Challenging thoughts from Trevin Wax:
Great preachers not only know how to preach a particular text; they know how to preach a particular text to a particular people.
And that brings us to the practical side of sermon preparation. In order to faithfully exegete our church, we must know our people. The church is not a preaching station where individual Christians show up once a week to hear great oratory. The church is a community of believers who live together under the lordship of Christ. The preacher’s role in this community is to know the Scriptures and his people well enough to discern (through the power of the Holy Spirit) how best to exhort them faithfully and biblically.
If our enthusiasm for ”good preaching” keeps us constantly isolated from our congregation in sermon preparation, we might be shortchanging God’s people. If we are to preach effectively, we must spend time with our people, understanding how best to use the Word to train them, rebuke them, correct them, and comfort them.
Biblical exegesis and church exegesis go hand in hand.
Whenever we study the text, the faces of our people who need a word from God should be leaping from the pages.
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