints are regenerated in light of what Christ did. The Old Testament is a progressive revelation of Jesus Christ – the seed of the woman, the offspring of Abraham, the son of David, the suffering servant, the lamb of God. We now live in an epoch of which John the Baptist could only dream of. We have a much greater revelation of the trinity now than the Old Testament believer had. We have this same experience now in the increasing maturity of the believer. The Spirit never gets ahead of Jesus in this progressive revelation. Consideration the narrative in Galatians 3 about the law being the pedagogue to bring us to Christ. Looking back from the position of being in Christ, Paul says that being under the pedagogue was like being a slave. However, before Christ, those who were under the pedagogue delighted in being under the law. It is a matter of perspective from your point of revelation.


Q.           How do I know if I have studied and prayed enough for this Sunday’s sermon?

A.            There is no set answer to this question to be found in the Bible. It differs from person to person and occasion to occasion. It does require a life dedication to both study and prayer. We probably have never studied enough or prayed enough. You know it is time to stop studying and praying when someone knocks on the study door and tells you it’s time to preach.  There is a maddening disconnect between our preparation and prayer and the power of our preaching at times.


Session 5 – The Trumpet Blast of Scotland – The Preaching of John Knox

Expositor’s Conference 2013

Session 5 – The Trumpet Blast of Scotland – The Preaching of John Knox (Steve Lawson)

John Knox was first and foremost a preacher. Even though he was a writer, a theologian, a reformer, he was first and foremost a preacher. He was a preacher throughout the entirety of his converted life.

Born in 1514. Went to the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. Entered the ministry as a personal bodyguard of a preacher who was eventually martyred. Began teaching in St. Andrews Castle. Was taken captive by the French in 1547. Is eventually exchanged and began to preach in England. Made one of the king’s chaplains and sent throughout England to spread the reformed faith. Forced into hiding in 1553 and then flees to France and then to Geneva. Then goes to Frankfurt to pastor a church and returns to Geneva. Works on the Geneva Bible. In 1559 Knox returns to Scotland and helps establish the Church of Scotland. Has a confrontation with Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots. John Knox preaches against the idolatry of the mass. Is put on trial for treason against the Queen. He continues to preach against the Queen. Mary abdicates the throne. Civil war between the Protestants and the Catholics breaks out. Knox moves back to St. Andrews and preaches the rest of his life there and in Edinburgh. Dies in 1572.

Knox led the charge to turn the nation of Scotland around for the gospel. What was it about Knox’s preaching that made this happen? We only have 2 or 3 of Knox’s sermons. What can we know about Knox and his preaching?

1.  God-called. He knew he was called of God to preach. He could not have lived through the crises he faced unless he had been called by God.

a.  This call was made manifest in public when he first began to teach.

b.  He turned down higher positions which would have taken him away from preaching.

2.  God-fearing. Knox feared no man because he feared God.

a.  Knox’s fear of God lead him to respect the stewardship of the word of God that was entrusted to him.

b.  In an interview with Mary, Queen of Scots, Knox said “Madam, in God’s presence I speak.”

c.  No scripture was withheld from John Knox’s preaching.

3.  Text-Driven. Knox had a high view of preaching because he had a high view of scripture.

4.  Sequential Expositor. Knox preached consecutively through complete books of the Bible.

a.  Scripture was to be read in order.

b.  Preaching was to be from one place in scripture – no skipping and no deviating.

5.  Well-Studied Student. His knowledge came out in the pulpit. And he was always learning and reading.

6.  Plain Interpretation of Scripture. Preaching was to be according to the plain and natural reading and interpretation of the scripture.

a.  The Holy Spirit never contradicts himself.

b.  The scriptures are clear and lucid.

7.  Christ-Centered. The person, offices and work of the Lord Jesus Christ.

a.  He directed the Church of Scotland back to its proper head – not a bishop, but Jesus Christ.

b.  No emphasis on sacraments, all emphasis on Christ.

8.  Justification by Faith Alone in Christ Alone by Grace Alone. He was committed to the reformation.

a.  Knox preached against the Catholic Church at its very root.

9.  Sovereign Grace. The absolute supreme authority of God over all things.

a.  Sovereign election – God is the initiator.

b.  Knox’s first work on returning to Scotland is 1559 was publishing a work on the doctrine of predestination.

