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David Platt has preached for seven hours straight. He can recite Romans 1-8 on the spot. He delivered the most powerful sermon in the history of the Southern Baptist Convention Pastors' Conference. People brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that his shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by.

Okay, so the last item was Peter, not Platt. But enthused congregations are raving about the pastor of the Church at Brooks Hills in Birmingham, Alabama. Three years into his pastorate, David Platt is still only 30 years old. He earned his M.Div. and Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, where he served as assistant professor of expository preaching and apologetics. Christianity Today editor at large Collin Hansen spoke with Platt to learn about the man behind the mythology and ask about how to build biblical understanding in the local church.

How did you develop such a deep understanding and passion for Scripture?

God by his grace provided men in my life who poured the Word into me and taught me the supremacy of his Word, that any power in walking with Christ, even more so leading a church, is dependent on understanding God in his Word.

Coming into this role, I have nothing to bring to the table apart from his Word. This is the first church I've pastored. I don't have a lot of wisdom that life experience would bring. We're going to trust that his Word is sufficient and that any authority I have to lead in the church is dependent on the authority of God's Word and my attachment to it. There's no question that anything good is completely attributed to, dependent on, and accredited to the power of his Word. The Word does the work.

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