6 Qualities of an Effective Sermon

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6 Qualities of an Effective Sermon

!.  Biblical Accuracy         cannot stress this one enough      don’t know how many messages that we here sometimes that we have to question it       Its one thing to take a passage of scripture and to preach it   but be sure you know what the context is     Be sure you are not imposing your beliefs or your thoughts  or a particular situation going on in your life or even in the life of the church upon a passage that really was not speaking to that issue   when it was first written or first preached   and sometimes People do that    and it’s a gross error      some sermons are Christian    but they are not necessarily biblical   (ex) 

They don’t come from sound exegesis   that comes the text     what did the scripture mean then     you have to know the then before you can make an application to now 

2.  Authentic Delivery -  the preacher must be real    must be spoken to by that message    must have a passion to get that word out to the people   God has spoken to him or her about that issue    has placed that message within the preacher heart   and the people can feel it     they don’t just hear the word   they don’t just see a man/woman standing in the pulpit    but they can actually feel the authenticity of that delivery    in that God has moved     anointed  him/her the preachers life   and they are moved with compassion and with passion to get that message across to the people that God has placed on his/her heart

3. Appropriate Relevancy-    that means that that message is directed to the needs of the people        the people don’t care what happened to the Jebusites  Hittities  unless they know it can make a difference in their lives     God’s word is relevant     you don’t have to have a  lot of gimmicks    the bible is your relevancy    relevancy has to come across      directed to the needs of the people

4.  Functional Structure -   you must have a rhyme and reason       may not be 3 points   but must have a structure    you may preach a narrative sermon    where you preach first person        

Example:  going into character   sharing a monologue    in Acts 12  when Peter was in Prison      and beginning you can say something like     Have you ever had one of those nights   when you just couldn’t sleep    you had a hard day    you couldn’t get off your mind   what was going to happen tomorrow    Maybe you just had too much on your mind to rest well       so you just begin to go on and take on the persona of Peter   as he was trying to sleep one night      maybe thinking of the many ways that he had denied the Lord    facing death threats   wondering if he would see the light of another  day    and then an angel came and broke him out of prison      How God moved in the life of Peter     and Peter tells us  that your can Trust the Lord    because He hears your Prayers    He sees your predicament  and He knows your problems    He can deal with them with His Power

And if you start just talking like that   it might seem like there is not a lot of structure when you start    and you just talking   but you do have structure   and if you don’t have structure you will get lost    and if the people  don’t see where you are going   they are going to get lost      read it   read it     highlight it    read it   if it doesn’t make sense to you  its not going to all of a sudden make sense when you get in the pulpit

Make the message easy to listen to     not watering down God’s word   but make it plain     be functional in the art of building a sermon   that’s what hermeletics is all about

5.  Appropriate Style -   goes hand in hand with number 4       be familiar with the people you are preaching too       if you are talking to young people    you may speak differently than you do with adults   or senior adults    exegete your audience         Paul could speak to all audiences       be sure that the style your utilize is appropriate

6.  Communicative delivery    we talked about an authentic delivery where you come across as real to the people   but now a communicative delivery and that simply means that you communicate the message     You get the message across with both your voice  and your body      You have the right emphasis    You have the right articulation   the right  intonation with your voice    you have the right gestures with your body   the right kind of eye contact     you working your voice and your body together     you are dialoguing with people    communication is taking place        Pastor Walter Brown calls it a Proclamational Triangle   from God to you to the people       messager sends the messager to decode the message

Textbook definition   it requires at least too people   communication is taking place   you are with at least one other person    but the goal is your are communication with everyone in the room

6 things for a Sermon with IMPACT    this is an acrostic   IMPACT

1.      Interesting   

2.      Motivating

3.      Prepared

4.      Authentic

5.      Clear

6.       Targeted

Just jot that down    on your notes  outline    manuscript    does this sermon have impact         and if its weak in one of those areas  maybe you need to go back an work on it some more    make an adjustment  

Preparation of the Sermon

6 sounds steps for Biblical Interpretation

1.     Have concern for the text   -        be familiar with the historical setting   the context     who wrote it      who read it     if it was proclaimed  who heard it   what was the culture   what was the setting   where did it take place     all of those things   you need to have a great concern for the text   -  that’s part of the exegetical concern

