We continue a series of posts called Preaching Proverbs for Planters. I’ve tapped several church planters to give one piece of advice to those of us who are, or will be, preaching in church planting contexts.
See the previous proverb from Gordon Duncan.
Bobby Griffith, Jr. is co-Pastor/Church Planter of City Presbyterian Church, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma and a Ph.D candidate dissertating something about History at the University of Oklahoma.
Study is crucial for sermon preparation. It is often tempting to spend time with our old friends – to converse with those who make us comfortable. Maybe Calvin, Murray, or Keller. But, perhaps, we should take our cue from the Renaissance and broaden that dialogue.
If we strive to skillfully communicate Truth, we should seek truths in many places. Read the Church Fathers. Imagine with Fitzgerald and Joyce. Don’t be ashamed to mine Entertainment Weekly, The Atlantic or People. Do not fear Foucault, Derrida or Darwin. Read good history, fiction, and philosophy outside your ideological and theological tribes. If Saint Paul quoted Aratus to connect with his audience, we can look to our equivalents.
And, good heavens, please spend time with real people – talk to them and, perhaps, ask questions that pertain to your text.
If we widen our dialogue, we will better see how the Scriptures speak to the issues of our day and the longings all humans share.
What do you think? Do you ever consider publications not found in the seminary bookstore to be sermon study resources? Have you considered that these may be sources for truths rather than merely fodder for “exegeting the culture”? Leave a comment or question for Bobby below.
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