10.  Polemic Defender of the Faith. He refuted those who contradicted sound doctrine.

a.  The word of God damns Catholic ceremonies and traditions.

11.  Extemporaneous Preacher. Knox preached without a manuscript, just a few notes in the margin of his Bible.

a.  However, there was great preparation in his preaching.

12.  Passionate Delivery. The pulpit was the magnifying glass for Knox.

a.  Knox’s preaching resulted in either antagonism or agreement.


The Significance of Pentecost Preaching – The Coming of the Spirit

Expositor’s Conference 2013

The Power of the Holy Spirit in Preaching

Session 2 – The Significance of Pentecost Preaching – The Coming of the Spirit (Sinclair Ferguson)

Text: John 14:15–31 (NASB95)

15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.

16 “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever;

17 that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.

18 “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.

19 “After a little while the world will no longer see Me, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also.

20 “In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.

21 “He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him.”

22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, what then has happened that You are going to disclose Yourself to us and not to the world?”

23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.

24 “He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me.

25 “These things I have spoken to you while abiding with you.

26 “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.

27 “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.

28 “You heard that I said to you, ‘I go away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved Me, you would have rejoiced because I go to the Father, for the Father is greater than I.

29 “Now I have told you before it happens, so that when it happens, you may believe.

30 “I will not speak much more with you, for the ruler of the world is coming, and he has nothing in Me;

31 but so that the world may know that I love the Father, I do exactly as the Father commanded Me. Get up, let us go from here.

The ministry of the Holy Spirit in preaching. We live in personal communion with the Holy Spirit. He is ever present in our ministry. This communion is distinctive from the communion we have with the Father and with the Son. It is heresy to confuse the distinctives of the various forms of our communion with the members of the Trinity among the members of the Trinity. We never express our communion with God the Father as the one who died on the cross for our sins. That is our communion with only the Son. We must be aware of what is the nature of our specific communion with the Holy Spirit. It is He who sanctifies, it is He who illumines, it is He who comforts, it is He who empowers the preaching.

We must first be aware that it is the Son who sends the Holy Spirit to be with us. We know so much about the gifts of the Spirit, but we are so unaware of the person of the Spirit.

John 16:7 – this is a striking verse. How could it be advantageous for the disciples for Jesus to go away? It is ridiculous. The Christian would chose for Jesus to remain. That is because the Christian does not know the person and the power of the Holy Spirit.

The text we are considering is the chief text of the existence and the application of the Trinity.

Jesus is going to send another comforter. The word “another” here is “allos”, meaning “another of the same kind.” He will be of the same kind as Jesus. Explore what this means:

1.  The Holy Spirit would be a teacher in the same manner as Jesus (v.25-26)

a.  Jesus came as a teacher from God, teaching the very words of God.

b.  Paul writes that the Spirit will teach the deep things of God. This is what we see in verse 20. When the Spirit comes, we will not know less, but more. Specifically, we will be taught more intimately about the nature of Jesus Christ.

c.  The Holy Spirit allows us to see the intimate relationship between the Father and the Son. Even the angels cannot look into the face of God the way the Son does.

d.  The Holy Spirit reveals the depth of the grace of God. We are part of the intimate relationship between the Father and the Son because of the work of the Holy Spirit.

e.  The Spirit teaches us the glory of the Trinity.

f.  Where are we to learn these things? The Spirit will remind us of what Jesus has already said.

i.      He reminded the Apostles of what Jesus said, and they in turned preached these words and wrote about these words.

2.  The Holy Spirit would be a counselor in the same manner as Jesus (v. 16)

a.  Jesus has been the counselor of the disciples for the last three years.

b.  The word “counselor” or “comforter” here is to be taken in the sense of the legal setting. One who comes alongside for the means of defense.

c.  The Holy Spirit came as a defender of Jesus Christ and of His followers.

d.  The Holy Spirit came to convict the world concerning sin, righteousness and judgment. He prosecutes sinners. But He defends the saints.

e.  The paraclete was traditionally the longest standing and best friend who would be called to bear witness for the accused.

i.      The Holy Spirit is this paraclete for Jesus Christ

ii.      The Holy Spirit would empower the Apostles to be paracletes for Jesus Christ.

f.  The same Holy Spirit that filled Jesus Christ is the same Holy Spirit that fills each believer. The disciples would have known this Holy Spirit because they had seen Him working through Jesus and He had been with them from the beginning.

3.  The Holy Spirit would be a home-maker in the same manner as Jesus (v.18)

a.  We are very familiar with Jesus as a home-maker as revealed in John 14:1-4.

b.  The Holy Spirit comes so that we are not left as orphans.

c.  In verse 23, we see that it is the work of the Holy Spirit that the full Trinity makes their home within us.

d.  The passion of the Holy Spirit is to make the Christian a fitting home for the Father and the Son.

e.  The children adore the home-maker. The home-maker is the teacher. The home-maker is the counselor. The home-maker explains the Father.


The Power of the Holy Spirit in Preaching

Expositor’s Conference 2013

The Power of the Holy Spirit in Preaching

Session 1: The Power of Jesus’ Preaching – His Anointing by the Holy Spirit (Steve Lawson)


This is Part 1. Part 2 will be in Session 8.

We must adopt the view that there are (or should be) two people standing in the pulpit when preaching – the preacher and the Holy Spirit. There is no power in the preaching of the word apart from the power of the Holy Spirit. The evidence of the power of preaching with the power of the Holy Spirit is seen by the outworking of the power of the Holy Spirit in the lives of the preacher and the hearer. For instance, consider the events of the various revivals – it is fueled by the fire of the preaching of the word of God but it works greatly in the lives of the hearers.

The power of the Holy Spirit in the preacher requires a complete transformation of the mind and heart of the preacher.

Text: Luke 4:14–21 (NASB95)

14 And Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about Him spread through all the surrounding district.

15 And He began teaching in their synagogues and was praised by all.

16 And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read.

17 And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book and found the place where it was written,

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives, And recovery of sight to the blind, To set free those who are oppressed,

19 To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.”

20 And He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on Him.

21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”


Preaching without the power of the Holy Spirit is not preaching at all. The sovereign power of God in the proclamation of His word is lacking in preaching today. Great preaching comes only with great power (see 1 Cor. 2:1-5). Jesus promised His disciples that they would receive the power of the Holy Spirit for the preaching of the gospel. Jesus Himself preached in the power of the Holy Spirit.


  1. The power of the Spirit (v.14)

a. Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit.

i.      There is at least a year between v.13 and v.14. The events of John 1-4 occur during this time.

                  ii.      The fame of Jesus had spread throughout Galilee.

b. Luke 3:21-22 records the power of the Holy Spirit coming upon Jesus, marking the beginning of His public preaching ministry.

 i.      Heaven was opened – this is an indication that God is going to reveal something to men.

ii.      The Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus to anoint Him with power.

iii.     The Father speaks to confirm His pleasure of His Son. This is a direct revelation of the identity and mission of Jesus Christ.

iv.      Should we expect any less if we are called to preach?

c.  We see this idea of the power of the Holy Spirit empowering Jesus Christ continued in Luke 4:1.

i.      The Spirit leads (or compels) Jesus into the wilderness.

ii.      The power of the Holy Spirit would be crucial in Jesus facing the temptation of Satan (vv.2-12).

d.  As Jesus returns to Galilee in v.14, we see that His preaching, His ministry, His miracles healing, casting out demons are all empowered by the Spirit. This empowering of the Spirit would even be there when He went to the cross to make the sacrifice.

i.      And should we expect any less for our ministry?

ii.      There is not a person who does not need the power of the Holy Spirit when preaching the word.

2.  The priority of the Word (v.15)

a.  Wherever there is the power of the Holy Spirit there will be a priority given to the Word of God.

i.      The book of Acts shows how the person filled with the Holy Spirit cannot help but preach the very Word of God.

ii.      The most common title given to Jesus Christ in the book of Luke is “teacher.”

b.  Jesus came into Galilee and taught in their synagogues. Of course He did. The power of the Holy Spirit always results in the priority of preaching the Word of God.

 i.      Jesus was constantly and continually preaching and teaching the Word of God.

c.  Application – if we are to be constantly preaching and teaching, then we must be constantly learning from the Word of God. We must always be reading, listening to the truth. You cannot teach that which you do not know. The day we stop learning is the day we stop preaching. The well must be dug deeper every day.

