Chapter 13

History of Preaching

Assessing today's preaching in light of history

The history of preaching with its procession of personalities and schools of preaching is as rich and as complex as the story of Christianity itself. This brief survey will identify four types of preaching that have dominated the story. In conclusion, some practical questions will be raised for twenty-first century preachers.

Key preaching types

While it is notoriously difficult to classify preaching styles, it is possible to contrast the defining beliefs and practice of four main types of biblical preaching, (though many preachers are composite in practice).

Teacher preachers have a defining belief that hearers should understand Scripture. Such preachers stay close to the text and explain its meaning deductively. Typically doctrinal and instructional, this preaching examines verses in logical order. Some examples of teacher preachers are John Stott, John Ortberg, Tim Keller, Jack Hayford, and John MacArthur. Often cerebral in style, teacher preachers want to get information across. A sermon ...

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