Category Archives: Sermon Preparation

Engaging Exposition, by Daniel L. Akin, Bill Curtis, and Stephen Rummage

descargaPreaching is one of the pillars of the pastoral ministry. Part of the spiritual maturity and growth of the local church is related to preaching. Expository preaching is still considered the most effective way to prepare and deliver a sermon.

Literature about expository preaching is abundant. One can have the feeling that everything has already been said about this topic, but the truth is that there are many things to be said about expository preaching. The book Engaging Exposition, by Daniel L. Akin, Bill Curtis, and Stephen Rummage (B&H), is one of those books that can help every pastor and preacher to gain insight and skills in terms of preaching.

The book is divided into three main sections, each one of them written by one of the three authors. Section one (Bill Curtis) has to do with hermeneutics. No effective sermon can be preached unless the preacher has done an appropriate interpretation of the text. Context, genre, and the main idea of the text are some of the themes addressed in this first section.

Second section (Daniel L. Akin) is a continuation of the previous section. Akin deals with the outline, introduction, and application, among other topics. This section has to do with the mechanical process of preparing an effective sermon. Akin includes every aspect involved in the process of integrating hermeneutics (section one) and outlining the sermon.

Third section (Rummage) is devoted to delivering the sermon. One can prepare an excellent sermon, but it also needs an excellent delivery. Rummage offers great points related to every single aspect involved in delivering a sermon. He focuses on the need of preaching in a way that makes sense and is appropriate for our audience. This section includes a chapter that deals with how to present a sermon using visual resources such as software, which is very appropriate for XXI century preachers.

If you are an experienced pastor and think you already know everything about expository preaching, outlines, introductions, conclusions, etc., then this book is for you. This book takes readers to a higher level in sermon preparation and delivery and allows preachers to experience a boost in terms of preaching. Highly recommendable, a must have for pastors, preachers, and hopefully, for seminary students.

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I received a copy of this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

The New Interpreter’s Handbook of Preaching

the-new-interpreters-handbook-of-preachingThere has been a revival related to preaching and homiletics in general. As seminaries have increased the offer in theological and pastoral studies, the need of more books on preaching has also increased. Most of these books are focused on how to prepare a sermon, providing the mechanical process of the preparation of a sermon. However, there is a need for more than that.

The book The New Interpreter’s Handbook of Preaching (Abingdon Press, 2008) is a very thorough resource that covers every single aspect and theme concerning preaching. The general editors are Paul Scott Wilson, Jana Childers, Cleophus J. LaRue, and John M. Rottman. The list of contributors is so extensive and all of them are very reputable scholars from different denominational backgrounds.

Articles are abundant and informative. Some themes presented in this book are “Illustration and Stories”, “Narrative Preaching”, “Preaching to Children”, “Preacher’s Creative Process”, and many more. The articles are divided and arranged into eleven major themes:

  1. The Bible
  2. Bible Genres
  3. Ethics
  4. Literary Criticism
  5. Poetics
  6. Preacher
  7. Social Location
  8. Experience
  9. Rhetoric
  10. Sermon
  11. Theology

This book includes an alphabetical list of articles that makes it easier for readers to find a given topic. Long articles include and outline containing the points developed in the article. Every article includes a bibliography at the end of it, which is always helpful for further reading or investigation.

Readers must be aware this is not a book that focuses on the preparation of a sermon, though that theme is included and well discussed. This book goes beyond that as topics like dressing and the preacher’s personal aspects are also included. Readers will find this book discuss anything you can think of preaching. This book can help readers to understand that preaching is more than the sermon and its preparation.

Pastors, preachers, and anyone in the pulpit should have this highly recommendable book. I fall short if I say that I recommend this book.

Buy it from publisher or buy it from Amazon

I received a copy of this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

Preaching Old Testament Narratives, by Benjamin H. Walton (Kregel, 2016)

44258xPreaching the Old Testament narratives always represents a challenge for both the preacher and the audience. For that reason, pastors and preachers need to be instructed in the art of preaching Old Testament Narratives as this part of the Bible requires an especial attention.

The book Preaching Old Testament Narratives, by Benjamin H. Walton (Kregel, 2016) can be a very helpful resource for those seeking to deepen their skills in preaching Old Testament narratives. The book is divided in two major sections: Part I: Discover the Message and Part II: Deliver the Message.