3.  The pattern on the Sabbath (v.16-17)

a.  Our attention turns to Nazareth, where Jesus was raised. Scornfully, we are told that nothing good comes out of Nazareth. Jesus is the exception. Verses 23-29 shows the true character of Nazareth.

b.  Jesus went to the synagogue on the Sabbath. Notice that this was His custom.

c.  Then we see that Jesus has built some reputation as a teacher, because He stands up to read.

d.  Jesus is given the scroll of the prophet Isaiah to read.

i.      The reading of the Word of God was central to worship in the Jewish synagogue.

e.  Jesus unrolls the scroll to the exact right scripture to read for this particular moment in time.

i.      Jesus is the master of the Word of God not only because He is the author of the Word of God, but He is also empowered by the Holy Spirit in the use of the Word of God.

ii.      The book of Luke alone proves that Jesus believed the entirety of the Old Testament scriptures and used them as a master.

iii.      Application: We must likewise become a master of the Word of God, and this is possible only by the power of the Holy Spirit.

iv.      Application: If we want more power in our preaching, then we must have more scripture in our message. We must be leashed to the text. The points of the sermon must come from the text. Our illustrations must come from parallel scriptures. Our applications must come from the text.

v.      Application: God will not give the power of the Holy Spirit to the man who is attempting to build his own kingdom. Sacrifice of self is of paramount importance. Look at how Jesus sacrificed Himself.

vi.      Application: the Holy Spirit will only empower a holy vessel.


The Might Of Expository Preaching Power in the Spirit


A. Understand the Spirit’s Power in Jesus’ Ministry

1. Luke 3:21-22

2. Luke 4:1-19

B. Understand the Spirit’s Promise in Jesus’ Commission

1. Luke 24:47-49

2. Acts 1:8

C. Understand the Spirit’s Power in the Apostles’ Ministry

1. Acts 2:4, 14-16

2. Acts 4:8-12

3. Acts 4:31

4. Acts 6:3-5

5. Acts 7:51-55

6. Acts 9:17-22

7. Acts 13:9-11

8. Acts 13:52-14:1

9. Colossians 1:29



A. Hear George Whitefield’s Dependence

B. Hear Charles Spurgeon’s Dependence

C. Hear Martyn Lloyd-Jones’s Dependence



A. Be Saturated with Scripture

B. Be Steeped in the Truth

C. Be Pure before God

D. Be Surrendered to God

E. Be Separated from Unnecessary Influences

F. Be Submissive in Prayer

G. Be Pursuing God’s Glory


The Institute for Expository Preaching whole series


The Manner Of Expository Preaching Passion in the Proclamation


A. Understand the Definition of Passion

1. The passion of Christ – his suffering and death

2. The passion of the martyrs

3. The passion of pain

4. The passion of illness

5. To be acted upon, to be passive

6. To be moved

7. To be zealous

Feeling what we believe

B. Understand the Synonyms of Passion

1. Fervor

2. Fire

3. Zeal

4. Ardor

5. Enthusiasm


A. Preach with Fervency

We need to be fiery. People are drawn to a man on fire.

B. Preach with Intensity

Sunlight focused through a magnifying glass, There is no such thing as a casual worship service. Undistracted.

C. Preach with Urgency

Now. Immediately. Critical importance. Exhorting. Encouraging. Two sermons by Spurgeon to read:

1. Now

2. Compel them to come in



A. See Old Testament Examples of Passion

1. Jeremiah 9:1

2. Jeremiah 13:17

3. Jeremiah 20:9

4. Jeremiah 23:29

5. Jonah 3:2-4


B. See New Testament Examples of Passion

1. Matthew 9:36

2. John 7:37-38

3. Acts 4:2

4. Acts 13:5

5. Acts 20:31

6. Romans 9:1-3

7. Romans 10:1

8. 2 Corinthians 6:11

9. Colossians 1:28



A. Hear Distant Voices

1. Martin Luther

2. Jonathan Edwards

Raise the affections of people for God, but only as high as truth will allow.

3. George Whitefield

The church is asleep.

