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A New, Old Form of Proclamation


iStock_000000934342XSmallSure I enjoy a 3-point alliterative sermon almost as much as the next guy. What’s not to love in an extensive Greek word study message or the 16 ways to look at John 3:16 series? A month ago I posted an entry that was to be continued–“Seeking Context.” Here is some of that continuation.

Seemingly, there is universal belief in the power of story. This is evident in the use of stories for the purpose of amplification in virtually all forms and practices of preaching or teaching. However, telling the whole story is rarely done outside of the Jesus Film or other similar works. This is true even though some of the greatest preachers in history have utilized a contextual or comprehensive story message to great effect.

For example, “Beginning with Moses and all the prophets, [Jesus] explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.” What was the result? As they reflected back they shared, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” Peter uses a similar style in Acts 2 with a reasonably good effect. Stephen also used a comprehensive story message in Acts 7. While his personal end did not turn out very positive by some standards, he did get to see the glory of God just before leaving his life here on earth. The persecution and resulting diaspora that came on the day of this story-telling did serve to greatly advance the name of Christ and his church.

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  1. J. Bunch says:

    This really makes us think, whether it be the local church or an international venue, we must keep the person(s) hearing our words in mind. We must know the context in which they hear the words we speak.
    We can say intellectual things, package it brilliantly to the point that a seminary prof would cry, and yet still miss reaching the person(s) standing right in front of us.
    Story telling works in so many applications because it communicates real events to real people in their language.
    It is good that we should be knowledgeable and that if we are the one teaching it is good for us know know exactly what scripture is saying to the best of our ability. But touting that to the person listening to us does not always convey the message we would like.
    Good word!

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