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In this video interview with David Platt, Mark Dever argues that

if you’re going to have a healthy church you begin by letting it be calibrated by God and God’s revelation of himself, and that’s the Word.

And why is that? Why must the Word be at the center of church life? Because

apart from God speaking to us, we would just be lost in darkness. We’d be on our own way.

That’s why expository preaching is the first mark of a healthy church. Because it’s the Word that does the work.

Any preacher knows that by experience. Dever relates that Sinclair Ferguson once preached a sermon and didn’t feel very good about it. Later someone remarked about how powerfully God had used that message in another person’s life. Ferguson responded by saying, “That man heard a better sermon than I preached.”

I think I feel that way nearly every time I preach. I find myself having to fall back on the bedrock conviction that God is at work to accomplish his purposes through his Word. And that’s why I keep preaching it no matter how inadequately I do it.