In this chapter we will spend some time identifying the definitions concerning preaching terminology. The man that preaches needs to understand the various terminologies that are used in the field of preaching. I will never forget the first time that I heard the word “Homiletics”. I had no idea what the men were talking about, but I hoped that I did not have this disease.
The word originates for one that gives a mutual talk or a discourse. The best definition of homiletics is, “the art and science of preaching”.
The minister perfects his ability to prepare a message that truthfully engulfs the meaning of a particular scripture.
The minister takes his work and puts it the form of words that must sway the hearts of the hearer to make a decision; a decision concerning his message.
It has been said that preaching is “the communication of God by man to men”. Preaching is God's message delivered through a man to men. The man of God delivers the message of God.
The man that God chooses to preach is a selected man. In selecting his man; God allows him to become a separated man. The message of God must have a man that can deliver this message.
In selecting his messenger God will sift his message through this man. The message must be allowed the appropriate time to sift through the man and thoroughly saturate his being.
The man has about 30 minutes to deliver his designed message and to inflict an inner urge within the hearts of hears to make a decision for God. Upon delivering the message that has saturated his being, he must make the powerful appeal to the very soul of his audience. The preacher must never minimize the power of his proclaimed message.
The actual definition of the word pulpit is as follows, “a raised platform or high lectern from which a clergyman preaches in a church”. It should be with great honor and humiliation that a man approaches this sacred place. The gospel message has been preached behind this sacred piece of furniture throughout the ages.
The pulpit divides the man and his audience, not because of his merit; but because of his message. The pulpit recognizes the selection of this messenger to deliver God's word. The pulpit also reveals the separation of this messenger due to his approved calling. The pulpit is not for the lifting of the man but his approved heavenly message.
The pulpit is a sacred place that God's man delivers God's message to the hearts of his audience. The message will hopefully draw the attention and the affection of the audience. The pulpit is a serious place due to the man of God dealing with the eternal destiny of those listening to his message.
The foundation of a preacher's message will come from his selected passage of scripture. In selecting this scripture the preacher will preach from his “text”. In its conventional meaning, text means the “words of a book, or a book of such words”. The root of our American word text actually comes from the Latin words, “texere, textus, and textum”; which means “to weave or capable of being woven”. The word textile exemplifies this concept, the idea of weaving fabrics together.
In preaching a message the minister must be able to take his scripture and weave it together with his words into a presentation that is true to the passage.
The preacher will connect the points of his message in away that will be accurate, yet authentic for his desired purpose.
Once the preacher has his foundation and he has woven the pieces together, he will now tie the work together in a way that is presentable and preachable. In this we find the true skills that one must develop to prepare a true sermon.
The word sermon can be defined as, “a serious talk, especially one given in church based or discussing a passage of the bible'. In all actuality the word sermon can be interpreted as, “the finished product or the product of the process”. The sermon is the finished product that the man of God takes to the pulpit to deliver to his audience.
A sermon is not truly a sermon without having a biblical foundation. It may be a good speech or moving message, but without the scriptures it is no sermon.
The man thoroughly prepares himself and his message. A sermon will never reach its full potential with the appropriate time spent in preparation. In calling a man, God also called him to prepare.
The finished product of his passage and his preparation will be his presentation of a sermon. The finished product of the process that he has went through in conceiving a real sermon.
The Greek form of this word is, “to lead out”. It can be identified as, “a critical explanation or interpretation of a text”.
The preacher will dig into the text and lead out the actual meaning of his chosen passage. The minister will not “read into the text”; but he will accurately “read out of the text”.
In digging into the word and finding its significance he can then dish it out for the audience to feast upon. The purpose of this should be to identify the relevance of this passage in relation to his audience.
The preacher will conduct thorough investigation and examination of his text and give proper credence to its original, historical; and cultural meaning.
The process of exegesis must not be minimized in constructing the sermon. The house that is being built may end up being filled with holes that can damage and diminish the credibility of its builder.
The Greek word for “explain” means, “through, explain, and to interpret”. The full translation of the word is, “to interpret fully; to reveal or unfold the meaning of what is said, explained, or expounded”. It can be said that Biblical hermeneutics is, “the art and science of expounding and interpreting a passage of scriptures”.
The desired goal of biblical hermeneutics is to ascertain the voice of God within the passage. If the voice of God has been revealed and identified then a man has successfully expounded his passage.
If any mistakes have been made in expounding the scriptures it is due to the voice of man speaking as the voice of God. A man must be careful.
In dealing with the interpretation of words, we must identify:
A. the definition of words
B. the formation of words
C. the function of words
D. the relation of words
The literal meaning of exposition is, “the process of making clear, a setting forth of facts, detailed explanation”. Exposition can be defined as “the presentation of biblical truth that is the finished product of the prior process”. In delivering your message; you are declaring the product of your previous process, the process of digging for the truth and now you will dish out the truth.
The preacher has spent the appropriate time to dig out the true meaning of the passage. In becoming an effective preacher the man of God cannot minimize this process. In digging for the truth he will dissect the scripture and squeeze it until he has drained every drop of juice from the words.
The time has come for the preacher to stand up and boldly deliver the message that God has given him. In delivering this message the man of God must be willing to stand solid upon the truthfulness of his message. In delivering this message, the man of God is spreading the table for his listeners to feast upon.