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Preaching: A Biblical Theology Paperback – October 31, 2013
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“Jason Meyer offers a sterling contribution to the practice of expository preaching—not only affirming its historic benefits, but also helping us see how to interpret each aspect of Scripture in light of the development of the Bible’s whole message. Expository preaching can get lost in microscopic examination of a particular passage. Meyer keeps the redemptive context in view, not only providing many ‘aha’ moments for experienced expositors, but also giving a new generation of preachers even more incentive to expound the Word in a manner true to the text.”
—Bryan Chapell, President Emeritus, Covenant Theological Seminary; Senior Pastor, Grace Presbyterian Church, Peoria, Illinois
“Jason Meyer’s work cuts a new swath in the plethora of books on preaching. Meyer grounds his view of preaching in biblical theology, showing that the proclamation of God’s Word fits within the story line of Scripture. The reader will find wisdom on a multitude of other topics, such as the nature of expository preaching and the role topical preaching should play in the pulpit. The book breathes out a passion for God and a joy in Jesus Christ, so that the weight and gladness of preaching pulsate throughout the work.”
—Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation and Professor of Biblical Theology, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky
“Here Jason Meyer takes us on a sure-footed journey through the whole of Scripture, from Genesis to Revelation, unfolding for us what the entire Bible reveals about preaching. The result is a luminous, deeply grounded biblical theology for the ministry of the Word, and a winsome, compelling apologetic for expository preaching! Preaching: A Biblical Theology is a very important book that will be read and discussed by serious-minded Christians far and wide.”
—R. Kent Hughes, visiting professor of practical theology, Westminster Theological Seminary
“Going . . . going . . . gone. Jason Meyer hits it out of the park.”
—C. J. Mahaney, Senior Pastor, Sovereign Grace Church, Louisville, Kentucky
About the Author
Jason C. Meyer (PhD, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is pastor for preaching and vision at Bethlehem Baptist Church and associate professor of New Testament at Bethlehem College and Seminary. Prior to coming to Bethlehem, he served as dean of chapel and assistant professor of Christian Studies at Louisiana College. He is the author of Preaching: A Biblical Theology.
John Piper (DTheol, University of Munich) is the founder and teacher of desiringGod.org and the chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. He served for 33 years as the senior pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and is the author of more than 50 books, including Desiring God; Don’t Waste Your Life; This Momentary Marriage; A Peculiar Glory; and Reading the Bible Supernaturally.
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Top customer reviews
What makes this book unique is that the author shows how "the whole Bible alone can give a holistic answer to what preaching is." Meyer brilliantly and cogently examines what the whole of the Scriptures have to say broadly about the ministry of the Word and specifically in light of what this means for the expository preacher. The ultimate reason of preaching isn't for the transfer of information, but to have an encounter with the living God.
Meyer takes the reader on a biblically saturated journey from Genesis to Revelation and unpacks what the entire Scriptures have to say about the ministry of the Word. He does a remarkable job of conveying how preaching the Word is grounded within the big picture story line of the gospel. Christ is the plot-line of the Scriptures and Meyer helps the minister build a foundation for preaching, paradigms for preaching, and demonstrates how biblical and systematic theology guides the preacher in ministering the Word so that we and our hearers encounter the glory of God in Christ.
I highly recommend this book for beginning and seasoned preachers, but also for all Christians. It is packed full with excellent illustrations, robust theological truths, and insightful applications. By helping us to interpret the whole Bible through the lenses of redemption Meyer helps us to see that Jesus is at the forefront of every passage we preach. I believe that any believer reading this book will come to understand the gospel better, and strive to minister the word with Jesus at the center of our proclamation so that we and our listeners will truly encounter our Awesome God.
I. THE BIG PICTURE: BIBLICAL THEOLOGY OF THE MINISTRY OF THE WORD
Meyer presents his thesis in the first chapter. He argues, "The ministry of the Word in Scripture is stewarding and heralding God's word in such a way that people encounter God through his word." In reality, the stewardship presented here is a three-way arrangement: There is a necessary stewardship of truth between God and the preacher and between the preacher and his congregation. Ultimately, the stewardship rests in the members of the congregation who have a responsibility to hear God's Word and be changed by it.
One of the major themes here is the resolution that God will bring; a resolution that will address a creation that is presently groaning. God will bring a new creation through the majestic King, the Lord Jesus Christ - all through the promised seed of the woman.
II. A SURVEY OF PARADIGM SHIFTS IN THE MINISTRY OF THE WORD
Part two is a panoramic look at Scripture and a survey of paradigm shifts. The author presents ten paradigms as it relates to stewardship of the Word. These shifts are outlined below:
The Stewardship of the Covenant of Creation
The Stewardship of the Covenant of Promise
The Stewardship of the Covenant of Law
The Stewardship of Joshua, the Judges, and Samuel
The Stewardship of the Covenant of Kingship
The Stewardship of the Prophets
The Stewardship of Psalmists and Scribes
The Stewardship of the Son
The Stewardship of the Apostles
The Stewardship of the Pastor
Meyer gives readers a chance to pass on section two. However, in my mind, expository preachers should be urged to press through this excellent material as the author makes direct application to ministry. One set of principles that emerge in Chapter 6 is especially helpful:
God's word is bursting at the seams with life-giving power and man's word is not.
Sin and rebellion stem from a failure to steward God's word.
God's word is a word of blessing when followed and a curse-bearing word of judgment when broken.
Even after God's word is broken, it provides the promise of redemption with the announcement of a coming deliverer.
Redemption results from hearing and trusting God's work of redemption promised by his word.
Meyer works hard to show the positive examples (Noah, Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Samuel) and negative examples (Balaam, Eli) of biblical stewardship as they surface in the redemptive plot-line of Scripture.
III. EXPOSITORY PREACHING TODAY
Part three is the "skeletal structure" of the book and provides readers with the rationale for expository preaching. Meyer helps readers understand the what, the how, and the why of expository preaching. Anyone who surveys these chapters will be convinced of the necessity to preach expository sermons. The unconvinced probably should not be preaching.
IV. SOUNDINGS FROM SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY
Part four includes several reflections that build on the previous sections. One helpful sentence makes this section especially worth reading: "I am not to be a lead questioner of the text as a model for my students, but a lead worshipper over the text - modeling worshipful engagement with God through the text for my students."
The strengths and weaknesses of topical preaching are given. But in the final analysis, local church ministry should be undergirded by expository preaching. Meyer notes, "A preaching ministry with a steady diet of expository preaching is the best strategy for the long-term health of the body of Christ."
A Biblical Theology of Preaching is a much-needed book in an age that is drowning in proof-text preaching, topical preaching, and man-centered methodology. Meyer's sounds the alarm and invites preachers to wield the Word of God in the way that God intends with power, authority, and faithfulness.
This is the book would-be preachers should read before they open their first "how-to" manual.
I had the pleasure of shaking Jason Meyer's hand and thanking him for this book at a recent Desiring God conference.
Most recent customer reviews
Dr. Meyer’s thesis is: “that the ministry of the word in Scripture is stewarding and heralding God’s word in such a way that people encounter God through his word”...Read more
Book Review of “Preaching: A Biblical Theology” by Jason Meyer
Among the countless books on preaching available to the modern pastor, Jason C.Read more