December 16, 2017

I Hear Pepper Talking

Personification. With me, it’s more than just a hobby. It’s a way of life. I’m reasonably sure that there are entire blogs being developed to prove that I am mentally ill, “dangerously unstable,” without sufficient assurance of faith to be truly converted and unfit for the ministry. The fact is, I do have one serious […]

The New Covenant Way: A soli deo teaching

The New Covenant Way: A teaching presented at soli deo August 1, 2006 by Michael Spencer One of the “values” of this fellowship is this: “Soli deo is teaching the Bible in a New Covenant-emphasized, Christ-centered, grace-exalting way.” I’m fairly certain that the part of that sentence that may raise the most questions is the […]

Sinning? Saved?

From time to time, I’ve referred to the common questions I get in my vocation as campus minister and Bible teacher here at OBI. Today I was asked another one that I realize is very common, and I’m sure many of you get this question in your ministry contexts. You have to understand that this […]

Jesus, Tongue Piercing and The Culture War

[I also dealt with this subject in a previous IM essay.] Col. 2:20 If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations – 21 “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch” 22 (referring to things […]

The Deconstruction Project: My emerging church talk

I am speaking at an emerging worship service this weekend. I’m pretty excited. I figured out the other day that in the last 15 years, I have spoken to the same audience (different people) over 2,000 times. So any opportunity to speak to a new audience is exciting for me. In preparing, I try to […]

What’s Wrong With The Sermon? V: “More stories please!”

The series to this point: Whatâ�?��?�s Wrong With The Sermon?: It’s Too Long. Whatâ�?��?�s Wrong With The Sermon? II: It’s Boring. Whatâ�?��?�s Wrong With The Sermon? III: “I don’t understand it.” Whatâ�?��?�s Wrong With The Sermon? IV: “It isn’t practical.” While an appreciation of stories is essential to understand and communicate the Bible, Biblical preaching […]

What’s Wrong With The Sermon? IV: “It isn’t practical.”

The Gospel leads us to practical discipleship, but it doesn’t create a religion of simplistic success principles. Good preaching leads to practical application without obscuring the Gospel itself. To gain some idea of the state of contemporary preaching, survey what is being preached at any ten successful megachurches in your state, or any ten churches […]

What’s Wrong With The Sermon? III: “I don’t understand it.”

The third in a series of posts examining the basics of good contemporary preaching. This post is not about people whose communication skills are too poor to get the job done. If you are ignorant, or mumble or can’t get a talk organized in any sort of comprehensible way, the road for you is clear […]

What’s Wrong With The Sermon? II: It’s Boring

In an entertainment addicted, spiritually depraved culture, the Christian message will never escape the charge of being boring, so preachers should tell God’s story clearly, creatively and persuasively, but without trading the Gospel for the applause of an audience. Today’s criticism:2. The sermon is boring. What did we do before the word boring was invented? […]

What’s Wrong With The Sermon?: It’s Too Long

A new Internet Monk series examining the basics of good preaching by listening to common criticisms. I’ve been preaching for…well…longer than a lot of you have been on earth. Thirty-four years ago next month I preached my first sermon, and I’ve been at it ever since. I currently preach sixteen times a month, and I […]