Nordic Preacher

Northern Reflections on Preaching, Theology and the Christian Life.

Author: Miska wilhelmsson (Page 2 of 2)

Sermon: The Blessed Life (Psalm 1)

faithbuilders-album-artLast Sunday (12th June 2016), I had the privilege of preaching in FaithBuilders at Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California. If you are interested in listening to the sermon, you can now find the audio recording on the Grace Community Church website.

Sermon: The Blessed Life (Psalm 1)
Link: https://www.gracechurch.org/sermons/12178

finnishpagans

Forcing the Finnish Pagans?

As a Protestant Christian from Finland, I trace my spiritual heritage back to the Finnish reformation, when the country turned from Roman Catholicism to Protestant Lutheranism. Although not a Lutheran myself, I am still greatly thankful for how God used this period to bless my home country with the Word of God in the Finnish language (see my blog post on the Finnish Reformation), while at the same time recognizing that a large part of the reformation was also politically motivated. The questions that then remain are, how did Finland become introduced to Christianity in the first place? And, is that part of history, when the Roman Catholic Church ruled in Finland, to be fully rejected as a time of darkness, or is there any aspect that a Bible-believing Christian should still be thankful for and appreciate?

Christianity Arrives to Scandinavia

ansgariusThe first one to preach Christianity in Scandinavia was a German monk named Ansgar. He first arrived to Denmark in 826 and started preaching there. A few years later in 830 he travelled to Sweden for the purpose of evangelizing the people there also. Certain individuals did convert by his ministry both in Denmark and Sweden, but the monks were still persecuted by many of the native people in those lands. Ansgar died in 865, which resulted in the decline of the German missions in Scandinavia.

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congregation

Why the Church Needs Expository Preaching

The benefits of expository preaching are numerous, this is because it is the Word of God, the Bible, that the Holy Spirit uses to build up and sanctify believers (John 17:17). Some of those benefits can be summarized under the three following headings, explaining what expository preaching exemplifiesteaches, and produces.

1. What Expository Preaching Exemplifies

It models for the church congregation the great importance of faithful and diligent Bible study, it also shows them how they are to approach and interpret the Bible correctly. It exemplifies to them a righteous reverence and submission to the Word of God. It exemplifies that our thoughts and understanding about God cannot be based on our own ideas or even the pastor’s own ideas, but rather they need to be grounded in Scripture. It exemplifies a reliance on the ultimate author of Scripture, the Holy Spirit, who gives understanding to believers when they diligently and prayerfully study the Word of God.

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expository

Defining and Defending Expository Preaching

What is Expository Preaching?

Expository preaching is the faithful teaching and proclamation of God’s Word, the Bible.

It is expository in content, as the preacher aided by the Holy Spirit seeks to clearly teach and explain the God intended original meaning of Scripture in its context.

It is preaching in its form of delivery, as the preacher passionately proclaims the timeless truth derived from the original meaning of the text and faithfully exhorts the listeners to respond to the Word of God.

The Biblical Basis for Expository Preaching

The biblical basis for expository preaching could be summarised under the three following headings: the nature of Scripture, the example of Scripture, and the command of Scripture.

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finnishreformation

Finishing the Finnish Reformation?

Being an international seminary student in America, and recently studying the Protestant Reformation in Germany and the more recent history of Christianity in England and America, made me realize how little I know about the details of the reformation in my own country of Finland and how it came about. This led me on a quest to study my own reformation heritage in more detail and learn how it applies to the current spiritual situation of Finland.

The Protestant Reformation in Finland and Sweden

When studying the history of the reformation in Finland, it needs to be noted that in many history books it will be included under the heading of the reformation in Sweden, this is because of Finland being ruled by Sweden (from the 13th century until 1809). It would be correct to conclude that the Finnish reformation followed in many ways the pattern directed by the Swedish crown. But it also needs to be noted that Finland did have a reformation of its own that was in many aspects separate from that of Sweden. Since the details of the Swedish reformation are too many to cover in the scope of this article, I will focus on the distinctively Finnish part of the reformation.

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