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Help for the Holidays

Help For The Holidays

’Tis the season to be … what? Grateful? Jolly? Joyful? For many, it’s the season to be depressed. Yes, we’d all like to feel thankful sitting down to a Thanksgiving dinner with loved ones or celebrating the joy of the Nativity, but the sad fact is that the holiday season can be a time of…

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The Cutting Room Floor

Delete Key

You’ve just finished writing an epic sermon that is sure to cause your congregation to be overwhelmed by the Spirit. They’ll marvel at your stunning command of biblical exegesis and the brilliance of your powerful illustrations. This one is definitely a home run — a grand slam, even. Problem is that your finished draft is…

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How to Preach a Perfect Sermon

Bible 15841ac

A sermon is a divine encounter with God’s Word through a messenger — a preacher. There are good and bad sermons, but how does a preacher design and deliver a perfect sermon? Here are 10 ways to preach a perfect sermon. 1. Keep it short The attention span of adults is now shorter than a…

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Hom Blog 07 15 2022

I was preaching not long ago and invited people to turn in their Bibles to a certain chapter. Not hearing the familiar rustling of onion skin Bible pages, it occurred to me that my audience was not packing. I asked Bible-toting believers to wave them in the air. Nary a one. I made some smart…

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Summer Reading

Summer Reading | Homiletics Blog

I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.—Groucho Marx Summer is the time when many preachers get to read books. Congregational life slows down just a bit. Accrued vacation time is often taken during these months. A good book is always…

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Sermons from Trees

Banyan Tree

Faithful readers of Homiletics will recall that I’ve waxed modestly about trees on several occasions. The archetype of the tree is an important device in both Scripture and literature. Indeed, the Bible begins with “the tree of life” (Genesis 2:9) and ends with the “tree of life” (Revelation 22:19). Adam and Eve were not to…

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Homiletics Online In Praise Of Switchbacks

Several of our longtime writing contributors are avid enthusiasts of different athletic activities. One is a seasoned cyclist who’s ridden back and forth across the entire country and probably pedaled every back road in the state of Ohio. Another is a marathon runner who’s completed both the Boston Marathon and the New York City Marathon….

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Outdoor Christmas lighting display

Tell me we live in a post-Christian era or a post-Christian culture and I will agree with you with one proviso: Let’s not talk about the weeks between Thanksgiving and December 25. During these roughly four weeks, the United States is anything but a post-Christian culture. It’s a decidedly Christian one. How do I know…

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The Why And The What Of Sermon Writing 940x705

How to Help Your Congregation Chew Their Food  By Timothy Merrill  Everyone except the preacher seems to agree that a good sermon’s most appealing attribute is brevity. Hands down. The late comedian George Burns once said, cigar in hand, that “the secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good…

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What’s Next For Virtual Worship

It’s the new buzzword in Christianity and I hate it: Virtual Worship. Virtual can mean “online” in a modern context, but in its more traditional sense it means “almost” or “kind of like.” I buy a used car and say “It’s virtually brand new!” It’s not, but it could be. And so, I refuse to…

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