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September 29, 2021 1:00 am
Stu is joined by Dr. Steven Lawson, President & Founder of One Passion Ministries, to talk about the power of Bible exposition, the need for a new reformation, and John Wycliffe legacy.
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This is the Truth Network is truly a privilege to introduce our next guest and I will even go to the basics here. What is the Bible and how does one preach the word. Paul's admonition is dying words to young Timothy in second Timothy chapter 4. Who better to talk to than Dr. Steven Lawson, one of my real heroes doing this for years here in him preacher and preach about preaching and Dr. Lawson is really encouraging to try to post this on associational picture in their or you are going at it and it integrates up hundreds of men repacking his church. Hearing you teach about preaching.
Now you're not juggling you're not. You're not javelins in the air and doing crazy circumstance your preaching your dressed up in a suit with a worry free to go help me understand what's going on nearly yeah well stated. Thank you for having me on their knees to the recovery have preaching the Bible in churches and there is a famine in the land for the hearing of the word of the Lord and our conference is all about talking with the basics of what we call expository preaching, which is in reality biblical preaching and there is a dearth of that as we host host conferences around the country where we take three days and let me give you a quick intensive, whether you ever been to seminary or not a Bible college or not.
If you just started preaching of been preaching for long period of time. We need to review the basics, what actually what actually is preaching and what ask what actually is expository preaching and how do you even take a passage of Scripture and no what it says and then what is it mean by what it says and then what is it require of the listener and so were talking about really how to prepare a sermon that is drawn from a passage of Scripture opens it up gives the God intended meaning of the passage and then connects it to the lives of people in a way that encourages them challenges them even convicts them, comforts them all the above and also is used to bring people to saving faith and in Jesus Christ, so I'm on amazed really up at the crowd that has come. I was just and upon the city and did the same thing with an even larger crowd and I'm going to tell it to Phoenix, Arizona do this again and and I'm sure it'll be a great turnout, so there is a desire on the part of many pastors and young men think about the ministry to be better taught in the basics of preaching the Bible so that that's what whereabouts do as the voice of Dr. Steven Lawson got a couple young men here are universities. Yes, we can always north of the curatorial state got stuck.
Data yeah yeah not met these guys settle at a leak in your conference and there just enthusiasm for the word of God and as they think about their future, perhaps even in ministry.
It's an opportunity to interact with them and to help hopefully shape their life and point them in the right direction.
And you know when you reach one person like this there can reach thousands of people over the course of their life and ministry and so is time well invested and so that's what Paul was doing the Timothy was passing the torch down to the next generation and and that's what we do is as well. And God always has that next generation.
He's faithful to to raise up a body of preachers, but stew is so desperately needed today church has become watered-down in many places, not everyplace, but many places and we really we've lost the power of the word of God, the power of God himself, because God put the power in the word. That's why the word must be preached and must be taught and Martin Luther likened it to letting a lion out of the cage. You gotta let the lion out.
Let the word of God out and it will have its powerful effect upon the lives of people.
That's what we need in this day Dr. Lawson will basic you talk a lot of pastors.
The summer different levels. Summary and way advanced in their there. The disciples are group growing wiser than their teachers, and some days in your you're using the fruit of that of chemistry. A lot of pastors and people want to know what is that even look like basically like how where do I start and what is a church look like the does preach the word, not about the Bible, not to mention gimmicks also batteries these pastors acutely know the yes suicide rates are up, you got people hurriedly got this whole virus thing got pandemics.
The wars got politics. He got a victory all you got mass to Holick's and you got the battles of that stuff people mad when you do that when you don't. But what is it look like what is it was a church that preaches the word biblically gospel driven clinical centric is that you try to force yeah well there's a pulpit in the middle of the, the worship center and there's an open Bible on that pulpit and there's a man a God who's been called by God and gifted by God to preach the word and he starts with a passage of Scripture. He stays with that passage of Scripture, and he explains and applies that passage of Scripture with passion and with energy that only God can give to a preacher and there's a congregation of people who have come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ actually know the Lord and because of that they have a hunger for the word of God, they're not sitting there tapping their watch. They they want more truth more the word of God, and they have an open Bible in their lap and many of them are taking notes so that they can internalize this message and in a church like that. They're also singing the word of God are careful about what they saying and when the pastor prays Scripture is just flowing out of his mouth, and they put they take the Lord's supper and and there's baptism that they're doing what is found in Scripture, it it it's not a three ring circus is it's not an entertainment center. It is not a concert it's a congregation being fed the word of God, and it attracts other men who love the word of God Lehman, who ever gifted to teach the word of God. They want to be with a strong man and so they surrounded him, and they become Sunday school teachers and disciple's and small group Bible study leaders in men's discipleship leaders and then there are women who become women disciple or's and women teachers of other women and it is more than just the preacher that that he is surrounded by circles of other men and women who are gifted in the word of God and this is like so important for them.
