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Fighting for your congregation's imagination (part 2)

Preaching for spiritual formation means casting a vision for a new way of life.

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This is part two of a two-part series. In part one Skye described preaching as the primary means of casting a vision of life in the Kingdom of God.

PreachingToday.com: Compare a traditional homiletical approach to Philippians 4:19—"My God will supply all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus"—with an approach emphasizing spiritual formation.

Skye Jethani: The traditional approach would be to focus on God's promise to supply all our material needs. But the spiritual formation component in this passage is worry. We live in a society that keeps us scared about finances and security, so that we feel we always have to accumulate more. Jesus tells us not to worry about tomorrow; God will take care of it.

If I were preaching this passage, I would try to paint a picture of a life without worry. I would ask, "What would your life look like if you didn't worry?" That gets back to the character of God himself, which is Jesus' point in the Sermon on the Mount: If God ...

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mel dianga

February 26, 2008  2:47am

Thank you Skye for reminding me that preaching alone will not accomplish what the preacher intends to accomplish. I agree there must be means or program that will drive people to apply the Word.

Wayne Polk

November 20, 2007  6:45pm

Where do I find part one? Was it in a previous issue ?

Daniel DeVilder

November 06, 2007  12:00am

He has given me the vision for what can happen . . . and left me wanting more specifics on how to work it out. I don't say that sarcastically, but tongue in cheek with a bit of hope that carrying out that vision--though not simple--can be a powerful force for the growth and impact of the church. His content reminded me of two books in particular that might form the basis of what he said: The Big Idea, by Dave Ferguson, and Renovation of the Heart, by Dallas Willard (who address V, I, M). Thanks Skye, and PT for the fine interview. I am growing closer to making those changes in my own setting. I am still interested in whether there is a role for "transparant hermeneutic" in the vision sermon. Do we just declare the vision, or do we help people understand how we get it from the text? In other words, is it helpful and feasible to help people see how our message IS rooted in the Word of God?

dawson brooks

November 03, 2007  11:22am

thanks Skye, - vision - intention - and means was particularly helpful... also, getting tothe root of the issue - your example of worry and how to deconstruct worry out of our lives.

Michael Knott

November 03, 2007  10:24am

Great work, Skye. I've enjoyed both articles tremendously.

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