4. James W. Alexander

5. Charles H. Spurgeon

B. Hear Recent Voices

1. John Murray

2. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

3. Geoffrey Thomas


A. Have a High View of God

View of God and passion in preaching are directly related.

B. Cultivate Deep Convictions in the Truth

C. Live with a Sense of Immediacy

A lecture can be given any time, a sermon must be preached now.

D. Develop a Deep Love for People

E. Be Filled by Holy Spirit

F. Be Gripped by Heaven and Hell

G. Read Inspiring Christian Biographies

H. Fellowship with Fervent Believers

Passion is contagious.

I. Pursue Communion with God


J. Desire to See People Saved

K. Preach to Responsive People

L. Confess All Your Sins

Sin is water poured on the fire.

M. Preach Through the Psalms

N. Understand What True Preaching Is

O. Listen to Passionate Preaching

P. Read Passionate Preaching

Q. Reflect Upon Your Calling

Remember where you were when God began to stir your heart.

R. Think Upon the Judgment Seat of Christ

Remember that the last day is coming, a day of accountability. Not only what we said but how we said it.

S. Gaze Upon the Cross

T. Ask God to Inflame Your Heart

 The Institute for Expository Preaching whole series


The Motivation Of Expository Preaching Practicality of the Truth


A. It Relates the Truth to Life

B. It Is Rooted in the Text

C. It Is Consistent with All Scripture

D. It Transcends All Cultures

E. It Addresses All Generations



A. Know Human Nature

B. Know the Listener’s Needs

C. Know the Church’s Needs

D. Know the Current Issues



A. Is There a Command to Obey?

B. Is There an Example to Follow?

C. Is There a Promise to Keep?

D. Is There a Principle to Implement?

E. Is There a Sin to Avoid?

F. Is There a Warning to Heed?

G. Is There a Reason to Praise?

H. Is There a Thanksgiving to Offer?

I. Is There a Truth to Defend?

J. Is There a Stand to Take?

K. Is There a Witness to Give?



A. Encourage Your Listeners Positively

B. Appeal to Your Listeners Tenderly

C. Invite Your Listeners Openly

D. Reason with Your Listeners Persuasively

E. Plead with Your Listeners Urgently

F. Warn Your Listeners Severely

G. Command Your Listeners Authoritatively



A. Use the Indicative Mood

B. Use the Interrogative Mood

C. Use the Imperative Mood



A. Speak Directly

B. Speak Softly

C. Speak Loudly

D. Speak Firmly

E. Speak Compassionately

F. Speak Slowly

G. Speak Swiftly



A. Speak with Third Person Plural

B. Move to First Person Plural

C. Move to Second Person Singular



A. Show It in Your Own Life

B. Show It in Another Life

C. Show It in a Biblical Character

D. Show It in a Historical Figure



A. Apply in the Introduction

B. Apply in the Main Body

C. Apply in the Conclusion



A. Inform the Listener’s Mind of Their Duty

B. Inflame the Listener’s Affections for Their Duty

C. Influence the Listener’s Will to Their Duty




The Institute for Expository Preaching whole series


The Meticulousness Of Expository Preaching Precision with the Text


A. Seek Plain Meaning

B. Seek Natural Meaning

C. Seek Obvious Meaning



A. Discern the Writer’s Aim

B. Detect the Writer’s Audience

C. Discover the Writer’s Circumstances



A. In Which Testament Is This Found?

B. In What Canonical Section Is This Found?

C. What Is the Theme of This Biblical Book?

D. Where in the Book?

E. What Precedes This Text?

F. What Follows This Text?

G. What Parallels This Text?



A. Note the Genre of the Passage

1. Prose

2. Wisdom

3. Song

4. Apocalyptic

5. Gospel

6. Legal

7. Parable

8. Sermon/Discourse

9. Epistle


B. Be Familiar with the Features of That Genre

1. Know Its Distinctives

2. Know Its Challenges



A. Pinpoint the Key Words

1. Note Crucial Words

2. Note Repeating Words

3. Note Unclear Words

4. Note Emphatic Words

5. Note Alternating Words


B. Do Word Studies of These Words

1. Study Its Etymology

2. Study Its Biblical Usages

3. Study Its Extra-Biblical Usages



A. Probe the Individual Words

1. Verbs

2. Nouns

3. Pronouns

4. Adjectives

5. Adverbs

6. Conjunctions

7. Participles

8. Infinitives


B. Probe the Collective Words

1. Clauses