They get in their car and are willing to drive great distances to be in a church like this and they have fellowship based upon the word of God that they hold these truths in common and when they're together they talk about Christ.
They talk about the truths of Scripture that their learning and then they go out in the community and it just happens. Evangelism just happens, it spills out because as they meet people they want to share what they've been learning and they pass that on to other people and they are witnesses for Christ and in the midst of a church like that their young men are being raised up because they're sitting under the preaching of the word of God and they begin to think that's me, that's what I need to be doing and so they are sent out by the church and they go to seminary or Bible college in their taught and trained as others. This multiplying effect and worse to start one man in the pulpit with one book and one method to preach that book and it multiplies exponentially until you are reaching hundreds and thousands of people and people are being sent out even as missionaries around the world. It starts with one man one book, one method standing in a pulpit to preach the word of God is the author of famine. The land which is a book that's been reprinted emotionally was US only show your glory was got Christian book of the year. Congratulations on that in a new book on the life of John Wycliffe will talk about worry come back and do a quick segment, Dr. Steven Lawson is his name in the ministry, one passion is a.org dock yet one passion.org. Can you spell at one please please go to our website we have a brand-new website and it has all kinds of tools and resources to help your Christian life and even help your your preaching and teaching of the word of God and it's all free and and is for you. Okay, we come back will be the man who who was such a threat to the to the church of the day, the Roman Catholic Church of a exhumed his body 300 years after his death and rebirth and exponents of the state. John Wycliffe talk about him. The legacy of Wycliffe, and he's written. You've written eight or nine of these biographies will touch on that and how you view these resources with Dr. Steven Lawson I'm Stu Epperson this is true, talk, be sure you download the spot gesture with your pastor. Pastors are looking for something their surgeon and it's right there.
The word of God right there one passion.O RG.org more with Dr. Steven Lawson after this quick break on truth talk don't touch that dial what is the greatest weapon in the church today that can that the enemies of running from that is called by Luther the lion they can defend themselves. We just open the cage all that weapon you dedicate your life. Dr. Steven Lawson to teaching and preaching from that book in my correct yes that is correct.
I'm a man of one book. I want to be like what Spurgeon said of John Bunyan on the man's walking Bible prick prick him anywhere and he bleeds bit line we need to be walking Bibles, we would need to know our Bible so well that the word of God. We live in the word and the word lives in us and that really is where God put the power in the last sermon Martin Luther ever preached.
He stood in the church where he grew up as a young person and he said to the congregation and I slave in Germany you're looking for the power in all the wrong places that are going on pilgrimages they were looking at relics they they they thought in these superstitious things that somehow the power of God would be mid to them and Lisa said no God put the power in the word you need to be in the word you need to study the word read the word live, the word that's where God put the power and is still there, is still in the word of God and were in the 21st century and there's been such a departure from the word to gimmicks and techniques, and trendy things that churches like to jump on the bandwagon and the truth of the matter is God put the power in the word and the word must be preached. The word must be taught. All of the ways that the word of God would would come to the lives of people. That's where God wants the church to be made strong and is the only way there's no substitute for the word of God we have the we have a gospel in the word of we have the treasurer who Jesus is and all of Revelation right.
Interestingly, to say this, no one will ever be. Say apart from the word of God. No one will ever be sanctified apart from the word of God. So everything that you need in your life to come to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and free to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ is dependent upon you being in the word of God. Dr. Steven Lawson tell us about your journey to where your there is rid talk about your books, your injustice, echo, tell us about how what kindled this hunger for you at how did you come to know Christ and how did you end up you know before Christ and how you minimal quick yeah I grew up in a Christian home, went to church but I didn't come to know Christ until I was 17 years old and I heard a message at at a high school camp on being born again and I realize that that's what needed to happen to me and God birthed me into his kingdom. I was 17 years old and amazingly, the strange providence of God.
The very next year when I was 18, I began to preach and God opened doors for me.
That probably shouldn't of been open, but they were opened and I began to preach and I had never sat under Bible teaching and preaching. I did know how to preach, but I was reading my Bible voraciously and as I stood up to speak.
