Monday, July 12, 2010

FOR TEACHERS AND PREACHERS

They effectively taught us at the Preston Road School of Preaching to use illustrations in our sermons; that these are the windows for the church to see into the truths we would present.  Great point.

Watch Jesus.  Everywhere he taught he pointed to something for a lasting impression; withered tree, lilies of the field, etc.

When we begin to communicate as a novice we tend to find our illustrations and then fit the Word around them.  When we are out of illustrations we believe we are out of messages.  Not true.

Our approach is backward.  Find the truth and illustrate it from Jesus' walk, your walk, or another's walk.  The Bible will even illustrate itself; i.e. Eph. 1:18 on opening the eyes of your heart is supported by II Kings 6:15 in the story of Elisha praying for the eyes of the servant to be opened....and they were.

The use of illustrations---of which Jesus was master---curbs our pattern of projecting rote facts.  Illustrations breathe life into the message....just as Jesus did his.  Critics of this approach ridicule us as messengers who just tell stories.  Not true.  Done right we are messengers who communicate lasting inspiration.

Be confident in the Word.  Then be confident your walk supplies adequate windows for the hearers to connect.

2 comments:

Lee said...

Terry this is such an excellent point. Over the years of teaching I have discovered that when correctly done, I am attempting to illustrate a Biblical truth. When done backwards, as you say, I realized that I was trying to prove/illustrate my point through Scripture. When this was finally discovered in my preparation time, it changed my entire perspective of God's Word. Thank you for sharing this sometimes "hard learned" truth.

Christi said...

I know that I always appreciate your illustrations, as those in the Bible are sometimes more pertinent to the people that lived during those times. You have a skill at touching our hearts through your illustrations so please keep it up!