Created with Sketch.
Monday Morning Preacher
31 minutes | a day ago
Preaching Truth in the Public Square
What can preachers learn from prophets? In this episode, Matt Woodley explores that question with Danny Carroll, Professor of Biblical Studies and Pedagogy at Wheaton College. Carroll said “Prophetic preaching means speaking truth in the public square. But it also requires a certain kind of integrity, a knowledge of the world that we live in.” He also indicated that for prophets in the Old Testament, being prophetic often had implications for worship. He was born and raised in Houston, Texas. Carroll’s mother raised his family bi-lingual and bicultural, so they visited Guatemala every summer. Later on, he taught at a seminary in Guatemala City for thirteen years. To emulate the Old Testament prophets, pastors can emulate prophets’ behavior or preach their message. Carroll also recommends pastors begin preaching from the Old Testament. “We need the prophets as a moral compass and we lost it, and now we’re beginning to pay the social price for having silenced and ignored the prophets” he said. Check out what was referenced on the podcast:Daniel Carroll’s book The Book of Amos (New International Commentary on the Old Testament. WM.B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2020.
27 minutes | 15 days ago
How Your Life Shapes Your Preaching
How do live a life that cultivates great sermons? In this episode, Matt Woodley explores that question with Steve Norman, author of “The Preacher as Sermon: How Who You Are Shapes What They Hear.” He identifies ten roles that preachers inhabit, throughout the preaching process.Norman argues that the preacher plays a vital role in what he calls "the preaching moment." He said “For me, the preaching moment happens where four worlds converge: the paper (the text), the preacher (the voice through which that text is declared), the power of God (the author), and the people (who are the recipients).”His parents’ spiritual curiosity, as hearers of the Word really shaped him as a Christian. They came to church every week, expecting to hear from God. They also taught him to love scripture, and prayer. He has served in church ministry for 25 years, in metro Detroit and in Western Michigan.BUY THE BOOK: “The Preacher as Sermon,” website, created by Preachingtoday.com, Christianity Today, updated 2021 “The Preacher as Sermon” book, Preaching Today Books, created by Preachingtoday.com, Christianity Today, updated 2020
12 minutes | a month ago
Why Three Point Sermons Are Effective
What are the merits of a three point sermon? In this episode, Matt Woodley and Kevin Miller explore that question. Matt argues for the three point sermon, while Kevin believes the one point sermon is more expedient, to deliver the gospel message to a congregation.Matt said “It’s underrated. Don’t cast it out. I think it still works. Keep it in your repertoire.”When he references three points, in a sermon – he’s showing listeners the movement of passage in the Biblical text.It’s a simple way to organize your information – you’re breaking it up into bite sized chunks: it gave give your listeners three scenes about the text; it can have movement. For example, in journalistic writing, they talking about writing in scenes, a discreet movement of action, something that you can see.He also talks about a sermon he gave on Hebrews 10 that focused on “Christ and His atoning sacrifice.” His three points were: The need for forgiveness The price of forgiveness The offer of forgiveness Matt said “It’s not a disaster if they only remember one of the points, and they don’t remember the outline. The outline isn’t really the point. Transformational truth from the text — That’s really important. ”
27 minutes | 2 months ago
How to Preach with a Biblical Imagination
How can you preach with a Biblical imagination? Alison Gerber, pastor at Second Congregational Church in Massachusetts explores that question with our co-host, Kevin Miller. She uses the imagination, to help the Biblical narrative come alive for her listeners. Gerber said “If we do have this purpose to see lives change. Some imagination is going to be required.” Her first phase in sermon prep is nailing down the big idea. Gerber still employs Haddon Robinson’s method of preaching: “exegeting the text, reading the text, word studies, and coming down to the core central idea.” After that, she starts writing and developing the sermon. If it’s a narrative sermon, she asks herself the question “how am I going to tell this story, or enter into it?”“Really my goal with all of this is to bring the senses into the sermon,” said Gerber. Putting your congregation into that space, of the Biblical text. Describing tactile elements help paint a picture, so that listeners can listen and see what’s happening in Biblical story – that may feel foreign to them, otherwise. Learn more about Alison on her website. Check out what was referenced on the podcast: Edwin M. Yamauchi, and Marvin R. Wilson's book A Dictionary of Daily Life in Biblical and Post-Biblical Antiquity, Hendrickson Publishers. 2014
31 minutes | 2 months ago
Say it Again! Preaching the Good News of Easter
How can you preach the good news of Easter? Bishop Timothy Clarke, Senior Pastor at First Church of God in Ohio says you don’t have to make the Easter message relevant for people. It’s already relevant, because it’s in the Word of God. He drew attention to Isaiah 40:8 (ESV) “The grass withers, the flower fades and the word of the Lord stands forever.” In this episode, they discuss everything from Chicago steakhouses, to preaching failures, to how the resurrection narrative stands the test of time. Bishop Clarke offers three specific words of advice for preachers: Focus on your relationship with God. Make your family a priority. Find your voice, vocation and vision. Check out what was referenced on the podcast: H. Beecher Hicks, Jr.’s book Preaching Through a Storm: Confirming the Power of Preaching in the Tempest of Church Conflict You can also watch Bishop Clarke’s sermons on YouTube.
