5 Types of Sermons

“5 Types of Sermons”

By Greg Gibson

Type of Sermon Definition Two Examples Strengths and Weaknesses Preparation Time Preach How Often
1. Topical Quoting From Separate Verses
Sermon from quoting separate verses, where the authors’ intended points are NOT the sermon’s main points.
“You Were Created for Success”
1. Created Like God: Successful (Gen. 1:26-28)

2. Create Success by Dreaming the Invisible (Col. 1:16)

3. Create Success by Speaking Words (Heb. 11:3)
Pros: None.

Cons: Fills the church with unregenerate people. No explanation of the context, meaning, or application. Often story-telling, not Bible teaching. Beware of imbalanced over-emphasis by repeating favorite topics. You/Your-centered.

Copy & paste from Web. Requires little, serious Bible study.
NEVER!
“Mission Possible”
1. You Must Have a Vision/Mission to Succeed (Pr. 29:18)

2. No Mission Is Impossible With God (Lk. 1:37)

3. To Fulfill Your Mission, You Must Love Yourself (Mt. 22:39)
2. Topical, Expository From Separate Verses
Sermon from separate verses, where the authors’ intended points are the sermon’s main points.
“Created by God, and for God”
1. God Created Everything (Gen. 1:1)

2. He Created It for Himself (Col. 1:16)

3. The World Doesn’t Know Their Creator (Jn. 1:10)
Pros: Can address church’s special needs. Explains the context, meaning, & application. He/Him-centered.

Cons: Hardest for hearers to remember since points come from separate passages. Hearers can’t understand the big picture context of each verse. Beware of imbalanced over-emphasis by repeating favorite topics.

Harder to prepare and outline because the preacher must decide where to find the points.
Less often to address church’s special needs.
“Compassionate, Spirit-Led Missions”
1. Compassion: A Motive for Missions (Mt. 9:36)

2. The Spirit: The Power for Missions (Acts 1:8)

3. Go: The Command for Missions (Mt. 28:19)
3. Topical, Expository From One Passage
Sermon from one passage, where the author’s intended points are the sermon’s main points.
“God Created ALL Things” (Gen. 1:1 – 2:3)
1. God Created the Universe (1:1 – 19)

2. God Created the Animals (1:20 – 25)

3. God Created Man (1:26 -2:3)
Pros: Easier for hearers to remember since points come from one passage. Can address church’s special needs. Explains the context, meaning, & application. He/Him-centered.

Cons: Hearers can’t understand the big picture context of the whole book. Beware of imbalanced over-emphasis by repeating favorite topics.

Easier to prepare and outline because the points are all in the same passage.
Less often to address church’s special needs.
“Christ’s Great Co-Mission” (Mt. 28:18-20)
1. Christ Has All Authority (28:18)

2. Make Disciples (28:19)

3. Baptize Them (28:19)

4. Teach Them (28:20)

5. Christ Is With You Always (28:20)
4. Topical, Expository From Redemptive History
Sermon surveying passages from Gen. – Rev., where the authors’ intended points are the sermon’s main points.
“From Old Creation to New Creation”
1. Old Creation: Good (Gen. 1-2)

2. Old Creation Cursed (Gen. 3:14-15)

3. New Creation (Is. 65:17ff.; Mt. 19:28; Jn. 3:1ff.; Rom. 8:19ff.; 2 Cor. 5:17; Gal. 6:15; Tit. 3:5; 2Pet. 3; Rev. 21-22)
Pros: Hearers learn the most because of thorough Bible survey. Good for devotion. Explains the context, meaning, & application. He/Him-centered.

Cons: Hard to find practical application. Beware of imbalanced over-emphasis by repeating favorite topics.

Hardest to prepare and outline because it requires a mature knowledge of redemptive history.
Less often.
“God’s Mission From the Garden to the New Earth”
1. Mission Promised (Gen. 3:9,15b, 6:18ff, 12:1ff.)

2. Mission Succeeded (Jn. 17:4, 19:30; Heb. 9:12, 10:10,14)

3. Mission Proclaimed (Mt. 28:18ff.; Jn. 20:21; Acts 1:8)

4. Mission Completed (Gal. 6:15; 2 Pet. 3:3-13; Rev. 21:1-22:5)
5. Consecutive Expository From a Whole Book
Sermon(s) from consecutive passages through a whole book, where the author’s intended points are the sermon’s main points.
“Creation, Curse, & Promised Blessing”
Sermon series over several weeks (Gen. 1-50)

Pros: Easiest for hearers to remember since points come from whole books. Hearers can read ahead. Fearlessly preach “the whole counsel of God.” Best for preserving balanced emphasis. Explains the context, meaning, & application. He/Him-centered.

Cons: Book may not address church’s special needs.

Easiest to prepare and outline because the points are all in the same passage. And the preacher already understands the big picture context of the whole book.
Most often.
“Spirit-Powered Witnesses to a Lost World”
Sermon series over several weeks (Acts 1-28)

Another study on preaching at JesusSaidFollowMe.org:

“Big Picture Preaching”
3 Advantages of Expository Preaching From Long Passages Instead of Short Passages.
Is verse-by-verse preaching really best? Or, is theme-by-theme preaching better?
How to motivate hearers to obey and help them grow faster. Expository Preaching

Comments (1)

One Response to “5 Types of Sermons”

  1. Jim says:

    If it is God’s job to regenerate us how could any pastor be responsible for “filling the church with unregenerate people” because of type 1 sermons? Or is it the pastor’s job, or our own, to regenerate us?

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