Skill Builders

Home > Skill Builders

The Spiritual Discipline of Sermon Prep

While we prepare a sermon God prepares the preacher.

The Spiritual Discipline of Sermon Prep

It was another Monday and I was staring at a blank screen again. I had just preached a message on God's goodness from James that was enthusiastically received, and now I had to crank out another sermon and I had no idea where to start. Throughout the week the pressure to just get the sermon done only intensified because, well, that's my job. People expect it. Of course God has also called me to preach. And this demand to crank out another sermon comes around with a regular and insistent predictability.

If we preach with any regularity and for any length of time, we know this experience all too well. We know the nagging pressure of producing a sermon worth preaching. We know the angst of working hard in studying, praying, outlining, hunting for illustrations, and manuscripting to produce a sermon worth preaching. That is why plagiarism and lifting material from a respected preacher to boost the quality of our own sermon is so attractive. That is also why we search for short cuts ...

preaching skill Preview

This preaching skill is available to PreachingToday.com subscribers only.

To continue reading:

Rating & Reviews

Average User Rating:

Displaying 1–5 of 10 comments

Charles

April 14, 2016  12:56pm

My father-in-law, whom i deemed a great preacher long before i married his daughter, spent 1 hr in preparation for every minute he preached (25-28 min). When he joined the Lord a few years ago we found dozens of completed sermons he had prepared but never preached. Great sermons take hours of preparation and sometimes over the course of weeks. We, in the congregations, can tell when the sermon was prepared Friday and Saturday afternoon!

Report Abuse

Glenn Hawkins

April 13, 2016  10:38am

Outstanding post, especially re: the emphasis on doing the hard (and heart) work and not plagiarizing. If our job as pastors is to equip the saints for the work of ministry, that means we're not there to entertain or merely "feed" them (which means so many different things to so many different people). In my opinion, if the Scripture is communicated accurately, if the meaning of the text comes to bear on the lives of those in the congregation, then we have discharged our duty that morning. But in the final analysis, what is the reason we come together on Sundays? If the answer is "to hear a good message" (whatever that means) then we really have failed. The answer is to corporately pour ourselves out in worship to our most worthy God. Of course, instruction in the Scripture is the central way to set the tone, as is the time singing and praying and giving.

Report Abuse

Keith Tolley

April 12, 2016  7:54am

Just the kind of reminder I needed as I looked at my blank screen again. Thanks Steve for these incredibly helpful insights!

Report Abuse

Jerry Caley

April 12, 2016  7:18am

Exactly what I needed to hear today as I wrestled with my discipline of study and the overhanging deadline. Thanks!

Report Abuse

Pastor S Kaikhanmang

April 11, 2016  11:08pm

Very good advice for pastors

Report Abuse

Please to rate and review this preaching skill. Or subscribe now for full access.

Related articles

Lee Eclov

Step 1: Prepare Your Soul to Preach

Keeping your soul fresh with God—week after week.
Peter Scazzero

The Spiritual Importance of Becoming an Emotionally Healthy Preacher

Key issues to address as we look beneath the surface

More articles ...

Print this pageShopping CartHelpMy Account