Monday, June 6, 2011

Fine tuning preaching

Unfortunately I have lent the book onwards but a biography of John Stott has a very useful section on reviewing sermons. In my faulty memory these were the useful questions asked What was the message? (What message did I think I preached, What message did you hear?) and How did the message come across? (Did it patronise? Was it too simple, too clever? Was your attention held?).

A "PS" question I would add, just to check, is, Was there one and only one message? It is interesting listening to a sermon and to notice (as the hearer) that something has changed or shifted in the sermon. What has happened (I say to myself)? Ah, yes, a new message has begun (i.e. a new subject, topic or theme is being attended to). Let's say that great preachers do not do this, but good preachers notice when they do this and rescue the sermon but quickly leaving the new message, returning to the actual message for the day, and concluding promptly!


BRC said...

The two questions JRWS asked be applied to each of his sermons as Curate at All Souls were:
1.Is it worth saying?
2. Is it well said?
"What I mean by the first is: Is there a real message here, something vital, relevant, gripping? By the second I mean: Has the message gone across -or was it too heavy, too complicated, too boring?"

Peter Carrell said...