Sermon Preparation

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by TheWinDork, Jun 12, 2006.

  1. TheWinDork

    TheWinDork
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    What do you use for Sermon Preparation?

    Do you write entire sermons out? or just simple outlines?

    Do you get into the meat? or just light milk?

    Do you use commentaries, Dictionaries, and other?

     
  2. LeBuick

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    I take a recorder on my morning walks and some days the LORD just begins to speak through me so I record it. That with some scriptures and anologies is usually the bones that I take to the pulpit but seldom is the sermon I preach. I often wonder why I bother?
     
  3. Hope of Glory

    Hope of Glory
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    I used to simply use outlines, but when people started requesting transcripts, I started writing the entire thing out. I use the Greek text and cross reference the verses that I use. I will use Greek texts, and Greek commentaries, as well as some history books and Jewish historical books.
     
  4. Trotter

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    First off, I am not a pastor, but do preach on occasion.

    I start with a passage that God has spoken to me through. I thoroughly study it, as well as any and all cross-references, as well as its background (dictionaries, atlas, introductions). I try to distill the passage into its core components and meanings.

    I then work throught the passage, to learn the layout, the flow of thought. I want my sermon to reflect what is said and implied, not to just use the text as a springboard for a thirty-minute rant.

    Once I feel that I have the skeleton of the sermon, a firm grasp on the meaning and intent of the author, as well as the direction that God is showing me to go, I will confer with TRUSTED commentaries.

    Finally, I put together an outline, fairly sparse, with notations as to the ideas I have under each heading/point. I also include notes as to what illustrations I have in mind. I print out a page or two (as needed) of other texts I intend to reference so that I'm not fumbling for a verse or flipping pages back and forth.

    I tend to use mainly meat, but I have the gift of being able to "put the cookies on the bottom shelf," so to speak.

    If I don't use an outline w/notes, I tend to chase rabbits. Too many preachers are busy chasing rabbits already, I don't need to add to the number.
     
  5. Hope of Glory

    Hope of Glory
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    Do you diagram out the passages to help with this? If you're interested, contact me by PM and I can point you to some good resources for this.
     
  6. NateT

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    It's been a while since I've preached, but here's what I did when I was preaching more.

    I decide what I want my main point to be, I then write the conclusion. And intro. I then go and look for a verse that says what I want and make up the rest.... actually just kidding, but that does seem to be what several preachers I've heard do.

    I don't have a set method, but I mix Howard Hendrick's "Living by the Book" method which is Observation, Interpretation, Application (with most time spent on observation) as well as Jerry Vine's method of looking for the Central Idea of the Text as well as trying to determine the Author's purpose and translating that into a purpose for my audience.

    I spend a lot of time reading the passage. As well as once or twice through the book that the passage is in. I also read an general introduction to the work (authorship, occasion etc)

    Now that I've had some language classes, I'll try to start with the original languages as well.
     
  7. TomVols

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    I read the next passage in the series or book I'm preaching through repeatedly. I make full notes and go to my language helps, encyclopedias, dictionaries, etc., to understand the passage. I try to get the central idea of the text and its redemptive focus. I then check my interpretation against the commentaries and find other nuggets there I might have missed. Armed with the structure and thrust of the passage, I then develop the structure and thrust of the sermon. I will at least use a pretty full outline and many times I will write out the sermon in full. I aim for a full outline with portions written out, but from time to time a full manuscript is a must (whether you take it in the pulpit with you or not, in order to keep my language fresh and keep me from using the same phrases/words over and over). If I take notes/manuscript into the pulpit with me, I make sure I am free from looking at it. I aim to keep my head up 80-90% of the time. Chicken bobbing as it's called, where you constantly look up at the congregation, down at your notes, then repeat is very distracting. Anyway, that's the gist of my preparation.
     
  8. Rhetorician

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    Exegesis, Exposition, & Homiletics

    Gentlemen,

    Amen to Tom Vols above!!!

    It seems to me that the best and most surefire method is the old "preach through a Bible book" method.

    Dig it out the way the brother just above has said. Use that method and adopt and adapt it for yourself.

    But, when we preach through a single Bible book it always gives us a place to start next week. We never are wanting and wondering on Saturday night "what in the world am I going to say" tomorrow. We don't need "to get a word from God" when we have 66 books of them. It also keeps "us from going to seed" or "getting on our rocking horse" about a particular doctrine of sin or such does it not? And it is amazing the sheer discipline it will develope in the Pastor-Teacher to spend about 20 hours on each sermon per week rather than drinking coffee @ the local meeting of the "association" of IBF pastors.

    And by the by, it would not also help some of our discipline to write out our sermons in full. Your welcome!!

    The reason the above method is not used more is b/c it is too difficult. It takes hours and hours per week to prepare that way. It is much easier to use Handfuls on Purpose, or the latest fad, or the latest meandering commentary, or latest "I'm agin it" IFB topic than it is to get in the mine of the Scripture and dig it out. How many of you know Kenneth Wuest "Nuggets?" They are called nuggets b/c he dug them out of the Greek New Testament.

    Forwhatisitworth!

    sdg!

    rd
     
    #8 Rhetorician, Jun 13, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 13, 2006
  9. PastorSBC1303

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    My method is very similar to TomVols. Once I have my homiletical outline for the week I try to do the following 4 things to adequately cover each point of truth. I seek to 1.) explain it. 2.)validate it. 3.) illustrate it 4.) apply it.

    I also write out my messages in manuscript form. It helps me keep my thoughts together and when I need to go back to the message in the future I have everything there.
     