All I need to do was just read the Bible explain the Bible and apply the Bible and people were saved. People were converted and I saw the hand of God, and I wanted to do that for the rest of my life. Though I really didn't even know what steps to take. And so I went to law school I worked for some politicians. I worked at First National Bank but I sat under for the first time in my life, a strong Bible preachers Institute. You know who that is. It's Adrian Rogers was a powerhouse for God and I was the first young man called into the ministry to preach under Adrian Rogers at LU Baptist Church and so I had that fire in my bones from being under his preaching went to seminary I needed to be trained desperately and I was and I then launched off into my into I was a college pastor for one year. I pastored an independent Bible church for 14 years and then pastored to Baptist churches for 20 years and during that time I preached about five times a week.
Five different messages and it really indoctrinated me yet further in the Bible the word of God.
Theology sound doctrine and five years ago I came to the point I realized I've got to multiply myself even more and so I retired my pastorate and started a ministry called one passion and I host conferences for pastors on how to get to the next level of effectiveness in preaching the word of God and I began to work with the master seminarian John MacArthur is the professor preaching, and I oversee the doctoral program and then I work with linear ministries of a teaching fellow and RC Sproul put his arm around me and which was a great association and so that's what I've been doing for these years and I have been in airplanes flying everywhere and flying overseas to to preach the word of God to people and to train as many people as I can, and to preach the Bible the word of God and so that's where my life has been invested and I'm now 70 years older than preaching for 52 years and whatever time the Lord has left for me here upon the earth. And we know that he has foreordained good works for us to walk in.
I want to capture the moment and I want to maximize my time in my efforts for the cause of Christ, so that's kind of a quick run through my life. I would say just add to that everything before God called me to preach was all about sports and athletics and I played college football when God called me to preach that that all just disappeared and I had a new love and I had a new interest which was the Bible and the truth and to do everything I could to get the truth of the word out so that's kind of a walk through my life. It will also take up your pen and every time I see a new Steven Lawson book I did it and I get a bunch of them I word cases I do about the pastors you've written on note, Calvin and Luther. He would always guys but why would you write about a guy who's been dead for centuries why a book on John Wycliffe you please tell us. Yeah, well he is a part of what I would call a cloud of witnesses who continue to speak to us by the example of their lives.
John Lake John Wycliffe was a towering giant for God, who lived in England before the Reformation about 150 years before the Reformation and he was a professor at Oxford he was leading intellectual of his day in all of England. Many say in all of Europe, and he and studying the Bible, came to realize that the common person needs a Bible that they can understand and read.
At that point is on the Latin Bible and so he, along with some other professors at Oxford for the first time translate the Bible into the English language and other strong man began to stand around John Wycliffe and they formed what was known as the Lollards, which was a Dutch were the just kinda means mom, blurs, and it was a derogatory terms what people call them, but these were preachers on foot, who went into the streets and the highways of of of England and went into town squares and went into places where people would gather and they would just preach the word of God because it was not being preached and they kept really the truth alive until the time of the Reformation and John Hus was converted as a college student sitting in the library being paid to hand copy Wycliffe's class notes and came to a saving knowledge of Christ and he became the Bohemian pulpit giant and what is today the Czech Republic who had a great effect on Luther. So, the road to the Reformation really begins with Wycliffe and it passes through Hus and it comes to Martin Luther as a John Wycliffe if Martin Luther and John Calvin are the fathers of the Reformation. John Wycliffe is the grandfather of the Reformation.
It really started with him and he recovered the true gospel that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
He affirmed that to the teeth and he believed in the authority of the will of the word of God and he then called into account the supposed authority of the Pope in Rome and which put them in dangerous position in and on dangerous ground and he was even rebuked and summoned to come to Rome to stand for the Pope and John Wycliffe was so bold and courageous.
He's refused to go and just continue to preach and to translate the Bible into the English language and he was a valiant man and he died before finishing the task, but the men who around him finished translating the Scripture and those Lollards continued to to preach, but he was such as such in an influence that even after he died at the Council of Constance, they ordered that his bones would be exhumed and burned and scattered into the Swift River just in a total repudiation of John Wycliffe and what was his crime. State what was his crime is crime was translating the Bible into the English language so that the common person could read the Bible and understand that his crime was to preach that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
That's why they they dug up his body and burned it and actually even before that they'd already dug of his body and moved it out of the church sanctuary. In essence, to un-sanctified ground but that wasn't enough. So then years later they just exhumed it and burned so that's what they thought of John Wycliffe, and in my estimation, he's really the first English preacher of the English language of any note, that all who would follow in the English language. Even Ali Dennis Spurgeon and Lloyd Jones. They really stand downstream from Wycliffe who really was the father of the English pulpit is that you preach in the English language.
