The Big Idea: Let's Get Back to the Text

Before you rush to application, get the A(a)uthor's meaning of the text right.

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PreachingToday.com: As you think about your life as a preacher and a professor of homiletics, what are you passionate about these days?

Dr. Jeff Arthurs: First and foremost, I'm passionate about preaching the biblical text, about preaching sermons that are tied closely to a specific Bible passage. Of course most sermons are based on a biblical theme, but they often don't go far enough into the specific authorial intent. So preachers are preaching from the Bible but it's not really exactly what the author—both the little a author and the big A Author—really intended for that passage.

Can you give a specific example of what you mean?

I'll start with an example from my own preaching. I was preaching from the story of the friends who lowered the paralyzed man through the roof to get him to Jesus. When I was planning the sermon series and chose that particular text, I intended to preach on lifestyle evangelism. So I was prepared to list some principles of friendship ...

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Displaying 1–5 of 9 comments

Jason Whalley

July 24, 2013  10:35am

My wife and I have met pastors who plagiarize sermons, and after a while it's easy to see that the pastor is not preaching from the heart. My mother-in-law has the misfortune of buying various pre-recorded sermon series CD's, and preaching those virtually word for word. When a pastor is doing that, I think it's time for that pastor to step down for a while and spend time in prayer and work on his own relationship with the LORD. Otherwise, the church may as well just put one of the CD's in a player and let the congregation listen to that.

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Daniel

May 06, 2013  10:10am

What would preaching look like if we took the N.T. example? Most sermons are delivered outdoors, to unbelievers.

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Mark

April 30, 2013  2:25am

Well what's a writing without a little jolt of confrontation!?? After I read this? I almost cried!

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James Nite

April 15, 2013  10:29am

Helpful. I'm looking forward to the series.

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Billy Johnson

April 15, 2013  9:50am

Very good insight and challenge. Nothing replaces time spent in meditation and prayer in preparing a sermon.

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