Number 6, November 1998
Welcome to The Shepherd's Storehouse ! This edition includes more sermon outlines and some ideas on making your preaching more captivating. Check the last page for 3 special offers only available through The Shepherd's Storehouse.
The sermon outlines follow the sermonic process of; subject, the sermon in one word; theme, the sermon in one phrase; proposition, the sermon in one sentence. Each main point needs to be explained, illustrated, applied. May your preaching be filled with the Word and filled with the Spirit.
There is None Like You !
The Man for All Seasons
Get Ready to Grow !
It's Never Too Late for God ! M
Will the Real Jesus Stand Up
[Conclusion: Matt 11:14 and 15 demonstrates how people come to Jesus with hatred in their hearts, or with needs in their lives. Which group will you stand with ?]
The Incomparable Christ
Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is Liberty
Let the Light Shine
The Greatest Thing in the World
How to Avoid Heart Failure
Here Comes the Judge
God was in Christ !
A New Song !
The Dynamics of Captivating Preaching
Preaching is both a gift and a learned skill. There is the distinct gifting from heaven, and equally the development of that gift. Good preaching is a combination of both inspiration and perspiration. Paul encourages Timothy to "fan into flame the gift of God which is in you" (2 Tim.1:6). In the same epistle he charges him, "do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed correctly handling the word of truth" (2 Tim.2:15)
Preaching comprises both dynamics and mechanics. The dynamic of receiving the Word of the Lord for a distinct occasion and specific congregation. The dynamic of the Holy Spirit enabling you to preach. Complementing these are the mechanics, the hard work that shapes, kneads and polishes the 'word of the Lord'. These twin features are held in tension, neither are exclusive of the other. This article considers the some of the dynamics that make for captivating preaching.
Captivating preaching starts with the preacher having something to say. They are not "getting something off their chest" but speaking from the heart of God. Preaching is not a demonstration of oratory skills or clever homiletics, but bringing "the Word of the Lord". We should be able to say, "that which I have received of the Lord". As revelation originates from God, you can be sure that, when the preacher has a word from the Lord, there will be people present that God will 'arrange' to be there.
God has spoken to us through the written word, the Bible, and the Living Word, His Son. The preacher's 'revelation' will be centred around these two, the Lord and the Word. Personal revelations not centred on Christ or not found in the Word, must be dismissed. When we use the term revelation, we are not referring to extra-biblical revelation or secret Gnostic insight of obscure Bible passages. Paul charges Timothy to "preach the Word" (2 Tim.4:1) and in Corinthians he wrote, "We preach Christ" (1 Cor.1:23).
Preacher are heaven's postmen, receiving from the Lord and His Word, and delivering that message to His people. The preacher who preaches from revelation will bring a prophetic voice and speak directly into the lives of the hearers. Before you prepare your outline, "wait until you are moved and entered into the heavenly places" (Jack Hyles). How do you hear from heaven? The simple answer is, read the Word. God will speak to you. Have ears to hear what He is saying. Consciously say, "Lord speak to me, Holy Spirit speak through the Word into my life". Read the Word, read it again, meditate on it, marinate your heart in the Word of God.
2. The Anointing
The anointing is the felt presence of the Holy Spirit who enables both the speaker to deliver the message and the hearer to receive. It is the anointing that lifts the sermon above the level of public speaking so that preaching becomes far more than giving an address. The anointing is a very necessary aspect of New Testament preaching. "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because the Lord has anointed me to preach...."
How do you receive the anointing ? The anointing is the fusion of the resident gift within and the present enabling of the Spirit. This enabling is found in faith and prayer. Faith, that God has called you to preach and given you a message. Prayer, that declares your utter dependence upon God. No magic formulae, no secret ingredients, the simple answer is prayer.
If the same devotion is given to spiritual preparation in prayer, as time spent in the preparation of notes and sermon material, every preacher would experience a greater level of God's anointing. This praying does not necessarily have to be immediately before the service. Pray at all times, charge your spiritual batteries in the days before you stand behind the pulpit.
