Text-Driven Blog

The Expositor in the Pulpit – Part 2

NOTE: This article is an excerpt from an excellent little book on preaching, The Expositor in the Pulpit, by the Greek scholar Marvin R. Vincent. The book is the content of his lectures given to students at Union Theological Seminary in 1884. The book is a m... Read More »

The Expositor in the Pulpit – Part 1

When I was a teenage preacher, in virtually every pastor’s study I entered I saw on the shelf the four-volume set Word Studies in the New Testament by Marvin R. Vincent. The work was originally published in 1887 and it remains in print. It is Vincent’s b... Read More »

Preaching Revelation

The book to end the Book is an incredible book. Some look at it as a road map through which they can navigate modern events. Therefore they go slow. They stop to gaze at the magnificent visions in Revelation, and as they gaze they wonder exactly why it is writ... Read More »

Preaching Double Parables

How do you preach a double Parable? Jesus told as many short parables as he did long parables. For every Prodigal Son of Luke 15:11-32 (21 verses), there is a parable like the Unworthy Servant of Luke 17:7-10(4 verses), Trained Scribe of Matt. 13:51-52 (2 vers... Read More »

Preaching the Shorter Parables

Jesus had incredible structure to his sermons … but only sometimes. Think of the Sermon on the Mount. Its introduction (eight beatitudes) is followed with six antitheses: Jesus fights the thesis that keeping a warped standard of righteousness was enough. It ... Read More »

Preaching the Gospel Narratives

The sermon wasn’t going well, and I could feel it. If I could feel it, I think the audience could feel it as well. The reason? I did not have a firm grip on the main idea of the text. My text was Luke 16:19-31, the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus. Origin... Read More »

Preaching Proverbs

For a preacher, preaching from the Old Testament wisdom of Proverbs is like a little boy walking into LEGOLAND, the entertainment attraction dedicated to the full enjoyment of the classic Lego building bricks. One hardly knows where to begin. Because of its ar... Read More »

Preaching Prophecy

If the prophets are the leftovers of preaching, the Minor prophets are the vegetables—the really, really, last resort in text selection. With the exception of Jonah, rarely is a Minor prophet a go-to text. Why is it that these major chunks of the Old Testame... Read More »

Preaching Wisdom Literature

The structure of the text should be the structure of the sermon. This axiom is easy enough to follow when preaching a New Testament Epistle where you can follow the clear paragraph structure of the text, using rhetorical clues to divide the text such as verbs ... Read More »

Preaching the Psalms

Have you ever sat next to someone in church who has a terrible singing voice and just doesn’t care? They just sing it like they really mean it. I envy this person. Without the slightest bit of self-awareness, they simply rear back and let the song fly. They ... Read More »

Preaching Old Testament Narratives

Isn’t she someone else’s wife? David ignores the question of his servant and sleeps with her anyway. She’s pregnant. David ignores the opportunity to come clean and orders her husband to be killed. The stealth of deception is absolutely shocking. Cold, s... Read More »

Preaching the Law

If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder that he tells you comes to pass, and if he says, ‘Let us go after other gods,’ which you have not known, ‘and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to that prophet... Read More »

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