  10. LeBuick

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    What do you guys mean by preaching a bible book? You don't mean like the entire book of Genesis do you?

    @PastorSBC1303= do you preach a standard 3 point sermon? How long are you usually up?
     
  11. PastorSBC1303

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    Preaching a bible book is preaching a series of messages through a specific book. For example, I recently preached through the book of Malachi.

    My sermons are generall 2-4 points, and I normally preach for 35-40 mins.
     
  12. Hope of Glory

    Hope of Glory
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    I prefer preaching systematically like that. One thing I learned in college is that the average attention span of an adult is about 20 (maybe 25) minutes. So, if I'm preaching through a book, I aim to preach for about 30 minutes, with the first few minutes being review, which helps cement the preveious week's lesson in their minds.

    I have occasionally preached when a lesson could not be broken up reasonably, so I have gone 50-55 minutes, but that only happens about once every year or so. (Although, I did once preach for only 17 minutes, as that is exactly how long the lesson took.)

    As far as points, I make however many points are required by the text, which is often one point, with several steps along the way. I don't follow the "joke, 3 points, and a poem" routine, although I do like to start with an anecdote or joke if it's relevant to the lesson.
     
  13. TheWinDork

    TheWinDork
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    WOW!

    Lots of interesting replies!

    Okay here's another question...:

    What do you all think of using Bible commentaries to help create sermons? Or should I create a new thread for this?

    See? I ain't always a rebel rouser. I can start a good topic, once and a while! :laugh:
     
  14. TheWinDork

    TheWinDork
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    what I use

    (I wrote this meemer mammerin' message once already and I closed the window by accident and lost everything! GRRR! :eek: :rolleyes: that's enough to make a preacher wanna cuss! :tongue3: 'Toopid Computer! (no, Toopid me!)


    Anyhow, I usually start with a Foundation Scripture, that's within a proper context and that conveys doctrinal truth. Cross references are a must. and they must be within the doctrinal context of the sermon being preached.


    What does everyone think of Bible Commentaries? I Love them, myself, there are some KJV, Fundies who hate them, I'll never understand them simple minded people, at all.


    The one I wanna get soooooo bad is... this one..:


    http://www.northstarministries.com/understanding.htm

    I have some on e-sword as well... They are...:

    Core group:

    1. MATTHEW POOLE
    2. Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible
    3. Albert Barnes' Notes on the Bible
    4. A Commentary on the Old and New Testaments by Robert Jamieson, A. R. Fausset and David Brown


    Others:
    Adam Clarke's Commentary on the Bible
    John Lightfoot,A Commentary of the New Testament from the Talmud and Hebraica.
    Synopsis of the Old and New Testaments by John Nelson Darby
    1599 Geneva Bible Translation Notes
    John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible by Dr. John Gill
    John Calvin's Commentary
    Keil & Delitzsch Commentary on the Old Testament
    Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible
    The Treasury of David by Charles Haddon Spurgeon (For Psalms)
    WORD PICTURES IN THE NEW TESTAMENT by Archibald Thomas Robertson
    Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition) by Cyrus Ingerson Scofield
    A Testimony of Jesus Christ: Commentary on the Book of Revelation By Anthony C. Garland.
    Treasury of Scriptural Knowledge by Canne, Browne, Blayney, Scott, and others
    Vincent's Word Studies by Marvin R. Vincent, D.D.
    John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible

    also... reason Scofield isn't in the core group... is because I already own a Scofield Bible.

    Now, if I could get all those in hard print... I'd have to buy my own house! :laugh:

    -WTD


     
    #14 TheWinDork, Jun 13, 2006
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 13, 2006
  15. Trotter

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    I've tried to diagram, but have found it merely an exercise in frustration. I hated to diagram English in school... so this is more than I can bear.

    Oh, I can see the relationships of the thoughts, but I cannot diagram them out.

    Thanks for the offer, though.
     
  16. LeBuick

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    Hope of Glory, my father told me that about the average attention span being about 20 min but I guess I am hard headed. I go over an hour most Sunday's but am trying to figure out ways to break my messages into series. Lately, I try to read only one verse as my text but even then, I get so wound up that time gets away on me. Maybe I'll try to cut down to one or two points unless I'm teaching a class???
     
  17. annsni

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    I'm not a pastor but our pastor prefers to preach this way. It took 3 1/2 years to get through Genesis and over 4 for Revalation! It was GREAT!!! What is nice is that you can't skip over difficult passages - you've got to face them head on because everyone knows where you are! I put all of my notes from each series in different notebooks so now I have a GREAT study guide for each book. :D My DH is using the same method with the college ministry - he's just finishing up 1 Samuel - "The Struggle Between the Flesh and the Spirit" (Flesh being Saul and the spirit being David). He also did Colossians and ... umm.... I think Philipians.

    Annie
     
  18. Hope of Glory

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    LeBuick, sometimes I simply keep it short. Other times, I write out a full lesson, the preach for 30 minutes or so, then stop at an appropriate point. (IOW, I preach for about 26 minutes, then find a spot.) The next week, I will do a short review of the previous week's material, then preach until I've hit a total of about 26 minutes...

    Continue this until you've finished the lesson, then start on the next passage.

    The only time I don't do this is when it takes longer than that to get from point A to point B, so it cannot be broken up. (If you want an example that I encountered, PM me.)
     
  19. TomVols

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    Yeah, pretty much. Obviously in narrative books/passages, some details/areas will receive greater treatment. You seem surprised?
     
  20. TomVols

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    Rhetorician wrote:
    You disagree that writing a sermon in full is helpful? I'd love to hear your thoughts as to why. I look forward to reading your response :)
     

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