YOUR CHURCH NEEDS PREACHING
What’s the preaching like in America’s biggest churches? That’s the question I set out to answer.
In my experience, mature believers not only need gospel-centered preaching, but in fact savor it. Here’s four things this type of preaching does for those grown-up in their faith.
I was a minister of the gospel who for many years did not preach the gospel to my flock. How did this happen? Let me back up.
In the course of sermon preparation, as you consider applications of the text, who do you have in mind?
PREACHING IN THE BIBLE
In this final epistle of his life, Paul labors to impress on Timothy the seriousness of this charge. We can see how seriously Paul considers the preaching task by noticing five qualifying phrases.
Tucked away in Peter’s prologue, we find the encouragement that preachers dare not miss.
Preachers are aware of many things, and if we’re not careful, we’ll become subtly unaware of the main thing—we are mounting the pulpit to share the very words of the living God.
The power of Paul’s words lies in the divine logic of the gospel, not merely in the word-order of his sentences. What, then, is the logic of 1 Corinthians 2:1–5?
HOW (NOT) TO PREACH
“Thou Shalt Not Steal” and Other Sermon Points I Didn’t Make Up: Some Thoughts on Pastoral PlagiarismBy Jared C. Wilson | 9Marks Journal: What's Wrong With Gospel-Centered Preaching Today? | 03.31.2020
Pastoral plagiarism matters because worship in “spirit and truth” (Jn. 4:24) matters. Plagiarized preaching is in fact a big deal. How do we know that?
If you’ve ever preached from any of these books, you know they can be challenging. What follows are five pitfalls to avoid.
I’ll discuss ways you shouldn’t preach historical narrative, illustrating each point by primarily looking at 1 Samuel 4–7: the battle of Aphek, the conflict between Dagon and Yahweh, and the battle of Ebenezer. If you haven’t read those chapters in a while, I’d encourage you to give them a look.
Don’t preach the Psalms in isolation—from their immediate or broad context. May God bless his Word in your mouth, and may the sentiments in the Psalms be the heartbeat of God’s people.
Preaching faithfully from the Old Testament is always a challenge. But preaching faithfully from the Old Testament Prophets is perhaps most challenging of all.
When was the last time you preached through wisdom literature?
The Gospels give us beautiful portraits of Jesus; they give us rich theology. But they come with their own set of hermeneutical and homiletical challenges—challenges we must know how to navigate to faithfully proclaim Christ.
It’s really easy to deceive ourselves into thinking we are faithfully preaching the Word when we actually are preaching our own thoughts.
All of us—not just preachers—should beware bad biblical theology. But what exactly does bad biblical theology look like?
The solution is not to jettison imitation but to look again at Scripture, letting Scripture’s own interpretation guide our proclamation.
Allegory is something less than exposition. It’s difficult to know where to draw the line. How far is too far?
HOW TO PREACH
What comes to your mind when you imagine a Puritan pastor in the pulpit? Long, boring sermons? Monotone diatribes?
This approach to reading Scripture doesn’t mean we’ll perfectly understand or apply God’s Word. Scripture is perfect; interpreters aren’t
Sometimes the road to Christ is wider, and sometimes it’s narrower. But it’s always there, and the faithful preacher will call believers and unbelievers alike to repentance and faith whenever the Book is opened.
I’ve been in ministry for about ten years. The first half of that decade I preached largely in chinos, a v-neck sweater, and boat shoes. The second half of that decade I’ve preached largely in tracksuit-bottoms, t-shirts, and trainers.
The preacher’s task is to hold up reality as the Bible presents it, and to ask how it compares to what his hearers have been calling reality. He asks if all the promises that sin has been making to them have turned out to be true.
I can’t think of a better venue for discipleship and leadership development than a weekly Sermon Application Team. And after five years, I can’t imagine writing a sermon without them.
How long should you preach on Sunday?
Any preaching that is distinctively Christian must keep listeners from confusing, or inverting, our “who” and our “do.”