Preaching from the Character’s Perspective

In Celebration and Experience in Preaching Henry Mitchell provides various sermon types. These help the preacher either categorize or simply think about how to structure a sermon. One of these types is the Monologue or Testimony. An example of this type of sermon is when a preacher takes on the persona of a Biblical character and preaches a first-person story.

An interesting variant of this type of sermon is in Dr. Martin Luther King’s book, Strength to Love. In that book, Dr. King provides a modern letter from the Apostle Paul to American Christians. The sermon provides a model for approaching sermons. While I do not think this should be done too often, every now and then it could open up possibilities for the people to really experience the gospel.

The challenge of this type of sermon is that you must really understand the text and its author in their context. This will require following a multi step process to exegete the text. You then must understand the current context. Download our free book You Can Preach: 7 Steps to an Effective Sermon which provides one approach to these first two steps.Finally, you must imaginatively place the Biblical character into our modern context in the sermon.

Have you tried one of these sermons? Let us know your experiences by leaving a comment.

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Sherman Haywood Cox II

Sherman Haywood Cox II is the director of Soul Preaching. He holds the M.Div with an emphasis in Homiletics and a M.S. in Computer Science.

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