Tuesday, March 22, 2016

The Practice of Preaching: Two Articles

Two Most Important Elements of Preaching

Pastors cannot lack these two things: passion and authority

When Jesus came along two thousand years ago not all of His teaching was brand new. His message of repentance had already been preached by prophets for centuries. His teachings about loving God and loving people, the Great Commandment as we call it, was not a new teaching. You can trace this sermon all the way back to Deuteronomy and the Ten Commandments. The Scribes and Pharisees had been teaching sermons on these subjects for years when Jesus came along. Yet when Jesus comes along, everyone begins to leave the teaching of the Scribes and Pharisees and flock to Jesus by the hundreds and thousands? So here’s my question: If Jesus’ sermons didn’t necessarily contain much new content, what made his teaching so attractive? So irresistible? We find the answer within the first few sentences of the first gospel ever written.... Read More

Preachers, Please Don’t Apologize for the Time!

I’m not a preacher—never will be—but I have done my fair share of public speaking, and I know the pressure of time. You only have so long before your listeners decide they’re done with the sound of your voice. I get it: you don’t want to be the one who puts people to sleep.

But here’s a view from the pew: please don’t apologize for the time in the middle—or even worse, at the beginning!—of your sermon. Don’t joke about how glad everyone will be when you’re done. Don’t promise to make the next point really brief because of the time. This kind of rhetoric may do more harm than a too-long sermon. Why? Read More

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