Preaching / Teaching

An Open Letter to Pastors on Preaching through the Whole Bible – Christian Article

This article is part of the Open Letters series. Dear fellow pastors, Perhaps you, too, have read with a sense of your own inadequacy Paul’s words to his younger ministry protégé in 1 Timothy 3. He tells Timothy that an overseer must be “above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own household well, with all…

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7 Tips for Planning a Sermon Series – Christian Article

Where to Begin? In most contemporary translations, the Bible runs to over one thousand pages of relatively small print—all of it God’s special revelation to his world and his people. Pastors of God’s people, therefore, face a somewhat daunting, if not overwhelming, task. How can they approach teaching the whole word of God to the people of God? We live in a world where we have more access to the word of God in Scripture than any generation before us;…

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An Open Letter to a Children’s Ministry Worker – Christian Article

This article is part of the Open Letters series. Dear Fellow Laborer, Children are a blessing from the Lord—sweet, reckless, and sometimes crazy blessings from the King. The Lord has given them to us to steward, love—and God-willing—raise into a future generation of those who will walk with God just as we walk with God. Whether you serve in the children’s ministry full-time, once a month, or on an as-needed basis, you are tasked with a role in helping to…

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How Charles Spurgeon Learned to Preach through a Broken Heart – Christian Article

How to Persevere Everyone faces adversity and must find ways to persevere through the oppressing moments of life. Everyone must get up and walk through the routines of making breakfast and washing clothes and going to work and paying bills and discipling children. We must, in general, keep life going when our hearts are breaking. But it’s different with pastors—not totally different, but different. The heart is the instrument of our vocation. Charles Spurgeon said, “Ours is more than mental…

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Are Pastors Free to Accumulate Wealth? – Christian Article

Freedom and Sacrifice Every pastor and church has a set of organizing assumptions that provide an implicit framework for how they relate to money. The problem is that few people acknowledge the narratives that drive those assumptions. I believe the two basic narratives of money—freedom and sacrifice—provide the subtext for the financial anxiety experienced in ministry. Certain people, owing to their wiring and upbringing, are drawn toward the freedom money can provide, while others will be inclined toward self-sacrifice. However,…

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An Open Letter to the Pastor Doubting His Calling – Christian Article

This article is part of the Open Letters series. Dear Brother, I can assure you that you’re not the first pastor to wrestle with the question of whether you’re really called to pastoral ministry. It’s an issue that haunted me throughout virtually the entire span of my first full-time pastorate. I spent countless hours in prayer and conversation with fellow pastors over the matter. Let me tell you a bit about those circumstances so we can ground the issue in…

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The Recipe for Good Pastoral Theology – Christian Article

An Underrated Theologian Spurgeon isn’t always thought of as a theologian. He’s thought of as a popular preacher. In reality, he was a theologian. He read books of theology avidly. He was reading six books of theology a week. He was studying the Scriptures in the original languages. You can see that in his sermons. He doesn’t show it off, but it comes out. You can see that he has been reading. He was an avid student of Scripture and…

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3 Crucial Qualities of All Good Sermons – Christian Article

Anatomy of the Soul John Calvin once said that the Psalms are an anatomy of all parts of the soul. What the Psalms do is present the idealistic, the realistic, and the optimistic view of the Christian life. In a sense, the whole Bible does that and it’s important that a preacher do that as well. If you only preach the idealistic part of the Christian life—the Romans 8 part where everything is well and you’re growing in the spirit,…

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How to Move Doctrine from Head to Heart – Christian Article

Tasting the Word of God Biblical preaching moves the hearer from head to heart and from the ethereal to the experiential by focusing on what the believer actually encounters when he really experiences ortastes this doctrine. As Jeremiah said, “I did eat the Word of God, it was sweet—sweeter than a honeycomb in my life.” Take the doctrine of the intercession of Christ—a very underrated doctrine in all kinds of Christian branches today. But it is an amazing doctrine. He…

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