Why Should I Listen to You?
Principles of effective introductionsSee theme
Within the first seven seconds of meeting, people begin to form opinions about each other. Opinions that often go on to influence the long-term nature of the relationship. The same thing happens with sermons. It does not take long for people to form an impression about a preacher and the sermon about to be delivered. An impression that the audience forms in the first few moments of a sermon often determines if the audience will listen to what follows.
Introductions play a critical role in helping preachers gain a hearing. They answer the question every listener asks of every preacher: "Why should I listen to you?"
Good introductions compel listeners to listen by succeeding at two major objectives. First, they indirectly relate the audience to the speaker. The major impressions that a listener has of a speaker are gained during the first moments of the sermon. Audiences decide during an introduction if the speaker is likeable, knowledgeable, and trustworthy. They decide if the preacher is ...