Rawlings School of Divinity
Doctor of Ministry (DMin)
expository preaching, discipleship, spiritual disciplines, revitalization, Baptist
Religion | Religious Thought, Theology and Philosophy of Religion
Highlander, Jeremy James, "Expository Preaching’s Impact on a Congregation’s Understanding of the Discipleship Process" (2021). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 3225.
Traditional churches have struggled with a decline in membership over the past decades. The lack of balance between discipleship and evangelism has had a major influence on this decline. The question is whether the lack of understanding of the discipleship process is due to poor preaching or a lack of expository preaching within the church. The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of expository preaching on the congregation’s understanding of the discipleship process. Ten church members who have been under the influence of topical preaching and five pastors who practice expository preaching took part in the study by watching a four-part video series on discipleship and completing two surveys, one before and one after the video series. Five of the church members and all five pastors participated in a follow-up phone interview. Results were determined by measuring the congregation’s understanding of the discipleship process before and after watching the sermon series. The growth and development of churches where expository preaching is practiced is then compared and contrasted with churches that are influenced by topical preaching. By incorporating sound expository preaching into their ministries, pastors of traditional churches can help their congregations better understand the discipleship process and can thus produce a healthier church environment where church members are disciples who make disciples rather than people who rely on their pastor alone to engage in training believers.