Illustration

The Narrative and Illustrations: Should Preachers Illustrate a Story with a Story?

Charles Spurgeon said, “It is impossible to lay down a rule as to how much adornment shall be found in each discourse: every man must judge for himself in that matter.”[1]Charles H. Spurgeon, Lectures to My Students, reprint (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1979)... Read More »

How to Make Sermon Illustrations Genuine

Every preacher understands the struggle and rush of sermon preparation because Sunday is coming. Whether you are a young pastor just starting out in your first church as senior pastor well-established in the pulpit, we all face the daily grind of ministry and ... Read More »

How to Make Sermon Illustrations Simple

I’ve heard it said that a story is “a container for our identities.” What we are charged to do with each sermon is craft yet another container for our shared identity as the family of God at a local church in a particular context. And the approach to ser... Read More »

How to Make Sermon Illustrations Accurate

The preacher’s goal is to proclaim the Word of God in such a way that the people connect with, absorb, and respond to the life change that the text demands. This must begin with a clear exposition of the text, but good illustrations help the preacher deliver... Read More »

How to Make Sermon Illustrations Appealing

As a former athlete, athletic analogies and sports stories perk up my ears. My IT expert pew-neighbor may not care at all. Stories about computers or new technologies would probably bore me to tears, while he would be sitting there in fascination. You see, wha... Read More »

How to Make Sermon Illustrations Memorable

Most pastors and Bible teachers immediately recognize the power of a well-told illustration. It engages the heart of those listening and allows the mind’s eye to see truth through the application of something familiar. Ignoring the use of skillfully chosen i... Read More »

Illustrating the Text: Functions of a Text-Driven Sermon

It was June 1988, the city was San Antonio, Texas, and it was my first Southern Baptist Convention as a pastor. That year much in Baptist life hung in the balance, with many wondering about the direction of convention?  My former preaching professor at Southw... Read More »

The Use of Illustrations in Text-Driven Preaching

One of the first things that people who teach Sunday school or are in ministry   ask me when they find out I am a preaching professor is “Where can I find good illustrations?” This is the question of origination. But before giving good places to ... Read More »