Why the Sermon?
What is the eternal purpose in this weekly exercise in elocution?
posted 10/17/06See theme
A little girl riding on a bus was overheard asking, "Daddy, where will we be when we get to where we're going?"
That question ought to be asked by preachers and congregations regarding sermons. Where will we be when we arrive at the place the sermon is supposed to take us? Confusion over that question has ruined more sermons than all other kinds of homiletic incompetence.
As a matter of fact, I've heard sermons that failed despite sound exegesis and polished delivery. They failed because the preacher had no clear idea of where the hearers should end up.
Where should the sermon take the hearer? To what end was the gospel given? I propose that Paul's answer in the first chapter of Ephesians remains the best. After listing all the benefits of the gospel, he concludes that we have this great salvation "in order that we might be for the praise of his glory" (Eph 1:12). If the Book of Revelation teaches us nothing else, it confirms Paul's assertion. The saints of God in heaven are shown ...