Daniel Darling, author, pastor, speaker / Posts tagged "pastoring"

The Cadence of Good Preaching

Today for Leadership Journal, I interview my friend, Glenn Packiam, a pastor and songwriter in Colorado Springs. Glenn is a fellow Leadership Journal contributor and the lead pastor of new life DOWNTOWN, an extension of New Life Church. He is the author of several books, including LUCKY: How the Kingdom Comes to Unlikely People and Secondhand Jesus. His latest is Discover the Mystery of Faith.Glenn also recently released an accompanying worship album. I asked Glenn about the nexus of pastoring and songwriting: You're both a songwriter and a pastor. How does your creative side affect your preaching and leading? A good sermon is, in many ways, like a good song. It has to have a solid hook that sums up the theme, something that will stick in their hearts and heads long after it's over. It needs to have good verses that develop that theme and build up to it. There is a cadence to preaching that is also quite a bit...

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Friday Five: Calvin Miller

Calvin Miller is a best-selling author with nearly four million books in print. He is one of the most poetic and gifted writers in the evangelical world. He is also a long-time pastor. Miller speaks all over the world and is professor of preaching and pastoral ministry at Samford University’s Beeson Divinity School. His latest books include Letters to a Young Pastor and Letters to Heaven.  He was kind enough to answer questions for today's Friday Five: In your recent book, Letters to a Young Pastor you wrote a series of candid letters to young pastors. You really attacked the cult of celebrity that you feel pervades the  evangelical movement. Why do you feel this is such a big issue? I hope I didn't come across as “really attacking” anyone. But as a teacher of young ministers for more than twenty years now, I just donʼt feel the sensitivity in many successful, “large church” Pastors that I want to...

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Pastors, Love the Ones You’re With – The Gospel Coalition Blog

The Gospel Coalition graciously posted another of my articles. This one is about a new lesson I learned from a familiar passage: I've read 1 Peter 5:1 many times. As a young pastor, I'm paying more attention to its straightforward directives for my calling as a shepherd. But it wasn't until a few weeks ago that the simple, often overlooked phrase "among you" leaped off the page and into my mind. Why did Peter add this prepositional phrase? We know he wasn't meeting an editor's quota. And unlike so much of my writing, the inspired Word of God doesn't contain throwaway phrases. No filler here. So this means the phrase has significance. Peter could have easily said, "Shepherd the flock of God." But he didn't, because there is a lesson in that seemingly innocuous string of words. via Pastors, Love the Ones You’re With – The Gospel Coalition Blog....

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Are Pre-Packaged Sermon Series a Good Idea for Pastors?

Pastoring in this age is a great blessing, because of the volume and variety of resources at our disposal. I have hundreds of books and commentaries on my computer thanks to Wordsearch software. Then I have a library full of books and a number of key websites I visit. That’s not to mention the study Bibles I own. You can be a marginally intelligent guy like me and still craft a good sermon.

One of the resources that I find most helpful are downloadable sermons. Several ministries offer these, including Preaching Today from Christianity Today, Sermon Central, and Rick Warren’s Pastors.com. Personally I enjoy Preaching Today and then I use Ray Pritchard’s Keep Believing website to read his sermons and I frequent the archive of Ray Stedman, the late, great expository preacher. I also podcast several prominent pastors, first to feed my own soul and second to learn about the great texts of Scripture from great expositors.

Here’s the thing, though. I read and listen to these sermons as commentaries, to get ideas of how to structure and shape a sermon on a particular text and to get another man’s “take” on a particularly difficult passage. But I think it’s a miscarriage of my duty if I simply preached someone else’s sermon. I think most pastors would agree to this.

Which brings me to the idea of pre-packaged sermon kits. I’m seeing more and more of this from some more prominent pastors. Two examples that come to mind are Andy Stanley from Northpoint Church in Atlanta and Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill in Seattle. Both are terrific pastors whom God has blessed with great ministry.

What these guys (and other prominent pastors) are offering are complete reproducible and preachable  sermon series. They come complete with slick graphics, which include printable art work for posters, handouts, banners, etc. They are quite nice. But my question is this. Should a pastor of a local church, who has been called and ordained by God and chosen by the congregation to lead, should he preach the work of someone else on Sunday?

This is tricky question. On the one hand, all preachers’ work is the product of others. The old joke says that if you preach someone else’s sermon, it’s plagiarism. If you quote more than one preacher, it’s study. Our preaching is built upon the wise men who have gone before.

But that sermon should still be the product of our own study, right? I’m having a hard time imagining me doing a series at Gages Lake and saying, “Okay, we’re going to preach Andy Stanley’s “Guardrails” series this month.” The people might wonder, “Why are we paying him?” And isn’t it my job to study the Word and preach what God has specifically laid out for those particular people in that audience?