2.     Consideration of Context  -    this is the literal  physical context of a passage of scripture        John 3:16    what comes before John 3:16   what is said after   what place does it  have in that chapter         what place does it have in the book       what place does it have in the New Testament    as well as the bible as a whole      have consideration for the context     see how that passage fits in the whole   and if you don’t do that    you will take a passage out of context  and impose your thoughts  your beliefs   your situation upon that passage     when  that passage is a good passage     God passage     but you are preaching what you want it to say   you are adding to   and there is a word for that     called   Isogesis    where instead of reading or pulling out of the text   you read into the text         error that many times occurs    it’s a pulpit crime    if you have concern for the text  and consideration for the context   you will avoid isogesis      

3.    A concern for literature  type   - All writings in bible are not comprised of same literature type    like when Jesus says   I am the way    the truth and the life  no man comes unto the father   but by me    that’s literal    no other way    He’s the only savior    but then when Jesus says    if your right eye offends you   pluck it out          well we know  that Jesus doesn’t literally mean to go and pluck it out    He’s using   Hyperbole   an exaggerative type of language     He’s serious      He means it    but there is a type of literature   we have the parables    we have poetry    the Psalms     Prophetic    Wisdom  Ecceleatics  Proverbs    the Epistles the letters of Paul         the Gospels   the Synoptic Gospels     Appocolypitic  - Daniel   Revelation      and you need to be familiar with the type of literature   so you can have the proper concern for the text  and consideration of the context  so that the message that you give to the people is accurate and appropriate  and get God’s word across

4.     Care for the Lexicall information     that means you study the words   the phrases     the structure   the uses with the word       Hebrew      Greek     be familiar with those words 

5.    Consideration for Gramatical relationships-    very similar to number 4     the grammar of the parts of speech         verb tenses      look into sentence structure      

6.    Care of following the flow the structure -      every passage of scripture has a flow     the order of events     go with the flow of the scripture   if it seems out of order   go with the flow of the scripture      so you can see why    

Developing the Sermon

Preparing a message from Scratch -  Prayer  Meditate- Listen to the Lord

Now this Homiletics   the study of the science of building a sermon   the Art of Preaching    you may not use this      nobody has arrived    but this is a starting place   and you may come up with your own way         or you may add to  or change

Always maintain a teachable spirit       library    books   listen to others have opportunity    go to conferences    I love preaching          we need to continually pray   God helps us o preach better

Developmental Method of Sermon Preparation

Building Sermons to Meet People’s Needs         Harold T. Bryson,  James C. Taylor Broadman Press 1980

I’ll give you these   and maybe an example

1.     ETS- Essence of the text in a Sentence -    this is where you start     you open up your bible    write your best thought      then this is 15 words are less in the past tense  which gives a summary of that text         on simple sentence   15 words are less in the past tense  (that important)  this is the exegetical dimension    the then    and it will give a summary of the text       remember the text is most of the usually catalyst  for the sermon    maybe as you are just reading in your devotion    and you come across something  most of the time   the text   is what propels you to the sermon      and if you have a notebook     a tape recorder   you are studying   systematically   and you can write it down     that’s a sermon   and then go back  see it  and that text will be the catalyst for the sermon      there are many possibilities in any given text  because of the dymanic the person reading it    God’s word is alive           as you develop the sermon  most of the time this is where you will start             then you may deviate from this   after time   but this is an easy way

2.    ESS-Essence of Sermon in a Sentence-    some books call this the proposition       I call it sermon in a sentence     you ought to be able to give the sermon in a sentence      and you give it in the present or future tense       you are giving the audience the promise of future development         this is something you will develop   throughout the message

3.    OSS-Obejective of the Sermon in a sentence        the OSS is one simple sentence in 15 words or less which states what the preacher what the people to do     the big idea        the so what       as a result of the sermon      what do you want the people to do with this message          once you have found out what the text said then     in the ETS,    and what you want to say now   the ESS  the essence of your sermon in a sentence    what you want to do   what you plan to develop   and then the OSS   what do you want people to do with it

