Sometimes preachers declare that style is always secondary to content in preaching. The preacher should make sure that the people are receiving good content, and if the people are exposed to good content every week, the people will be weaned off of the use of emotion which will cloud the mind. At least that is what some would argue. In fact, if you do a good job, so the argument goes, you can deliver the sermon in a calm objective lecture style and it will be just as effective as if sweat were dripping for your brow as you yell the sermon at the top of your voice.
Now I would agree that vocal volume is not the only way to increase intensity, but I would strongly disagree with this attempt to privilege calm preaching over fiery preaching. In addition, I would not want to say you must be yelling to be a great preacher, but emotion must be a part of real preaching if it is to effect the whole person and not just the mind.
Teresa Fry Brown hits on another important topic as she presents Charles Adams’ 9 suggestions to preachers found on page 164 and 165 of her book Weary Throats and New Songs. This one has to do with re-using sermons.
The book argues that we should not repeat a sermon unless we “filter” it. I have heard homiletics instructors argue over this topic. One of my homiletics teachers stated that you should never re-use a sermon. In this instructors mind, the sermon is so tied to circumstances and situations that it can not legitimately be used again in another circumstance and situation. Certainly there is some truth here. The vast majority of sermons are so closely tied to this situation that it cannot be used again verbatim.
Can we complete sermon preparation in four hours? All of us whether in full time or part time ministry have limited time. However, those of us who are called to the preaching office have to put together effective sermons that are Biblically and theologically sound as well as correctly addresses the real needs of the congregation. In light of this very real need a SoulPreaching.Com reader asked the following: