Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Different Kinds of Sermons
I'm remembering that there are a few different kinds of sermons in terms of how they "feel" to put together and deliver.
There are the textual sermons, driven solely by the content of a particular Biblical text and then contemplated in the context of a particular dimension of congregational life.
There are topical sermons, a particular idea on the congregation's mind upon which the biblical witness is brought to bear. I don't do a lot of these, but some of the ones on marriage, friendship, and financial matters have been challenging to put together.
There are the medicinal sermons, words of hope and comfort spoken directly to a major event in the life of the congregation, where we acknowledge the excess of feelings in the room and allow God's Word to do its work in comforting and drawing us forward in the midst of that experience.
There are of course the rallying cry sermons that call for a specific action on the part of the congregation, preached sparingly but earnestly to move toward some desirable goal or change.
This week, I'm preparing a series of what I'd call stirring the pot sermons, broad-reaching treatments of biblical themes that help put individual texts and topics in their place. I'm approaching the inexhaustible, mysterious, prevailing, astonishing Kingdom of God. Pray that I make much of the Kingdom and Her King.