Part I (chapters 1-3) is devoted to the process of selecting and studying a passage from the Old Testament narratives. Walton leads the reader through a hermeneutical process. Chapter 2 (OT Narratives: From Text Selection to Take-Home Truth) is especially practical since the author presents a step by step approach for the preparation of a sermon. This process is illustrated in chapter 3, where a brief study of 2 Samuel 11-12 is presented.

Part II (chapters 4-13) deals with the skill of delivering a message. In this section, Walton leads the reader through a detailed homiletical process on how to prepare and deliver a sermon from an Old Testament narrative passage. The author uses many examples and practical illustrations that will help readers to visually see what is being said. This section is a step by step approach and is extremely useful for preachers.

Summarizing, this is a very complete and practical volume for preachers and pastors. Part I is focused on hermeneutical issues while Part II is focused on homiletical issues, and both disciplines combined result in a must have book for those in ministry.

You can buy this book here 

I received a copy of this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

Integrating Exegesis and Exposition: Biblical Communication for Transformative Learning

Integrating-Exegesis-and-Exposition-CoverIntegrating Exegesis and Exposition: Biblical Communication for Transformative Learning

Author: Dr. Christopher Cone

Publisher: Exegetica Publishing & Biblical Resources

Date of publication: April 2015

Pages: 302

Price: $23.00

There are many books in the Christian market that cover exegetical issues and many other that cover biblical exposition. But there are few books in the market that provide readers with a bridge for the gap that exists between the aforementioned disciplines. The book Integrating Exegesis and Exposition: Biblical Communication for Transformative Learning, by Christopher Cone, serves that purpose in an extraordinary way. This is a book that, as its title says, informs readers about the process of integrating exegesis and exposition.

The book is divided in two sections. Section one deals with introductory issues and provides an integrative approach for transformation and replication. Section two provides an overview of the exegetical process and is the prevalent section (by extension) of the book.

Cone’s thesis is that teaching and biblical exposition is not an exclusive responsibility of the pastoral ministry but a ministry every single Christian should perform. He goes back and forth to this idea through the book. Of course he defends the biblical idea that pastors should be capable to teach others, but he argues that this aspect of the pastoral ministry should focus on preparing others to interpret the Bible by themselves. In other words, pastors should lead others toward exegetical independence instead of making dependents. He uses many biblical passages in a very exhaustive way in order to support his point.

The author advocates for an exegesis that is based on a literal grammatical-historical hermeneutical approach. He encourages pastors and Bible students to get familiar with biblical languages and textual criticism in order to be able to understand Scriptures from a deeper perspective.  Cone introduces the seven steps that LGH method requires for exegetical purposes. He presents every single step in an accessible way so even readers who are unfamiliar with these terms can understand. The seven steps section is a great addition to the book and a very useful tool for Bible students.

In section two, Cone begins by developing and expanding the seven steps of LGH method. He adds two points to the seven steps previously discussed. These two additional steps are (8) secondary verification and (9) development of exposition. Then he deals with hermeneutical issues before he begins discussing homiletical and expositional aspects. In this section, Cone presents the seven informal and formal methods for preaching and teaching. The author employs case studies of sermons and visual expositions that help readers to analyze real biblical expositions from different perspectives and approaches.

Cone also covers practical issues such as technology usage for exposition. While the author does not make a fervent defense in favor of technology, he does not censor it. Instead he acknowledges technology as a new tendency that has been growing in recent decades and that can be very useful if used properly by expositors for the purpose of teaching.

Summarizing, Cone’s book is a strong and solid resource that covers a sometimes ignored area as is the integration of exegesis and exposition. Integration is the main focus of this book, and Cone does a brilliant work in providing tools for the purpose of incorporating exegesis into exposition.   This book is extremely recommendable for pastors, lay leaders, seminary students, and Christians in general. I hope seminary professors teaching exegesis and homiletic would consider this book as a required textbook for students. Churches and Christianity in general would benefit from people who are able to learn, practice, and teach the principles enclosed in this book. As a pastor, seminary professor, and defendant of expository preaching, I found this book as one of the most useful books ever; a priceless resource and a treasure that every serious expositor should read.

You can buy it here. You will not regret it.

I received a copy of this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

More info about Dr. Cone

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