Chapter 189

Lessons from Preaching Today Screeners

Ten criteria used by our experts to choose the best sermons

I have the privilege of being one of the sermon screeners who review about 250 sermon recordings sent to Preaching Today Audio each year. It is a rare opportunity to hear a wide variety of the best (usually) of American preaching. What follows are the 11 questions by which we evaluate all the sermons received by Preaching Today, and some of the lessons we've learned from listening.

Is this sermon grounded in Scripture?

Most sermons we hear are Scriptural, but many do not " keep their finger on the text. " Listeners are not taken to Scripture frequently through the sermon. The effect is subtle — the source of authority seems to shift quietly from the Bible to the preacher. Too few sermons actually try to follow the reasoning — the logic — of a text.

I carry a PDA — one of those little hand-held computers. The screen is bright and colorful, but if I don't touch the screen the light goes off after about a minute. The words are still there, but there's ...

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