In revealing God’s Word, one of the best ways to do it is through expository teaching. Expository teaching is an instruction method of the scriptures that can be taught two different ways: verse by verse or topically.
By following “verse by verse”, it is simply studying a book of the Bible from beginning to end. This is viewed as a very effective way of learning, as it allows the full range of each scripture to be absorbed. It also shows the student to see how the Word of God can be emphasized when applied to any given subject. This is also known as a micro-exposition.
The other method known as “topically” is accomplished by reviewing what a Scripture says as a whole in regards to a particular topic. In order to gain a complete and full understanding of a Scripture on an individual topic, this style of teaching is much more effective. This type of teaching allows a teacher to pick and choose their topic, their verses and their points. The teacher is allowed to dictate the flow of the lesson, while still following the Bible verse by verse. This type of expository teaching has also been referred to as a macro-exposition.
These types of teaching methods do take vastly more time, but are more comprehensive. It takes more discipline to study the Scriptures verse by verse, and within the context of the book. Some say that it allows the Spirit of God to speak with clarity through His Word. Only expository preaching has the functional goal of explaining and applying the whole Bible at their fullness.
Expository teaching takes one Genesis through Revelations, chapter by chapter and verse by verse. The Bible will confirm its own stories through repetition of statement, as a verse in Revelations may not be as clear unless it was referred to prior in the Old Testament. Each scripture is investigated in a literal sense, taking meaning from each passage.
Many sermons are based on the concept of expository preaching, which was a method of the Reformers, and preachers like Augustine and John Chrysostom. Some argue that this method is outdated, but it still confirms the meanings of each book of the Bible by being relevant to today’s issues. While there is historical context that is not necessarily timeless within each book, the underlying meanings that each author intended.
This systematic approach to teaching scriptures benefits young people in Sunday School to those wishing to have a deeper understanding later in life. Expository teaching methods have been ingrained in traditional Bible studies and are proven to be very successful in understanding the word.