2. Phrases



A. Note the Places

1. Cities

2. Regions

3. Rivers

4. Seas

5. Territories

6. Mountains

7. Valleys

8. Wildernesses

9. Routes

10. Nations

B. Note the Distinctives

1. Location

2. Topography

3. Elevation

4. Weather



A. Note the National Life

1. Political Practices

2. Social Customs

3. Economic Polices

4. Monetary Units

5. Military Warfare


B. Note the Spiritual Life

1. Religious Forms

2. Covenantal Agreements


C. Note the Natural Life

1. Climate Conditions

2. Agricultural Procedures

3. Native Plants

4. Indigenous Minerals


D. Note the Zoological Life

1. Nature Life

2. Animal Life

3. Shepherding Practices

4. Hunting Exploits



A. Simile

B. Metaphor

C. Allegory

D. Metonymy

E. Synecdoche

F. Hyperbole

G. Personification

H. Apostrophe

I. Anthropomorphism

J. Hypocatastasis

K. Merimus

L. Zoomorphism

M. Ellipsis

N. Hendiadys

O. Inclusion

P. Eponymy



A. Scripture Never Contradicts Itself

B. Scripture Always Harmonizes with Itself

C. Scripture Interprets Scripture



The Institute for Expository Preaching whole series


Questions and Answers with Steve Lawson

Q:        What commentaries do you recommend?

There are sets and there are individual commentaries. Hendricksen and Kistemacker for the New Testament. MacArthur commentary set. Anything by James Montgomery Boice. The New American Commentary. The NICNT and NICOT by Erdmanns. Barnes Notes for the Old Testament. The Expositors Bible Commentary Set. Warren Weirsbe series. A.T. Robertson’s Word Pictures. The Bible Knowledge Commentary. The Pillar Commentary series. A.W. Pink on John and Hebrews. Charles Hodge on Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, the Treasury of David.

Q.        How about a Systematic Theology for non-scholars?

Lewis Berkhoff, Wayne Grudem, B.B. Warfield, Charles Ryrie, W.G.T. Shedd, A.A. Hodge, R.L. Dabney, Thomas Watson’s Body of Divinity.

Q.        Theological Dictionaries?

Intervarsity Theological Dictionary, Allen Cairnes

Q.        Lingustics?


Q.        Old Testament culture?

Alfred Eddersheim for the 1st Century.

Q.        On preaching?

Preaching by MacArthur, Preaching and Preachers by Lloyd-Jones, Power in the Pulpit by Jerry Vines, John Broadus on Preaching, The Expository Genius of John Calvin, Piper’s Supremacy of God in Preaching

Q.        Example preaching?

Charles Spurgeon, Whitefield, John Stott, Steven Oldford, Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Q.        What hills are worth dying on?

What would I be willing to be burned at the stake for? What the Bible is. The inspiration of scripture. The authority of scripture. The person of God. The person of Christ and his works. The person of the Holy Spirit. The Trinity. Heaven and Hell and the final judgment.

There are things that are very important as well: the doctrines of grace, church elders.

We need to be careful with cultural issues in that they can impair our ability to preach the gospel.

Q.        What advice to the lay preacher who is not trained as an expositor?

Start with easier portions of scripture. Concentrate on the main point. Chose a story. Follow an example.

Q.        Are there times that the passage of text does not dictate the structure of the sermon?

That is where the art part of expository preaching comes in.

Q.        What is your preaching load? How do you manage the load?

Typically four times a week. Sometimes the load is managed by teaching what was familiar. Let other men step in at times.

Q:      Do you ever vary the form of your sermons?

I always lay all my cards on the table at the beginning of the exposition.

Q:      Comment on the earlier sermons of Spurgeon being the best?

The earliest sermons are the like that the City of London had not heard in over a century. He had a simple life during those first years.

Q:      Where do you get feedback from?

You must consider the source as you consider the feedback you receive. Don’t allow yourself to be pulled down to the low level of some small-minded people. Most people who would give you feedback don’t understand preaching.



The Institute for Expository Preaching whole series