Preaching

Rich toward God: preaching the rich fool (Luke 12:13-21), the power of money, and captivity in a culture of wealth

Author
Christopher H Edmonston
Abstract
In what ways does the parable of the rich fool (Luke 12: 13 - 21) challenge pastors of wealthy congregations as a text for preaching? This project offers qualitative analyses of sermons preached by five experienced preachers in wealthy congregations in North Carolina. Analyses will also be drawn from a review of conversations with the preachers about money, wealth, and justice. The results of this study are shared and compared with relevant critical, New Testament, and homiletical scholarship. We conclude that stewardship unleashed by parables like the rich fool is a word against the power of money in our culture of wealth.

Preaching and the mystical-indigenous imagination

Author
Vincent J Pastro
Abstract
Preaching in accompaniment of the poor is characterized theologically by a mystical-indigenous imagination rooted contextually in the indigenous poor. Jesus Christ the sacramental Word of the God of the poor is the Source of preaching. The author used traditional theological methodology with a preference toward Latin American theologians. He also interviewed several Mexican and Brazilian theologians. In the last chapter, the author included two homilies evaluated by parishioners and theologians. He concluded that the poor enjoy a special theological imagination that the preacher must necessarily respect while centering the preaching in the Source who is Jesus the sacramental Word.

Sermon application: a guide for biblical accuracy and contemporary relevance

Author
Daniel L Overdorf
Abstract
Sermon application explains or demonstrates how biblical teaching should impact the lives of contemporary listeners. Though the Holy Spirit plays the most critical role in application, the Bible calls preachers to cooperate with the Spirit by including effective application in their sermons. Effective application requires both biblical accuracy and contemporary relevance. Sermons often fall short of their potential effectiveness because their application lacks one or both of these elements. The Sermon Application Worksheet leads preachers to develop application that maintains biblical accuracy and speaks to contemporary audiences in a relevant manner.

A handbook of homiletics for the pastors of Myanmar

Author
George L Coon
Abstract
This thesis develops a handbook of homiletics designed to help the pastors of Myanmar preach more effectively in a rapidly changing culture. The task of this work is divided into four sections: (1) to research and develop sound biblical understanding of the subject and task of expository preaching; (2) to research the cultural and religious background of Myanmar along with materials available in the field of homiletics; (3) to write the handbook at a level that will be understandable to the average pastor in Myanmar; and (4) to field test this handbook with a group of pastors from Myanmar. The conclusion is a reflection on the field use of the handbook and offers practical solutions for the cross-cultural teacher, particularly the one who must use a translator.

An expository experiment on the virtue of courtship rather than traditional American dating

Author
John W Hardison
Abstract
This dissertation was birthed out of a need to find a solution to the breakup dilemma in the dating process which contributes to the ever rising rate in separation and divorced marriages. This project is designed, through an expository sermon, to reintroduce the listener to a premarital process (courtship) that in the past produced more solid and committed marriages in the history of America, but unfortunately has been long forgotten. In this study a pre-sermon survey was taken to cull the respondents' preconceived ideas about the subject of courtship followed by the preaching of a message on the subject of virtue of courtship rather than traditional American dating. Following the preaching of the sermon, a post-sermon survey was taken to see if the respondents' opinions had changed based on the information they received from the sermon. Did this sermon persuade the respondents to change their opinion and consider the premarital process of courtship as a more virtuous process than traditional dating? That is the answer this project seeks to find out. Following the preaching of the sermon, the respondents' answers showed a positive increase of influence in support of courtship over American dating.

Jesus and George Harrison's gift: preaching with the children of the Beatles

Author
Cathleen C Bascom
Abstract
Musician George Harrison's solo corpus reveals spiritual themes and rhetorical idioms that Christian preachers can relate to the teachings of Jesus for relevance to a certain twenty-first-century sub-culture in the United States. The homiletical process modeled by the author may be adapted for the study of other pop music texts and other sub-cultures as well.

Contextualization: a key to effective preaching among the Yoruba of Nigeria

Author
Sunday Olasoji Onadipe
Abstract
This project proposes that contextualization in preaching is indispensable to effective communication of the gospel among the Yoruba of Nigeria. The author combines practical suggestions for contextual preaching with perspectives from theological, missiological, biblical, and cultural studies. He claims that preaching is more effective when it is rooted in the context of the audience. The author illustrates this claim by analyzing four sermon samples, which embody some aspects of the religio-cultural ethos and communication forms of the Yoruba. The analysis demonstrates how contextualization could facilitate the proclamation and reception of the Christian message in diverse contexts.

Preaching that mobilizes a church community to reach an unchurched postmodern community for Christ

Author
K Bradley Smith
Abstract
Looking at the sweeping changes in American culture due to the influence of postmodern thought, this Thesis-Project seeks to help Christian preachers communicate biblical truth in a relevant manner. Rather than fearing these changes, the author welcomes the opportunities preachers have in this age of heightened spiritual sensitivity. The goal of this Project is to help preachers mobilize believers to reach unchurched people. In postmodern America, increasing numbers of people have little to no church background. Believers with a church background often struggle to relate to unchurched friends. The Project contends that the preacher's sermon content and style of delivery can help equip believers to reach unchurched, unsaved friends for Christ. The primary question addressed is: What kind of preaching most effectively mobilizes a church community to reach an unchurched postmodern community for Christ?

God is in the details

Author
Maria Ottensten
Abstract
In this thesis I explore the use of concrete details and metaphors for God's grace. In the sermons attached, preached during the fall of 2004 in a rural congregation on the west coast of Sweden, I have tried to use specific concrete details, as a means to convey God's love. During the process, much of the focus moved, from the question of using details in general, to the more specific question of how to convey grace. It became very clear to me, how easy it is to be specific and concrete in describing the law, or the problems in this world, and how difficult it is to be concrete as to grace and God's presence. Very often that part is expressed more in abstractions and principals, by way of which you risk to leave people with a vivid experience of the law, and a sense of despair, as God's intervention seems so weak. The conclusion of the thesis is that it is utterly important for the preaching, to move closer. Closer to the phenomena I describe, to the deep experiences of life, in general, and in my own life--when I do that as a preacher, it is possible to find words to convey God's grace in a concrete way.

A call for celebration in French West Indian preaching within the Seventh-day Adventist Church

Author
Sean C Dowding
Abstract
This project is an exploration of the relationship between celebration and preaching. Celebration in preaching depends on the preacher's capacity to fully personify the Word preached through content, method, experience, imagination and emotional liberation. The author formed a Parish Project Group that worked with him to prepare and evaluate his sermons. He surveyed members of his congregations and of other Seventh-day Adventist congregations. The thesis concluded that greater emotional and imaginative homiletical development results in more effective, powerful, and persuasive preaching. Also, that the one quality that determined successful holistic preaching is the preacher's natural fundamental capacity to be a preacher-celebrator.
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