24 minutes | 2 months ago
Keeping Grace Fresh in Your Preaching
How can you preach the grace of the gospel in a fresh way? In this episode, Kevin Miller and Ethan Magness, pastor at Grace Anglican Church in Grove City, Pennsylvania explore explore how preaching on the grace of Jesus Christ, can speak to the everyday concerns of your people.He said “Our bond with God has experienced a tragic severing. What we need more than anything is reconciliation with the highest point of reality. We need to be totally made new before God, reconnected, re-established, and loved into loveliness.” Magness also stressed the importance of cultivating an expectation, and is more than just a moral harangue, or a new plan to improve yourself for God. He said “But instead the heart of the Christian enterprise of preaching is to proclaim someone else besides me, and someone else besides you.”He teaches seminarians how to do three things, in a sermon:1. Exhume the Biblical material of a given passage clearly.2. Show how that Biblical material points to the gospel (the redemption from sin via Christ’s death and resurrection. 3. They have to existentially connect with the “rocky horror picture show” of the hearer’s life.You can listen to Ethan Magness' sermons on Grace Anglican Church’s website.
19 minutes | 3 months ago
Striking the Right Tone in Your Preaching
How can pastors improve the tone of their preaching? In this episode, Matt Woodley and Dr. Hershael York, Senior Pastor at Buck Run Baptist Church set the record straight. He also serves as the Dean of Southern Seminary’s School of Theology. Tone can be communicated through your pace, pitch, volume, and even body language. Sometimes a person’s tone doesn’t match the content, of what they’d like to convey. And that’s often what can be harmful, in a conversation with a spouse, a friend – or in a sermon. Dr. York said “I always need to grow in delivery, passion and getting rid of verbal bridges. Those things are incredibly challenging for me, even after all of these years. I have much room to grow.” He warns pastors of preaching the emotion you feel, instead of the emotion of the Biblical text. “Your tone has to match the content of the text,” said Dr. York. Learn more about him on Southern Seminary's website: https://www.sbts.edu/dr-hershael-york-dean-of-the-school-of-theology/
23 minutes | 3 months ago
Fear, Politics and Preaching: How to Move Forward
How can preachers respond to a tense political climate? In this episode, Kevin Miller and Matt Woodley seek to find a way forward, after a divisive presidential election. More specifically, they delve into how pastors can disciple people in Christian citizenship and political engagement after the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021. Stewart Ruch, an Anglican bishop said “We, as those who treasure sacred symbols, decry the combination of holy and unholy symbols that were employed in ways that undermine the dignity of any human being.” Miller offers four steps pastors can take, to speak into politics – while maintaining a wise, Christian position: • Honor the many evangelical leaders who have spoken up. • Teach more specifically on “how to think about” politics. • Speak into the fears that created the feelings of “do-or-die urgency.” • Stop reading current political leaders into the Bible. Check out what was referenced on the podcast: Justin Gibony’s book "Compassion (&) Conviction: The AND Campaign's Guide to Faithful Civic Engagement" https://www.ivpress.com/compassion-conviction
24 minutes | 4 months ago
The Power of the Potent Phrase in Preaching
Martin Luther said that “the ears are the organ of conversion.” How do you craft the right combination of words, so that it sticks in the minds and hearts of your listeners? The Rev. Canon David Roseberry, an Anglican pastor and executive director of the non-profit, LeaderWorks explores how to make sermons powerful with potent phrases, alongside Kevin Miller. Roseberry said “The turn of phrase – the idea of being able to sum up what you’re trying to say in a memorable phrase is really a skill that’s acquired and honed over time.” When he started preaching 30 years ago, he used manuscripts. Now Roseberry carefully crafts summary statements, a punchline that listeners can go home with. Sometimes they manifest themselves as puns, that reinforce a big idea from a particular passage of scripture. If you were summing up Jonah chapter three, you could say “you can run, but you cannot hide.” Learn more about his ministry at leaderworks.org: https://www.leaderworks.org/about
24 minutes | 4 months ago
The Life and Preaching of Charles H. Spurgeon
