Hymns in Preaching

Cleophus LaRue speaks of hymnody in his book Power in the Pulpit. Preachers have used the power of hymns in their preaching for centuries. LaRue notes that some preachers quote hymns here and there throughout the sermon. Other preachers use it during the “celebration” phase of the sermon.

There is something about quoting an old hymn or a meaningful Gospel Song that reaches deep into the hearer. LaRue notes that one of the best ways to drive home a point is to speak that point in the words of a great and well known hymn. It connects on a deep level and therefore should be used by preachers who seek to present effective sermons.

Sometimes the hymns come to you, but I have begun using a hymnal with a scriptural reference index in my sermon preparation. A good book to help with this is Hymn and Scripture Selection Guide by Donald A Spencer. It is an old out of print book, but it cross references 380 hymns with the scriptures.

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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.

Posted in blog, Preaching, Preaching Methods

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Revised Common Lectionary
Proper 14 (February 26, 2017)
  • OT: Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28
  • Psalm: Psalm 105: 1-6, 16-22, 45b
  • Epistle: Romans 10:5-15
  • Gospel: Matthew 14:22-33
Af Am Heritage Lectionary
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