Tuesday, April 30, 2013

What it takes to prepare a good sermon

I don't usually copy wholesale content from someone else's blog. But over at the Parson's Patch  Mark Stevens has some great thoughts on sermon preparation. For those who have ever sat under a teacher who puts in the time and effort to produce an intelligent, challenging, quality sermon, this is the kind of time and effort it takes. Pastors don't simply work one or two days a week. In addition to the hard work of preparing for the Sunday message there is all of the other "stuff" of church life like funerals, weddings, family crises and community service.

"I’m not sure how others do it but this way works for me. The picture tells the story! Mine take around 20 hours to prepare. I preach for about 25 minutes. Some say it seems like 20 hour! I usually start with the Greek or Hebrew text and check it alongside technical commentaries. Then I exegete the text and come up with a rough outline. from there I let it percolated or a few days. I may write some stuff I read the other commentaries (5 or 6 usually). By Thursday the aim is to have a rough draft. Friday morning I re-edit what I have. Depending on the pastoral load this will happen on Saturday. Sunday morning it gets a final run through and re-edit. I never practice a sermon (that is what editing is for). Why do I do this? because its Scripture and God’s word matters as much as his people do. If you wonder when I pray, it is throughout the entire process but more fervently as Sunday approaches!
I’ve never heard anyone regret their pastor taking a long time to prepare but I’ve heard plenty complain when their’s doesn’t prepare enough!"

1 comment:

  1. Thanks John. I have no idea why I missed the post but I did. Thanks for reposting! :)