On Sunday I shared with The Refuge at the beginning of the sermon what my ambition is in proclaiming God’s word through the Bible Talk each week.
That is, these 5 things are in my mind as I prepare my sermons in sermon prep. I thought I would share them with you:
1. Engage with the Bible
This probably doesn’t need to be said, but my Bible college principal used to say “What doesn’t need to be said actually needs to be said”.
Each week – I want to make sure I work hard on exegeting and interpreting God’s word as I work through a passage in an expository sermon.
2. Engage with the values of the Church
I believe the sermon is a wonderful opportunity to remind those present of the values and mission of the Church. At The Refuge – we have formed our values around 5G’s:
- Glory (Our lives are to be lived for God’s glory)
- Going (we need to continually be reminded of our sentness)
- Gathering (to celebrate our gatheredness)
- Growth (to grow in our maturity in Christ)
- Gifting (to serve our God in Head, Heart and Hands service, expressing that we have indeed been blessed to be a blessing to the nations.)
I believe every passage of scripture will focus on one (or more) of those values.
3. Engage with culture – the real lives of the real people amongst us and around us.
I believe every sermon needs to engage in biblical exegesis and also cultural exegesis. Listening and being with people to hear their hopes, fears, pains and celebrations is an important part of our preparation. Keep asking questions and digging deeper into the existential cries of your community.
4. Equip followers of Jesus apologetically
The sermon is a great opportunity to equip the congregation (of all ages) how to answer a question or comment they might receive on Monday with what they hear on Sunday. To live lives of light in an increasing dark world.
The sermon is an important opportunity to anticipate the cultural questions people are confronted with. Cultural Apologetics is a much needed tool in the tool box of Christians today.
5. Call all people to believe and trust in Jesus Christ with their lives.
The sermon also need to challenge the congregation to respond to the call of Christ in obedience, trust, faith and future.
I make it a point to use words, phrases and language that would be understood be the people who are ‘not yet’ in the room. That is, I am speaking to the people who I want to be there. This also helps in giving my congregation a way that they might be able to speak similar words to the people around them (around the water cooler – or the staff room etc).
That’s my 5 pillars around with every sermon I prepare is built.
- What are yours?
- What do you make sure you do to connect Gods word to your people?
- What will you include that you might not already be doing?
- What would you include/exclude and why?
I really would love to know.