Willimon on Homiletical Communication

Preaching to the Unbaptized
In The Intrusive Word (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1994), Willimon exhorts preachers to be careful not to go too far in making the gospel understandable.  In his words, this is “reducing the gospel to a slogan for a bumper sticker” or mixing the gospel with some “common human experience” (24).

“We must learn to preach again in such a way as to demonstrate that, if there is no Holy Spirit, if Jesus has not been raised from the dead, then our preaching is doomed to fall upon deaf ears.  Our preaching ought to be so confrontive, so in violation of all that contemporary Americans think they know, that it requires no less than a miracle to be heard.  We preach best with reckless confidence in the power of the gospel to evoke the audience it deserves” (22).


shane lems

sunnyside wa 

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