Preaching: it sounds like such a easy thing to do. All you have
to do is step into the pulpit and talk for 20 minutes, right?
Anyone who s ever stepped into that pulpit knows that preaching is
anything but easy. Speaking a word from God that is grounded in the
biblical witness, theologically responsible, and true to
contemporary experience is one of the most difficult things one can
do. Advice on how to do this is as old as preaching itself, and
there are as many opinions on preaching as there are preachers.
Where do those who have been called to the ministry of proclamation
begin? What are the basic understandings and practices that anyone
who proposes to preach should know?
In this new addition to the Essential Guides series, Ronald
Allen seeks to answer these basic questions about preaching. He
does so through the use of an inductive method, which is simply to
say that he starts with a sermon itself, and uses that sermon to
illustrate the process of moving from the first thoughts about what
one will preach to the delivery of an actual sermon itself. Each
chapter will raise a question about the sample sermon that leads
into a broader discussion of the practical and theoretical issues
that this particular aspect of the sermon raises (e.g., What is the
good news in this sermon? What is the significance of this news for
the congregation? Does the preacher offer a clear and sensible
interpretation of the biblical text or the topic?)
Written with the needs of students in both traditional M. Div.
classes and non-degree ministry training programs in mind,
Preaching: An Essential Guide will be an indispensable companion
for all the others who seek to rightly explain the word of
Ronald J. Allen is Professor of Homiletics at Christian
Theological Seminary, Indianapolis, Indiana
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