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How to Bake a Good Sermon

5 ingredients for a biblically substantive and culturally relevant sermon.
How to Bake a Good Sermon

What makes a sermon good? That has been a notoriously difficult question to answer. There are really only four kinds of sermons: biblically shallow and contextually irrelevant; biblically substantive and contextually irrelevant; biblically shallow and contextually relevant; biblically substantive and contextually relevant. The last option is the one preferred by the preacher, listener, and, no doubt, God. But what does it look like look for a sermon to be substantive and relevant? Here are five essential ingredients for the baking of good sermons.


The angel said to Joseph about Mary, "that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit" (Matt. 1:20). If the same thing is going to be said about the preacher, as it should, the sermon must say something of substance about God—Father, Son, or Spirit. I admit with shame that too many of my sermons were shallow. They might have offered good advice about marriage, parenting, finances, or time management, but they didn't ...

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Preparation: Introduction

How should I invest my limited study time so that I am ready to preach?