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Podcast Episode 72 | 19 min

Long-Time Pastor Argues for the One Point Sermon

Why every message should have one central idea.
Long-Time Pastor Argues for the One Point Sermon

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How can you provide a clear path for people to hear God’s Word? In this episode, Matt Woodley explores that question with co-host Kevin Miller. He’s a rector at Church of the Savior in Wheaton, IL, with ten years of preaching experience. Miller makes a case for the one point sermon, citing Haddon Robinson who said “a central unifying idea must be at the heart of an effective sermon,” in his book Biblical Preaching: The Development and Delivery of Expository Messages.

He argues there are too many rabbit trails for listeners to go down, in a three point sermon. C.S. Lewis compared listeners to sheep going down a farm lane saying “if you leave any gate open on either side, they will dash into that pasture and not go down the lane, where you want them to go.”

Here are three reasons why one point sermons can be more effective:

1) The main point is clearer, because there’s less content for people to digest.

2) It’s easier to remember. Miller’s friend conducted a research project where she asked people, after a church service what the sermon was about. He said, “What she found was that when her pastor preached a three point sermon, people remembered one point.”

3) People are more likely to take action, as a result of a one point sermon.

Check out what was referenced on the podcast:

Matt Woodley serves as the Editor for PreachingToday.com and the Pastor of Compassion Ministries at Church of the Resurrection in Wheaton, Illinois. He is also the author of God With Us: The Gospel of Matthew (IVP).

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