This message represents an unusual approach to sermon prep and delivery. Jim Singleton and Matthew Kim, both professors at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, teamed up to write and give this sermon for a chapel at Gordon-Conwell. Their text was Philippians 2:19-24 and they were addressing primarily a group of future pastors.
Their tag-team approach isn't as strange as you might think. After all, the text is all about friendship and partnership in the gospel. So their unique approach to preaching this text certainly reflects the theme of the passage.
Here's how they described some of the behind-the-scenes process of this sermon:
Our tag-team approach to preaching gave listeners an opportunity to hear a unified message but from two completely different people with different voices and personalities. It also helped us to think outside the box as to what preaching can look like in today's context.
Our passage was delineated by main points and verses where we each tackled a verse or two. Obviously we alternated so that one person didn't speak for extended periods of time. We gave ourselves one month to work on our individual sections.
We practiced the sermon on our own and formally walked through the sermon once prior to the service. It helped to have each other's manuscript in advance. Rehearsing it a few more times would have helped but was difficult to do with our respective time constraints.
Looking back on our experience, it would have been beneficial to sit down together for all of the exegesis instead of splitting it up. One of our goals in doing a joint sermon was to visually demonstrate the unity of Christ by having very different Christians (i.e., racially, ethnically, age, and regional backgrounds) ...
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Matthew D. Kim is Associate Professor of preaching and ministry at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and the author of Preaching with Cultural Intelligence: Understanding the People Who Hear Your Sermons (Baker Academic, 2017).