In an information-rich context, seeking transformation through communication, not just transfer of information can be a challenge. Add to that the ancient text we want to share, and the question is: how can we take ancient words into the modern world and have them impact people’s hearts?
This unit gives students practical experience preparing and delivering sermons, but more than that, it gives them the opportunity to learn how to make the Bible come alive to people—first of all to themselves.
In this unit, students have four opportunities to preach and receive feedback from peers and as well as one-on-one with an experienced preacher. They also have the opportunity to ask questions and develop strategies for sermon preparation.
As students learn to be themselves before God and the people they’re speaking to, they grow in their trust of God, not just in their public speaking skills. This is a vital unit for anyone wanting to learn how to better communicate God’s word.
Section A: An Introduction to Preaching
1. Preaching as the ministry of the Word; preaching and teaching; preaching and liturgy.
2. The aims, forms and context of preaching; consideration of classical models.
3. Preaching and the preacher; the person of the preacher; the relationship between preaching and personal spirituality.
4. Biblical Theology and its impact on the practice of preaching.
Section B: Preaching in Practice
5. An introduction to basic principles in exposition.
6. The components of a sermon, including introductions and conclusions, outlining, illustrations, applications, transitions, climaxes.
7. Methods and techniques of public speaking; contemporary methods in preaching
Section C: Field Work
8. The preparation and delivery of portions of a sermon in class for critique e.g. introduction, illustrations. Where possible video recording is to be used to assist in the critique. This will be done early in the conduct of the unit.
9. The preparation and delivery of four sermons – two in a local church, one in the classroom and one as part of a Ridley chapel service. Full texts or notes are to be submitted to the congregational minister or college lecturer before each sermon is preached. Comments will also be obtained from three congregational members.
As this is largely a practical unit most of the assessment will consist of sermons delivered in the classroom, in a local church/placement, and in the College Chapel. As well as this there will be an exercise on the theological foundations for preaching, as well as an end of semester reflection exercise in which the student will seek to evaluate their preaching strengths and weaknesses and set some goals in preaching for the future.