The Importance of Expository Preaching

Greg Strand – November 12, 2013 Leave a comment

In the EFCA we affirm the inerrancy and authority of the Scriptures. From this foundation we affirm strongly and robustly expository preaching.

A number of years ago D. A. Carson wrote a brief article on “6 Reasons Not to Abandon Expository Preaching.” Carson notes “Our aim is to take the sacred text, explain what it means, tie it to other scriptures so people can see the whole a little better, and apply it to life so it bites and heals, instructs, and edifies. What better way to accomplish this end than through expository preaching?”

Some use the expression “expository preaching” to refer to all preaching that is done. However, Carson specifically explains that in order to be expository the “sermon must be controlled by a Scripture text or texts. Expository preaching emerges directly and demonstrably from a passage or passages of Scripture.”

What are the reasons why expository preaching ought to be one’s primary method of proclaiming the Word of God? I list Carson’s six reasons (and exclude the brief explanation, though it is worthwhile for you to read):

1. It is the method least likely to stray from Scripture.
2. It teaches people how to read their Bibles.
3. It gives confidence to the preacher and authorizes the sermon.
4. It meets the need for relevance without letting the clamor for relevance dictate the message.
5. It forces the preacher to handle the tough questions.
6. It enables the preacher to expound systematically the whole counsel of God.

What other strengths can you list of expository preaching? What are possible weaknesses?

What is your primary method of preaching and why? What are its strengths and weaknesses?

I have posted previously Carson’s definition of preaching, generally, and expository preaching, specifically.


Greg Strand


Affectionately called “Walking Bible” by his youngest daughter, Greg Strand has a ministry history that goes back to 1982. Since that time, he has served in local church ministry in a variety of ministry capacities: youth pastor, associate pastor of adult ministries and senior pastor. He is currently the EFCA's Executive Director of Theology and Credentialing. Greg reads voraciously and never stops learning — a passion reflected in the overflowing bookshelves that spill from his library to multiple offices. And he could tell you about each of those books! His hunger for learning pales in contrast to his great love for God and for teaching the Word of God.

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