Preacher: Be Clear and Concise!

What makes for a good sermon? Sound exegesis? An understanding of passage’s place in redemptive history? Quality application? These are necessary, of course. But you can have these things and still be a terrible preacher because your communication is incoherent and your organization sloppy. The art of communicating the sermon—homiletics—is just as vital as focusing on exegesis and theology. As I…

A Reading List for 2014

One of the great joys of being a pastor is that taking time to read books is part of the job. You cannot effectively teach, shepherd, rebuke, exhort, and develop yourself in mind and heart without reading good books. The great British preacher Charles Spurgeon said, “Give yourself unto reading. The man who never reads will…

Reading Ruth: Four Themes to Keep in Mind

Ruth is a literary masterpiece. Death. Suspense. Love. Brokenness. Redemption. Often we think it is mainly about a romantic encounter between a strong man-hunk and an unworthy pauper girl. That’s in there, of course, and it certainly adds to the drama. The author knew what he was doing–it draws us in! Ruth is, however, mainly…

Review: Preaching: A Biblical Theology

Jason Meyer. Preaching: A Biblical Theology. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2013. $16.73 (Amazon). 368 pp. Some of the best books on preaching contribute to the larger conversation with one or two insights that no other book seems to make. That’s why most preachers have several books on preaching on their shelves. Those who are familiar with evangelical…

What Are the Psalms Designed to Do?

I answer that question in a portion of my sermon last Sunday on Psalm 47 titled, “God Is King of All the Earth.” Let me start by saying the psalms are not primarily meant to teach us theology. They do that, of course. The theology of the psalms is deep, it’s robust. Theology literally means…

Review: Wesley on the Christian Life

Fred Sanders. Wesley on the Christian Life: The Heart Renewed in Love. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2013. $14.79 (Amazon). 262 pp. When I was first introduced to Reformed theology, I quickly labeled John Wesley as a no-zone for developing my beliefs. This was due mostly to the waywardness of many Wesleyan and Methodist churches today. Associating Wesley…