The RCL lectionary offered brilliant timing yesterday, with both NZ and USA elections close at hand: Matthew 22:15-22, To Whom Should Taxes be Paid?
Praise God I heard a preacher on the gospel passage respond excellently to the opportunity.
Two brief 'memorable moments' in the sermon:
(i) an audience hook: the introduction built up to the point where the preacher solemnly informed us that therefore he would now proceed to tell us how to vote, but there was a glint in his voice, so we all chuckled; and he knew, in fact told us, that he now had all our attention!
(ii) a provocative, take-home idea: why is it in our country that we have immense protection for our native (endangered) species of birds, but none for the 18 000 babies aborted each year?
Incidentally, there was no Powerpoint, DVD, post-modernist paraphanalia - which can be useful aids (as flannel graphs were in another age) - but are not necessary when a sermon is delivered with certain verbal skills rather than others.
Again, I would make the point that it is possible through preaching to achieve what I felt was achieved within me yesterday: nurture, challenge, encouragement, education, inspiration, and renewed appreciation for the power of Scripture.
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