And that’s one of the things that we miss it as preachers sometimes    when we have given all the facts      here is what the bible says     it is relevant   but you have to give them  what you want them to do with what you gave them            proper application            the OSS needs to be in the Psycho Moto demain     you don’t just want them to understand   or feel a certain way    you want them to do something           Do something with it     they don’t just say     whew   that was a good word           but what are you going to do with it     Do something   that’s the purpose of the OSS

4.    PQ (probing question)  Probing Question asked to the ESS and answered by the points of the sermon        we do that in our exercise      it’s a question asked to the ESS  and be answered by the points of sermon    as you asked this question   you are going to be probing your proposition      probing you ESS    and every point need to be an answer to your probing question and that answer should be on to better answer and explain your ESS to your congregation     Why    Who   How   Which   When   to What extent       

5.    UW- (Unifying word)   key word   -  a plural noun or adjective which characterizes all major divisions or points of the sermon  

Example      Preacher says   lets examine some charactricts of the Christian life   let look at three vital steps to effective prayer      what is the unifying word     (steps)      characteristics   will be a unifying word      they united the points of the sermon      helps you stay on target

6.    Development  -  all ideas commonly known as points    or the outline   the points or the outline of your sermon will be what will make up the development of that message    and each point should answer the probing question by way of the unifying word     each of your points should enable you to more completely answer your probing question    that’s the test of unity  within your sermon           every points should share these qualities     it should be  number 1   Complete     2. Parallel 3.  Progressive  4.  Proportionate  and 5. Mutually Exclusive     that’s the test of unity in the development of a sermon      

In the development   the points must be complete before you move on to another point      or you don’t need to move on         if you have too many points in a sermon   its pointless        should really only be one point   but all the points should point to that one point    the OSS

They need to be pararrell      in such a way  that it makes sense to the congregation    it systematic   in such a way they can follow you

Should be a natural progression    and the quality of proportion – don’t put all your time on number one    than they say a sentence about number two  and number three     but try and balance your information evenly among the points

The need to be mutually exclusive        goes back to the points being complete

Expansion- includes contents that go into the major divisions     where you subpoints  or minor points come into play     your development is your outline   the expansion is the meat  that goes into those major divisions    subpoints   minor points   putting meat onto the bones of the skeleton of your outline

Minor points  need to complete   parrarell   proportionate  and mutually exclusive  

Introduction -   means of beginning the sermon to lead people to a point  and it leads to the development       3 segments within the introduction

1.     Attention getting segment -     begin where people are     a quotation  a  news item   current event     maybe a question     but you want to say something to get there attention right off the bat

2.    Texual segment -  it takes the audience after getting there attention  and its here you will use the ETS     you will utilize the ETS within the texual segment of the introduction

3.    Relational segment-  where you relate the attention getting and the texual segment to the present audience using the ESS the PQ and the UW     we utilize the essence of a sermon in a sentence   the probing question and the unifying word in the relational segment     so you can get the attention getting segment  and the texual segment working together relating those to your audience           I’ll show you this in a moment

4.    Conclusion – a means of leading people from the point to action    they have heard your point      you have made the point   you developed    expanded   now they need to do something with it

1.    Reproduction section – a review of the idea of the points   it not just a restating of the points      where you say  once again   number 1 2 3   its reviewing the idea of the sermon     reminding them of the ess and  

2.    Application section of conclusion-   you utilize the OSS   and maybe us an illustration

3.    Invitation section- draws the audience to a response  -  use the OSS in invitation   this is what I want you to do   now I’m giving you a chance to do it

Transitions -  a means of creating movements within a sermon   transition from introduction   to proposition  to your points   to conclusion

This leads the congregation     3 ways to do transition

1.    Compound sentence – ex,  we have seen one advantage of preserving faith  now lest consider another     one part of the sentence  then the last part of the sentence that moves to the next point

2.    Connection word or phrase transition-        the connection word   like   first of all       2ndly       thirdly            in addition to   or not only 

3.    A Question -   ask a question  before moving on             advantages   you have given one     and then you say    what is another advantage of

Example of the developmental Method of Sermon Preparation

Text:   Psalm 51:1-17   

ETS   David prayed to God in order to experience revival in his heart

ESS  Christians can experience revival in their heart

OSS  I want hearers to experience revival in their heart

PQ   What steps can be taken to experience revival in the heart

UW  Steps


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