You will not find this book listed on the majority of top preaching texts to read. In fact, most people probably have never heard of this book. It is definitely not a popular preacher text. The book operates on a neo-orthodox perspective. And the major objective of the text is to understand the difference between a narrative sermon and a Biblical narrative. Often a narrative story is rooted in a modern example, with a Biblical analogue attached, while Biblical narrative allows the text to dictate the direction of the contemporary story. Of course the style of sermon that is discussed moves away from the historical-situational approach that is common in most sermons, and uses a post-liberal approach to declaring the text. It is more of a literary style of understanding the text, because of the neo-orthodox understanding of theology that influences this expression. This approach critiques what most people are familiar with in narrative, a Fred Craddock style or a story style. This approach has no time for form criticism. Though it does lower the view of scripture to a transcendent reality. (Of course I do not agree with this shift) With this move, there is a deeper focus on reduction criticism, which is helpful in preaching certain texts. The book does move from high theology and methodology to concrete practice. There is a detailed chapter on moving from text to sermon. Often one in this style, needs to discover a contemporary language to properly preach the ancient text. Overall, this is a good book for those who enjoy the study of homiletic. I should add that one is not a false teacher because he understands various preaching methodologies, and has the ability to use that which can be helpful to Biblical sermons. So if you are looking for a non-mainstream preaching text, this one will challenge your thinking and and provide good insight to the modern narrative approach to sermons.
- Parallel Narrative Form
- Review of “Invitation to Biblical Preaching”
- Read “Preaching Biblical Wisdom in a Self-Help Society”
- Biblical Spirituality
- Review of “A Peculiar Prophet”