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How Much Content Is Enough?

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How can we strike the right balance in our preaching between biblical content and life application?

The basic principle is to give as much biblical information as people need to understand the passage, and no more. Then move on to your application.

The distinction between exegesis and exposition is helpful here. Exegesis is the process of getting meaning from the text, often through noting the verb tense or where the word emphasis falls in the original languages. That's what you do in your study as you prepare. But it's seldom appropriate in a sermon on Sunday morning. In fact, an overuse of Greek or Hebrew can make us snobs. Using the jargon of my profession can come across as a putdown, a way of saying, " I know something you don't know. " There's an arrogance about that that can create distance between me and the audience.

I served for ten years as a general director of the Christian Medical and Dental Society. Sometimes physicians would use technical medical terms when they ...

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Displaying 1–3 of 3 comments

Steven Spencer

September 19, 2008  9:26pm

I have to admit that I have often been guilty of bringing out a certain Hebrew or Greek nuance that perhaps have left my listeners feeling that "my English Bible is hardly worth reading." This article served as a valuable reminder not to under-cut the value of English translations of the Bible.

Edward Prater

January 26, 2008  9:46am

Excellent Analysis

Jorge Enciso

May 07, 2007  12:00am

Excellent inside

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