Charles H. Spurgeon, a Baptist minister from England (1834-1892) has a unique legacy as a preacher. His sermons “often contain subtle and bold references to Christ on the cross,” according to Thomas Breimaijer, author of Tethered to the Cross: The Life and Preaching of Charles H. Spurgeon. In this episode, Matt Woodley and Breimaier explore Spurgeon’s life and ministry. “His upbringing was very much steeped in this rural identity, which is interesting given that he’s known for his preaching in London at the Metropolitan Tabernacle which was the largest protestant church in the world,” Breimaijer said. He wrote his thesis “The Cross in the Tabernacle: Charles Haddon Spurgeon & Biblical Hermeneutics” while earning his PhD at the University of Edinburgh, which laid the groundwork for his new book, Tethered to the Cross. He argues that Spurgeon viewed the entire Bible through the lens of the cross of Christ. “He preached to thousands of people each week, and through his influence he started a college for pastors,” according to Breimaijer who is a Tutor of Systematic Theology and History at Spurgeon’s College in London, England. You can buy the book here: https://www.ivpress.com/tethered-to-the-cross
18 minutes | 5 months ago
Preaching the Genres of Scripture
How do you preach on the genres of scripture? Matt Woodley and Ken J. Langley, Senior Pastor at Christ Community Church in Zion, Illinois explore this topic. He is also an Adjust Professor of Homiletics at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. They also discuss a few COVID-19 preaching challenges, like preaching to a camera in an empty room. Ken said “There are different types of literature. Some start once upon a time. Some start the White House issued a statement today. Some start with ‘thus says the Lord.’ He indicated that genre sensitivity in preaching would mean attentiveness to how different types (or forms of scripture) work.” When preaching on the Psalms, it’s important to honor the form, and the emotion of the text. Ken draws attention to “the poet’s agonized scream,” from a commentary on the Psalms. This shows how emotion should be prioritized over form, when exegeting some Biblical passages from the Psalms.
26 minutes | 5 months ago
Does Your Sermon Equip People For Their Vocation?
Are you preaching in a way that speaks to people, in their vocations? In this episode Matt Woodley talks to Steven Garber, author and Senior Fellow for Vocation and the Common Good for the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust. He’s also the author of "Visions of Vocation: Common Grace for the Common Good." Matt and Steven explore how pastors can equip people, with their preaching for their everyday lives, and vocations as teachers, garbage men, doctors, and corporate executives. Steven shares the story of a retired, Wall Street CEO who felt slighted by the church “You know – I’ve been a faithful member of the church for a long time, and I’ve tried to be there regularly whenever I could be there to be part of the church’s life. I contributed to the church’s life in many ways, as I’ve been able to. I’ve never in my life heard a sermon where the preacher thought about somebody like me when he prepared his sermon.” Check out what was referenced on the podcast: • Steven Garber's book Visions of Vocation: Common Grace for the Common Good. IVP, 2014. https://www.ivpress.com/visions-of-vocation • Neil Postman’s book Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in The Age of Show Business. Penguin Books, 2006. https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/297276/amusing-ourselves-to-death-by-neil-postman/ • Nicholas Karr’s book the Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains. W.W Norton & Company, 2010. https://wwnorton.com/books/The-Shallows/
16 minutes | 5 months ago
Sermon Openings for a Weary World
In this episode, co-hosts Matt Woodley and Kevin Miller explore the intricacies of sermon openings and why they’re so critical to getting your point across. Kevin said “The opening really matters, because we have to have people’s attention.” He cites an introduction from a sermon entitled “Yet I Will Praise Thee” from Jill Briscoe, international author and speaker. She posed the question “Have you ever asked God questions and felt you haven't received a good answer?” Jill's sermon opening is relatable, and as a result gets your attention. This episode will help you craft introductions that explain what your sermon is about, and why your listeners should care.
13 minutes | 6 months ago
Spiritual Health For Pastors: Know Thyself, and Be Known
How can you maintain spiritual health as a pastor? Matt Woodley and Kevin Miller talk about difficult seasons in their life and ministry. Over the years, Matt learned the importance of examining his own spiritual health. Here are the questions he uses for his spiritual audit: 1) Am I receiving God’s word with meekness? 2) Do some people really know me? 3) Is my prayer life growing? 4) Is there a growing affection for Jesus in my heart? Matt and Kevin also explore the importance of prayer, confession, friendship and taking time to slow down in pastoral ministry. Matt cited Rick Warren’s advice “if we would confess our temptations, we wouldn’t have to confess as many sins.”
