02/12/23 A Note From Pastor Ben

Stan Windham and I were marveling the other day about the tremendous blessing the Lord has bestowed on our church. Not only are we growing numerically, but we’re also growing in other ways that matter, but aren’t as easy to count. When it comes to church, the metric for success goes well beyond numbers. The main issue is not that we become a cool church or cutting-edge church or smart church or big church. The main issue is that we are a healthy church. A healthy church is one that increasingly reflects the character of God.
One of the primary marks of a healthy church is expository preaching.
Expository preaching is the “investigation of a particular passage of Scripture whereby the pastor carefully explains the meaning of a passage and then applies it to the members of the congregation” (Tim Challies). It’s text-driven preaching where the main point of the text is the main point of the sermon. Challies goes on to say that expositional preaching is “in opposition to the topical preaching showcased in the majority of evangelical churches, where Bible passages are woven together to support a pre-existing point.” Expository preaching is powerful because it simply exposes the people of God to the Word of God.
It takes a while for a congregation’s pallet to develop a taste for expository preaching. However, once a church gets used to it, there’s usually no return.
Why is this such a strong mark of a healthy church? Because the power of God is unleashed on the people of God through the Word of God. The Word does the work. There’s a reason the Reformers called the Church “A Creature of the Word.” There’s a reason why throughout the storyline of the Bible, along with two thousand years of Church history, the people of God have been blessed when they have heralded the Word of God and cursed when they didn’t.
First Baptist, by God’s grace, we will continue to build our sweet church upon the sure foundation of the God’s Word. We will proclaim Christ as revealed in Scripture and stand firm on His promises. As the hymn goes:
‘Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus Just to take Him at His Word Just to rest upon His promise Just to know, “Thus saith the Lord”

- Pastor Ben

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