Greetings in Jesus’ Name!
I hope you are staying well. Thank you for your interest in O.M.I. It means a lot to us. We appreciate your fellowship, and we hope that our ministry is a blessing to you.
We are in serious danger as the people of God if we think that the passing on of Biblical truth from one generation to the next is an automatic process.
Generations can come up “who [do] not know the Lord, nor …. the work which He had done for Israel” (Judges 2:10), and now for us in Christ!! God has ordained that His great plan of redemption and salvation is to be communicated (passed on) so that His truth can be embraced with faith and obedience (2 Timothy 2:1-2). Matthew 28:18-20, and Acts 1:8 are still mandates to follow along with 2 Timothy 4:2. So, the truth of God’s Word must be proclaimed and taught.
We (as a ministry) seek to be a small part of the great “passing on” project which spreads the Word of God not only geographically but generationally. By God’s grace we continue to serve in this way through our partnership with those who support this ministry through prayer and finance. Pray with us that God will direct us and provide for us for His glory and the furtherance of the proclamation and teaching of His Holy Word.
Our mission continues to be – “to encourage and equip pastors, preachers and lay leaders in the art of expository preaching and exemplary living in the power of the Holy Spirit to the end that the Church will be revived and the world will be reached with the saving Word of Christ.” It is important to remember the end goals that motivate what we do. Faithful preaching by God’s grace can lead to a faithful church, and we pray a revived church. At the same time, a faithful church and a revived church will be a church with a passion and mission to reach the lost! Let’s be praying for a great movement of God in terms of genuine spiritual revival in our day. May it be so for His glory!
As we continue to adjust to Covid-19 realities, we hope to provide a number of brief instructional videos concerning Biblical expository preaching in the coming months. Let me ask you, if you were to start such a project, where would you begin?? You could start with the glory of God, the command to preach, the need of man, the sufficiency of the Savior and many other great truths. But, to have a confident knowledge of any of these truths, and certainly to communicate them you must have foundational convictions about God’ Special Revelation, the Scriptures. So, I share a few foundational convictions below that are critical for the preacher and teacher who desire to be faithful to God and His Word. (See below.)
Praise God for His Holy Word! Praise Him for His revealed plan of redemption and His kingdom. Praise Him for His revealed covenant mercy and faithfulness. Praise Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – One God made known to us through His Word! May we be faithful to Him!
Five Foundational Convictions
1. God is a speaking and self-revealing God (Hebrews 1:1-4, Isaiah 55:8-11). We must believe that God has chosen to reveal Himself to man. Many Scriptures declare this truth, but this is fundamental. Otherwise, we are all groping “in the dark” to understand a God who is above and beyond us. How glorious to think of God’s gracious revelation of Himself.
2. The Scriptures are the inspired Special Revelation and purposeful means that God has chosen to give us sufficient knowledge of Himself and what He wants us to know and experience for this lifetime (2 Timothy 3:14-17). We believe in the authority, the inerrancy and the total trustworthiness of God’s Word. We believe this because God, who never lies or changes, chose to reveal Himself especially in this way for our salvation, sanctification, for our relationship with Him, and so that we can live in fellowship with Him in this world. God reveals Himself in creation, and at times through other means, but the Scriptures are His authoritative Special Revelation.
3. The Scriptures are to be interpreted with dependence upon the Holy Spirit as we use the God-given means to understand language, words, and meanings (2 Peter 1:19-21, 1 Corinthians 2:6-16, 2 Timothy 3:16-17, 1 John 2:20-27). Just as the original recipients of these Biblical books used their human abilities to understand the writing, so we do today. At the same time, we must depend upon the Holy Spirit to receive these human words as the Word of God, to enable us to understand the full significance of these words, especially in terms of application and our response to the God who is speaking, There is a human and there is a divine aspect to the Scriptures, and it is appreciating both of these in dependence upon the Holy Spirit that is needed.
4. The teacher or preacher must seek to “rightly divide the Word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15). It is no small task to interpret the Scriptures accurately and to communicate the truths of the Scriptures accurately and helpfully. Prayer, humility, study, faith and obedience are all needed, and the right motivation to be faithful to what the Scriptures actually say and mean. This takes work! The focus of our ministry is to help those who desire to “rightly divide the Word of truth” in the power of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8, 1 Corinthians 2:4-5).
5. The preacher and teacher are responsible to proclaim and explain the Word (1 Timothy 4:13-16, 2 Timothy 4:1-2). The message is the Word of God. Exposition is simply exposing the Scripture, explaining the Scripture, and declaring the truth of the Scripture in such a way that people can hear, understand, and respond as the Spirit enables. This brings us back to point #1. The goal is for God to speak through His Word by His Spirit so that we can know, believe and live as God would have us know, believe and live. And this knowledge, belief, and living should not be thought of as simply our individual response to truth. God’s Special Revelation is concerned with calling out a people to Himself, and ultimately a Kingdom that will never end. God’s plan is bigger than our individual lives, it is a plan for a redeemed people for His own glory.
May we be faithful to Him!
Dr. David Olford
This week I have prepared a devotional for you exploring "The Mission of Jesus Today".