22 minutes | 6 months ago
Preparing People for Christmas with Advent Preaching
How can pastors prepare people for Christmas? Matt Woodley talks to Matt Erickson, Senior Pastor at Eastbrook Church about how to approach this in Advent. This year, he’s doing a four week series on the genealogy of Jesus, from Matthew chapter one. The series will focus on some of the key men, and women that are part of Jesus story including Mary and Joseph. Last year, he did an Advent series entitled “Songs of the Savior: Psalms for Advent,” based on Messianic Psalms. He said “It was a powerful journey with church to engage with the Psalms.” They also explore preaching challenges in 2020: the global COVID-19 pandemic, racial tensions in the U.S., and a presidential election with high stakes.
24 minutes | 7 months ago
5 Principles For Preaching on Politics
Should pastors preach on the divisive subject of politics? Matt Woodley explores this topic with co-host, Kevin Miller. If you decide to preach on politics, keep the five principles in mind that are outlined in this episode. Remember that people at your church may identify with opposing political parties. So the important thing is to be faithful to the gospel, and the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Matt said “Christians should engage politics, because doing so provides us with a robust opportunity, to love our neighbor by acting justly, promoting human flourishing and seeking the prosperity of our community” an excerpt from the book “Compassion and Conviction.”
17 minutes | 7 months ago
The Power of Emotion in Expository Preaching
What role should your emotions play in expository preaching? Matt Woodley explores this topic with Greg Hollifield, Associate Dean for Assessment and Reporting at Memphis College of Urban and Theological Studies at Union University. He said “So I started listening more closely to Haddon (Robinson’s) sermons, and I realized the emotions he was evoking were in line with the content of the text that he was expositing.” He also warns preachers of being emotionally or intellectually manipulative, when preaching God’s word. Greg talks about a recent sermon he preached where Jacob wrestles with an angel, to pursue a blessing. Find out how he frames this story, to capture the emotion of the text. Check out what was referenced on the podcast: -Kenneth Quick’s article "Your Text Has Feelings" found in “Staying True to the Text,” a preaching guide from Preaching Today. https://www.preachingtoday.com/preaching-guides/staying-true-to-text/your-text-has-feelings.html -John Walsh’s book "The Art of Storytelling." Moody Publishers, 2014. https://www.moodypublishers.com/the-art-of-storytelling/
25 minutes | 8 months ago
Is The Big Idea More Helpful or Hurtful? It's Complicated.
Is the big idea more helpful or hurtful to listeners? Matt Woodley explores this question with Abe Kuruvilla, Senior Research Professor of Preaching and Pastoral Ministries at Dallas Theological Seminary. Abe said "The big idea is ultimately a creation of the preacher. It's not in the text. It's something the preacher creates." He argues that the text isn't a plain glass window to look through; but a stained glass window to look at. Check out what was referenced on the podcast: -Abraham Kuruvilla's article "Time to Kill the Big Idea? A Fresh Look at Preaching" found in Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, 2018. https://homiletix.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/KURUVILLA-Big-Idea-JETS2.pdf -Abraham Kuruvilla's book "Privilege the Text!: A Theological Hermeneutic for Preaching." Moody Publishers, 2013. https://www.moodypublishers.com/privilege-the-text/
29 minutes | 8 months ago
Preaching to People on the Margins
How can you preach to people on the margins? What does this look like on a practical level? Matt Woodley explores these questions with Patricia Batten, Associate Director of the Haddon W. Robinson Center for Preaching at Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. She drew attention to how a preacher can overlook certain people groups, without realizing it. Pat said she often preaches to the middle, but recently felt convicted that she should expand her audience. She also shares a story about her daughter, which demonstrates her conviction that all people are made in the image of God. Check out what was referenced in this episode: Patricia Batten's book "Parenting by Faith: What Jesus Said to Parents." Rose Publishing LLC, 2019. https://www.amazon.com/Parenting-Faith-What-Jesus-Parents/dp/1628627816/
20 minutes | 9 months ago
Called To Faithful, Not Successful Preaching
What does it mean to achieve success as a preacher? What makes a successful sermon? Matt Woodley explores these questions with Wes Oden, who has served as Senior Pastor at Houghton Wesleyan Church in New York for 24 years. When he first accepted the role, he was nervous to serve an intellectual congregation. But his wife reminded him that they were called to love people. Wes said "one of the things that scares me the most is becoming stagnant." Check out what was referenced on the podcast: For sermons from Wes, visit his church's website: https://hwchurch.org/audio-podcast-archive-links/ Get Matt Woodley's book "The Folly of Prayer," on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Folly-Prayer-Practicing-Presence-Absence/dp/0830837124/
Terms of Service
Do Not Sell My Personal Information
© Stitcher 2021