Increase in Sermon Intensity not Yelling

Man screaming out loudIn my post discussing Jasper William’s Whooping System, I wrote about the Whooping Curve. This is an increase in intensity that subsides slightly as you enter the sermon close and then grows again to the final climax.
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Illustrations and the Whole Congregation

storyHave you ever really analyzed your illustrations? I suspect most preachers don’t. I did it one time and found that the vast majority of my illustrations were largely about men. They were mostly american stories. The ethnicity of the people were mostly either African American or not stated. They were largely about middle class people and their struggles…etc

Now when you look at who I preach to, does it correlate? Well some pieces do and some pieces do not. Now don’t get me wrong, a good story will transcend ethnicity, gender, age, and these other things and cause us to think about our humanity in relationship to the divine.
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Preaching Blessing At the Wrong Time

United in sorrowBlessings are great. We all want to be blessed. But, Proverbs 27:14 reminds us that it is not always the right time for even a blessing. In our text the sleeping may not want to be shaken out of a restful sleep to hear your loud pronouncements of blessing. Such blessings can easily be identified as a curse.

When it time for sleeping, let the one sleep. Sleeping has benefits and is a basic need for the human body. However, someone might feel the need to wake up the sleeper to give her a blessing.
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Preaching To Those Who Hear

Black Man ListentingOn the Biblical Preaching blog, the author is currently in a series about the different listeners in our sermons. Who is listening? There is the community of faith, not yet believers, angels, demons, and God. The preacher must be mindful of all of these ears when preaching. If not, then we will have a truncated message that only addresses a part.

There are sermonic methodologies that only address preaching to believers. Other’s spend the lion-share of their time addressing the not yet believers. Some address those who they do not ever expect to be believers. Then there are a few who openly preach for and to the spirit realm. But to preach fully, we preach to and for all who hear.
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Prayer And Preaching

Man pray with crossPreparation for preaching requires a number of steps. Have you completed all of them? I fear that some preachers come into the preaching moment having done their checklist…

  1. Pray for God’s help….check!
  2. Exegete the text…..Check!
  3. Generate helpful and powerful points….Check!
  4. Order the points for maximum impact….Check!
  5. Practiced the sermon a few times….Check!
  6. Plan to preach with power and rock the house….Check!

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Three Steps to Effective Assistant Ministers

PastorI have been an assistant for much of my time in ministry. Some pastors have treated me with the utmost respect. I have seen other pastors who treat their assistants almost as slaves, giving them the least desirable jobs and neglecting acknowledgment of the work that they do.

Senior pastors should note that they are not the only ones who are giving their time and energies to the church. Many of these assistants are in part time situations sometimes they are not even be paid at all. But these assistants finish their work in industry and then come to ministry to seek to give their talents to God.

There are, in my estimation, three steps that a senior minister must follow if that minister is to have effective assistant ministers.
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Lord Where Are You? – Honoring the Question

10526025_10152470364916999_5127269588465554520_nLord, why do you allow bad things to happen? Lord, why is pain allowed to run rampant. Lord, what is going on? And, Lord, where are you?

Such questions come to our mind as we struggle with the realities of living in our present world. They are real questions, they are substantial questions. But sometimes when we ask such questions, “the pious among us question and attack us. You are on the road to hell brother,” One might say. Or another may say. “Just trust the Lord and it will all be all right.”
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How to Use Another Person’s Sermon

Green recycling bin isolated on whiteOk. You have less than a day. You have waited until it is very late. At this point you have a few options and none of them are good.
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Are You Serving Slop In the Pulpit?

I was talking to a fellow preacher the other day about the difficulties and challenges of preaching sermons that both touch the people as well as sits under the smile of God. We talked about the inclination today to resort to tactics and tricks to manufacture a connection to the congregation that is neither real nor helpful.

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Bringing Worlds Together in the Sermon


At the end of one of my sermons, someone told me that the sermon eliminated the distance between the Bible world and today’s world. When this happens, you have done your job in a very real way. To do this, the preacher must help the people to understand and experience the Bible world. And to push it a little further, the people must understand and experience the implications of the Bible world in today’s world.

The Lecture Trap

If the people are to know and experience the Bible world in today’s world, then they must first of all know the Bible world. It is our job as preachers to give people enough knowledge of the Bible world so that they can understand it. This is more difficult job today than in the past. In the past, we could assume that people knew the great stories of the Bible. They knew who Moses was. They knew who Adam Was. They knew about the great fish that ate Jonah. They knew about the Valley of Dry Bones. They knew about John the Baptist. In short, they knew a lot of these stories that provided a backdrop for our preaching.

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Where Are You Now?

soulpreach2We are always looking somewhere else. We are always pushing to go somewhere else. Life seems to be about planning for some event in the future. It might be graduation, wedding, anniversary, reunion, and yes even retirement. We look forward to the day we will be debt free or the day our kids move out the house or the day our kids come to visit or the day everybody gets in the same house for a holiday.

We look forward to going home after work and to some t show that has us hooked on a cliffhanger. We are always looking forward, always pushing forward. We always want more, to be more, to see more. pushing, longing, wanting for more or at least wanting something different than what we have now.
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The Role Of Humanity In Preaching

© Michael Brown - Fotolia.com

© Michael Brown – Fotolia.com

Some believe that preaching is where the preacher goes off to talk to God with Bible in hand. Then God gives a message to the preacher. Then the preacher comes to the people without altering that message. Touching or changing the Word that came from On High would be tantamount to lying about what God said.

I am certainly mindful and hesitant to use the terminology of “God said.” Or in more common vernacular, “God told me to tell ya.” Such language can be difficult and problematic when we are not even sure that God necessarily desires what we are about to say.
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Soul Preaching Podcast – An Old West Theology

© Oleg Znamenskiy - Fotolia.com

© Oleg Znamenskiy – Fotolia.com

Are you Preaching an old west mythology or are you preaching in the real world? Listen to this Audio where Sherman Haywood Cox II discusses this important question.

Download the audio at this link.

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