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How to Preach with Authority and Sensitivity

You are committed to proclaim truth, come what may. At the same time, you are called to help even resistant hearers obey. With this preaching model, you can do both.

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My daughter and I had a disturbing conversation a few months ago. She wanted to do something I thought might be inappropriate, and I said so with all the fatherly tenderness and respect I thought necessary for such an occasion. She was quick, however, to sense the nature of my rebuke. "Dad, I don't need to hear a sermon," she said as she turned her back on me and walked away. She was 9-years-old.

Her response stung, given that I make my living preparing and delivering sermons. Unfortunately, it is not only my daughter who has decided that listening to sermons has become unnecessary. Sometimes it seems the whole culture has concluded that preaching is a relic of bygone times.

I have concluded that preaching in these days might demand some fresh thinking and an alternate form.

Authority: "Oh yeah? Who says?"

There are two primary issues relevant to the task of preaching. The first is the matter of authority. Those who wish to persuade must provide warrant for their claim. ...

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