Text Message: The Centrality of Scripture in Preaching

By Ian Stackhouse and Oliver D. Crisp (editors)

Essays on preaching by scholars and pastors offering a vision of preaching as complex practice embedded in tradition and theological conviction.

ISBN: 9780718893514


Preaching has fallen on hard times with many questioning its relevance and even its validity as a New Testament practice. This symposium of specially commissioned essays draws together an international team of thirteen scholars and pastors to address the importance of textual preaching in the history and life of the early church, the historic church, and the contemporary church. Contributions include essays on Old Testament preaching; preaching in Eastern Orthodoxy; gender-sensitive preaching; preaching in the theology of Jonathan Edwards, Charles Spurgeon and Dietrich Bonhoeffer. It also includes essays on a range of homiletical challenges that textual preaching raises for the contemporary preacher, including genre, preaching without notes, inhabiting the text, and preaching without platitudes. A final reflection by Dave Hansen on the state of textual preaching rounds out the collection.

The preaching of the gospel stands at the heart of Christian praxis. These essays make a vital contribution to the recovery of the importance of preaching, focused on the text of Scripture. Written with an eye to the pastor and practitioner as well as those in the pews and in the classroom, this is a book that is appealing to a wide range of readers.

Additional information

Dimensions 229 × 153 mm
Pages 262

Trade Information LPOD

About the Author

Ian Stackhouse is Senior Minister of Guildford Baptist Church, UK, and the author of several books including The Gospel Driven Church: Retrieving Classical Ministries for Contemporary Revivalism (2005), which was his PhD thesis, The Day is Yours: Slow Spirituality in a Fast-Moving World (2008), and Primitive Piety: A Journey from Suburban Mediocrity to Passionate Christianity (2011). He also teaches in seminaries in the UK and overseas.

Oliver D. Crisp is Professor of Systematic Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, USA. Among his recent publications are Jonathan Edwards on God and Creation (2012), Revisioning Christology: Theology in The Reformed Tradition (2011), and Retrieving Doctrine: Essays in Reformed Theology (2011).


Foreword by Thomas Long
List of Contributors
     Ian Stackhouse

Part One: Biblical and Theological
1. Hebrews as a Model for expository Pastoral Preaching
     Philip Greenslade
2. Christ the Sermon: The Importance of the Text in Bonhoeffer’s Lectures on Preaching
     Ian Stackhouse
3. Prophetic Preaching from Old Testament Narrative Texts
     Steven D. Mathewson
4. Preaching The Darkest Psalm (Psalm 88)
     David M. Howard, Jnr
5. Gender Sensitive Preaching: Reading as a Woman
     Emma Ineson

Part Two: Historical
6. Jonathan Edwards on Preaching
     Oliver D. Crisp
7. The Bible for The Masses: The Popular Preaching of C. H. Spurgeon
     Peter Morden
8. Homiletics, and Biblical Fidelity: An Ecclesial Approach to Orthodox Preaching
     Andrew Walker

Part Three: Textual
9. Living with the Text
     Ian Stackhouse
10. Defamiliarization: Purging our Preaching of Platitudes
     Karen Case-Green
11. Preaching without Notes
     Robert May
12. Genre Sensitive Preaching
     David Ridder
13. From Text to Message: The Text Living in the Preacher
     John Woods

14. Every Sermon Fights a Battle
     David Hansen



Endorsements and Reviews

This is an invigorating and courageous set of essays. Ignoring easy and fashionable platitudes, the authors dare to ask what preaching might be if we believe that God has spoken in Scripture and speaks still in its exposition. The vision is enriched by historical study and sharpened by contemporary application. Every preacher will be encouraged and challenged in equal measure by this text, and will be better at his/her calling for reading it.
Stephen R. Holmes, Senior Lecturer in Theology, University of St Andrews

… this collection of essays is unique and valuable … [Text Message] will prove to be at least thought-provoking, if not also practice-altering. Its style is accessible and many of its suggestions are immediately practical. It is recommended, then, to all preachers who share this conviction. Scholars of preaching will also find much to respond to within it. Further, the volume as a whole, or selected essays within it, could be used in a course on expository preaching.
William J. Brennan III, in Reviews in Religion and Theology, Vol 25, Issue 1