Monday, June 06, 2005

Preaching as art

In his preaching series at Sycamore, Brian Colmery makes a case for preaching as an art:

Good preaching is accomplished when a man speaks the word of God. Great preaching occurs when a man takes the scripture and sculpts with it, paints it, divides it properly and lays it in front of the people along with his own life.

Lately I've been leaning away from technique and more toward the Holy Spirit as the source of power in preaching. Brian's post has got me thinking about how Spirit and technique interact. What do you think?


Blogger Peter Bogert said...

Good question, Milton. I have always felt in teaching and preaching that our role is to prepare the best we can. While I know you are not advocating this, relying on the Spirit to some might mean not studying or crafting a sermon at all. I can't chapter and verse this, but it would seem to me that the biblical writers worked hard at what they did, and as such were more fitting tools for the Spirit.

5:49 AM, June 07, 2005  
Blogger jeff said...

As a pastor I have wondered about this subject since the first sermon I preached. I've come to a conclusion--prepare so you know everything there is to know about your passage or subject, then don't look at your notes and see what the Holy Spirit brings to mind at the time. It's somewhat scary at times but it's been liberating to me.

7:59 AM, June 07, 2005  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

I agree, Peter. It seems to me we can both rely on the Spirit and work hard at sermon preparation and delivery. Thanks for joining the discussion.

11:38 AM, June 07, 2005  
Blogger Milton Stanley said...

Sounds like a good plan to me, Jeff. I've worked that way in the past, but not much lately. I think you hit the nail on the head as to why--it's scary! Thanks for your comments, and keep up the good work at Anti-Itch!

11:41 AM, June 07, 2005  
Blogger Peter Bogert said...

One thing that I have found - and maybe this is what Jeff is talking about: The last few weeks I feel like I've preached better than usual, and I've taken no more than a bare outline of my manuscript into the pulpit. The freedom for me is in making better eye contact, etc.

At the same time, if I've prepared prayerfully and dependently, I see no lack of trust in the Spirit by sticking close to what He has taught me during my study of the text and constructing of the message.

Maybe I am missing what you guys are saying!?

1:18 PM, June 07, 2005  
Blogger jeff said...

Sounds about right to me Peter. I take notes with me but I rarely consult them. But it's good to have them there in case I get lost! Each speaker needs to find their own comfort level, which is also why it's so hard. If it were cut and dry and we were all the same we wouldn't be discussing it!

2:16 PM, June 07, 2005  

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