John Wycliffe your man. He he is the managing look to who first began to preach with with some national influence in an impact and so we we are so indebted to this man, William Tyndale would come years later hundred 50 years later and translate out of the original Greek and Hebrew. That wasn't even available yet because Erasmus had not yet compiled it in 1516 and so he had to work out of the Latin and immediately was a bit of an awkward translation. Yet it was better than what they had and and then Tyndale would come along and and really produce the best translation that Wycliffe was like the icebreaker ship going first, the bust of the frozen frozen tundra, so the other ships could come in behind him. Wycliffe put his nose to the plow and and he shouldered the plow and and he really led the brigade of what would become the Reformation with you.Lawson for writing this book tells the full title of the Wycliffe book and how folks carless or skin of the one or more of the title and a lot of this title, by the way the Bible convictions of John Wycliffe in every chapter is Bible teacher Bible preacher Bible translator Bible defender Bible theologian Bible legacy is just all about the Bible and that was John Wycliffe, and they can receive a copy either by contacting linear ministries leader.org or by Amazon or going into their Christian bookstore and requesting it is literally just come out and it's been a while since there's been a book on Wycliffe like this. Your prayer in terms of a potential second Reformation in our culture you want to go to a doctor. Lawson these are great these reformers you written about prolifically you preach about you called them tells your passion for that and in the lives of see that again. Even in America across the world may have to come from outside America.
Here, yeah. Well, it always starts with the first of the soul is so Scripture it it it it's of returning back to the Bible, the Reformation was the greatest back to the Bible movement. This world is ever seen in first have a second Reformation.
It will require the greatest back to the Bible movement that we have seen in 500 years of taking the Bible seriously in the word of God for what it is and then for young men to preach the word. Interestingly enough, the Reformation started as a college movement. It was young men in college who caught hold of this truth and had their whole life ahead of them and they had their youthful zeal and their their convictions and really had nothing to lose and they put all the line and Calvin was converted while he was went to the University of Paris, Orleans and Bordeaux. Luther was a professor at an College University of Wittenberg. For years John Knox graduated from the University of St. Andrews. I just on and on and on. I won't bore us with with all of that is not boring but it's it was really a college movement with young men in their 20s and that the white horse in a Cambridge small group Bible study and there ended up being something like nine martyrs and that one small group Bible study and a John excuse me William Tyndale was a part of that the greatest preacher, the English Reformation was a part of that and that the architect of the English Reformation Thomas Cranmer was a part of that.
It was staggering but it was all on a college campus. It happened with young men in their 20s may be late teens, catching fire with the truth of the word of God. Yeah there and at Whitehorse and they began reading Martin Luther, which is written, and move the books that come across the English Channel and it just spread like wildfire. So that's what we need again nose lawyer taught very rarely do I really like just with the abductor laws know what a treat one passion.org view the website everyone go there and by the way you make it a better seminary education.
The most seminaries energize a cemetery submittal in the country. There are still some good ones, but Dr. Lawson closes out with your one passion that website. There's a reason you call that a real ministry, one passion.org close out with your one that is really based on Romans 1136 which is my favorite verse in the Bible I think is the most all comprehensive statement in the entire Bible in the most all encompassing sentence that there were been written in any literature it says and from him and through him and to him are all things to God be the glory forever and ever. Amen. The God is the source, God is the means and God is the end of all things. As of the only response to that can be to God be the glory forever. Amen. And so one passion is really all about a passion for God above all things that recognizing the holiness the sovereignty the righteousness of God that he's the architect of all he is the administrator of all and he is the aim of all. And so, to God be the glory forever and ever. Amen. So that's what we have a white-hot passion for is the glory of God was in his sermons.
Watch the videos watch the expositors's exposed repeat preaching lessons and were let you go because you're about to go stand up in front of my six daughters in a few minutes. I have to teach them on how to handle rightly divide the word through comment on aunt for that. So please come to one of our conferences, the Institute for expository preaching. We hold them in various places around the country. I think it in many ways it's an impact upon preachers and pastors. It's a game changer. So please come later.
He knows your true thought Dr. Steven Lawson thank you leader ministries for real, but all the other in the publishing pardon all the different ministries in your ministry and the folks in support you in men preach the word in season and out of season. Amen. This is the Truth Network