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difficult texts

confronting difficult texts and issues – mark keown

  Not for the first time, I recently had a conversation with a preacher in which that person spoke of their practice of avoiding difficult texts and questions in their preaching. So for example, this person avoids questions of sexuality, marriage, eternal destruction, and difficult controversial moral issues. I pushed back, but with little effect. […]

what we might be missing in our preaching – geoff new

(A version of this blog first appeared on Candour) Allow me several lead-ins to the one topic. I am still collecting my thoughts on the subject and so to help clarify my thoughts, I need to meander through some doorways. The first is from Jeremiah 4:16: This is what the Lord says: ‘Stand at the […]

the end of the world – simon mcleay

We just did a series on the End of the World.  I was afraid to touch this topic and there are some interesting ideas out there.  I was also aware that I will never have read enough to feel ready to preach on this, but we decided to give it a go.  Our Youth pastor […]

the challenges of preaching narrative – sarah harris

I became fascinated at the way narrative was constructed sitting in my fifth and sixth form English classes; I had teachers who were outstanding. I still remember the excitement of tracing the motifs of light and dark – day and night – in William Goldings, Lord of the Flies, for myself. I started to appreciate […]

what i learned from preaching on job – andrew lim

Expounding Job is admittedly intimidating. The book defies easy understanding. The author utilises a spectrum of literary genres, similes and metaphors. The book contains such philosophical and theological perplexities as human suffering and the apparent malevolent ways of a benevolent God. Further, interpreting the many speeches of Job’s friends demands that the preacher sniff out […]

the chronic fatigue syndrome of preaching in nz – andy shudall

There’s is a chronic fatigue syndrome in our churches and it is laying people low. Its symptoms are many and its impact is systemically evidenced. It is found behind our lecterns, pulpits and music stands. Preachers are tired – chronically tired – of preaching God’s Word. We download sermon outlines, pass off googled illustrations as […]

preaching to the heart – shelley west

I remember the classes A LONG time ago now at primary school. Friday morning just before morning tea was Bible in Schools time. Bible in School time meant extra stickers for me; I knew the answers, I knew the stories, I knew the memory verses, I knew all the right things to do and say […]

preaching when you know it’ll hurt – andy shudall

What to do when the text before you will wound the people who will sit and stand to listen to you? You know it will provoke pain in those of tender consciences. You are sure it will touch the raw nerves of the recently grieved and provoke the ire in the permafrost of resentment that […]

miriam bier – handle with care

I believe in biblical preaching. I believe, I think, in biblical preaching from the entire Bible. I believe that God can, and does, in some mysterious manner, Speak through Scripture and its faithful exposition. And yet, there is all sorts of muck in there that – perhaps appropriately? – seldom rates a mention in weekly […]

andrea mcdougall – preaching from the difficult texts.

How does the church help people to read the difficult parts of the Psalms? I come from a church tradition which regularly has 3 (or 4) Bible readings every Sunday in church – but many of the more difficult texts never come up for reading in church, and consequently are never preached on, as they’re […]