Unction is related to the anointing, and particularly refers to the flow of words and thoughts. It is a sense of liberty, a tangible freedom of expression that can be sensed by both the speaker and hearer. It brings a confidence to the speaker that builds rapport with the congregation and encourages their response.
Where does unction come from ? The simple answer is the Holy Spirit and in the writer's personal experience, from spending time praying in a heavenly language. The preacher's heart must be prepared, the mind must be clearly focussed and the nerves that intimidate must be controlled. All this can be accomplished during time spent "praying in the Spirit".
To consider that prayer in your heavenly tongue releases the preacher from the tedious task of sermon preparation is folly. But an equal folly is to trust your homiletical skill and never think to pray. Unction comes from the Holy Spirit, your close friend who stands alongside to help and counsel.
The preacher must preach with total confidence in the Word and the God of the Word. The pulpit is no place for indecision or divided loyalties. We speak as the oracles of God. We speak in His name, and in His name we expect the same results as if Christ were there in person. The preacher does not preach from their own resources. We are channels through whom God speaks and works. Therefore, we prepare our hearts so there are no hindrances and then boldly speak the Word of the Lord.
Where does faith come from? Reading and believing the Word. The preacher must saturate themselves in the Word, both the immediate word they will preach, and the general Word of God. Captivating preachers know the Word, and memorise key passages. As you bathe in the Word and commit Scripture to memory, the Holy Spirit will bring to your mind those same verses while you preach.
Friction in relationships hinders faith. Unresolved marital conflicts will restrict the preacher. Behind every great preacher is a marriage partner who has released them to preach.
By its very nature, preaching demands passion. If a sermon only offers information or opinion, then the speaker has not preached. The heart of the preacher must burn with passion. This passion has two directions. There is an 'upward' passion, for God, Jesus and the Word. There is an 'outward' passion expressing the heart of a shepherd for those in his/her care. Out of the mouth, the heart speaks. What is in your heart will come out in your sermons. Burn for God and it will fire your preaching. Be zealous, be enthusiastic, be inspired. Do not deliver a sermon, deliver yourself.
Where does passion come from? How does a preacher keep their heart burning? Fires continue to blaze as more fuel is added. Add fuel to the fire in your heart. Meditate on the person of Christ, His glory, divinity, and willing submission. Consider Calvary, the agony and anguish, the triumph. Live in the light of eternity for we have but one life to live. Consider the need of the world and God's potential in the people who are listening.
Preaching is teaching with a tear in the eye. Preaching is truth on fire. Captivating preachers live close to the flame.
Improve Your Preaching
We want to make available to you one of the best books on preaching. The ABZ of Preaching was written by the late George Jeffreys Williamson, past principal of Kenley Bible College, Chairman of the Assemblies of God UK, senior lecturer at Eastern Pentecostal Bible College, Ontario. Williamson was a brilliant Bible preacher, and this is an excellent volume on textual and expository preaching. This book is unavailable anywhere else in Australia. $15.00 postage paid. Please make cheques payable to Jeremy Griffiths
We are compiling a Shepherd's Storehouse Minister's Annual. This volume will include:
To be published December 1st. $20 postage paid. Cheques made payable to Marion City Church
During the 98/99 summer Bernice and I will be hosting a preacher's Summer Refreshing. This will be a 3 day preacher's school, and will feature workshops on
The preacher's school will be limited to 4-5 pastors and run from Monday to Thursday. The cost will be $145 per person, including study manual and full board. You will leave refreshed, not only with a bag full of your own sermons, but with a sharpened edge on your preaching. Places are limited, contact us as soon as possible, 08 8370 4811.
Produced by Jeremy & Bernice Griffiths for Marion City Education.
© Copyright 1998-9. Produced by Jeremy & Bernice Griffiths for Marion City Education.
You are welcome to print out The Shepherd's Storehouse and distribute to other pastors and preachers on a non-commercial basis. Links to this site are welcome. Persons wishing to mirror this site should first contact Jeremy Griffiths.
Web site by David
Hosted by Naomi - the good advice server.
Naomi's bandwidth kindly provided by Blue Mountains Internet.