My approach to the preparation and delivery of sermons has changed very little since I started preaching in 1992 (when I was 16!). The end result, however, has steadily improved.
I follow Alistair Begg’s approach:
- Think yourself empty – I sit with the sermon text and explore it on my own attempting to both understand the author’s intent, but also how it connects with other passages to provide a larger, fuller picture of God.
- Read yourself full – I then engage in study of various commentaries, monographs, and other books about the text or issues related to the text.
- Write yourself clear – I always write out every word I intend to say. My hope is that through the discipline of prayerful writing, God will help me clearly and understandably communicate the message.
- Pray yourself hot – I then pray over the message up to the time I deliver it, surrendering it to God and asking that God allow me to somehow step aside from the performance of the sermon so that the congregation can meet Him in His word.
See Derek Prime & Alistair Begg, On Being a Pastor.
“Appearances Can Be Deceiving”
2 Corinthians 5:16-17; Colossians 1:15-20
“At Just the Right Time: ‘Born of a Woman’”
Galatians 4:4, Luke 1:68-75
“The Gospel in Ruth” Sermon 2: When God’s Will is Bitter
“The Gospel in Ruth” Sermon 1
“A Time to Love… A Time to Hate…”
Ecclesiastes 3:8; Romans 12:9-10
“A Time to Seek…”
Ecclesiastes 3:6b; Luke 19:1-10
“Hymns and Songs that Inspire: Amazing Grace”
1 Timothy 1:15-16