Monday, December 24, 2007

32 Quotes on Effective Preaching


James O. Davis

  1. Personal power and charisma are not mysterious. Some believe that one cannot earn it or learn it. This is not true. The effectiveness of your communications determines the effectiveness of your life.
  2. Leaders whom people respect and follow are those who are able to communicate effectively. They have a dynamic presence.
  3. If you desire to make a difference, you will have to learn to communicate with a powerful presence. You must be able to communicate what you want to get done in the church, in the ministry, and in life.
  4. The pulpit is no greater than the evangelist or pastor who fills it on a weekly basis.
  5. If the preacher is boring to the congregation, the people will think God is boring.
  6. Some ministers have style without substance, while others have substance without style.
  7. Many souls are not saved because the sermon was never delivered to the lost.
  8. It is possible for the preacher to speak the message, use up a portion of time, give an altar call, and still not accomplish the intended purpose of the sermon.
  9. Many ministers of the Gospel spend most of their time thinking about what they are going to say to the audience, yet the average person is persuaded more by feelings than by facts. Mannerisms, gestures, head movements, facial expressions, platform movement, eye contact and clothing project the overall presence of the presenter.
  10. The verbal persuasion of the sermonizer will be greatly determined by the choice of words and phrases. Emotive words drive the theme of the message home. The communicator must be enthusiastic about the message.
  11. We must always remember we are not called merely to impress people but to influence their decision making for Christ.
  12. A sermon is not too long because the clock says so. It is too long if the audience says so.
  13. If you are wondering if the people are following you, walk to the outskirts of the platform and watch the heads of the people. If their heads turn as you walk, they are with you.
  14. Some suggestions regarding style are:
    • Never read from or memorize a manuscript.
    • Never speak in an angry tone.
    • Never point at people.
    • Never embarrass people.
    • Respect people and their time.
    • View yourself as a role model.
    • Say “thank you” for having the opportunity of speaking to them.
    • Start on time and finish on time.
  15. It is possible to study the spirit, substance and style of the evangelistic preaching of Jesus. Twenty percent of the New Testament is comprised of the actual words of Christ. The total recorded words of Jesus “would equal approximately ten 30-minute sermons” (Ralph Lewis, 13).
  16. The more the evangelist builds a commonality between the message and the listeners, the higher the level of communication between him and his audience.
  17. It is the responsibility of the evangelist to make sure the audience understands and applies the message to their lives.
  18. There must be a balance between beginning with the needs of the people and the precepts of Scripture. On the one hand, people determine the starting point of the sermon. On the other hand, the Scripture determines the subject and substance of the sermon.
  19. Evangelistic preaching requires the evangelist to speak in a language that can be understood.
  20. The evangelist or pastor must have a point of contact with the audience. If there is no contact during the sermon, there most likely will be no response to the invitation.
  21. The evangelistic preaching of Jesus scratched where people itched in everyday life. Technology may change, but the needs of people remain basically the same.
  22. Sermonizers must be cautioned not to make the basis of their sermons contemporary stories. Stories move people, but the Word of God changes people.
  23. You must connect at the emotional level, or you will not connect with your listeners at all. You may be able to get facts across intellectually but not be able to persuade your audience.
  24. Our brains are made to respond to emotion.
  25. There are nine skills for connecting with your audience:
    1. Eye Factor:
      • Eye communication
      • Posture and movement
      • Facial expressions and gestures
      • Dress and appearance
      Energy Factor:
      • Voice and vocal variety
      • Language and non-words
      • Listener involvement
      • Humor
      Example Factor:
      • Natural Self

  26. The four critical skills to developing a powerful presence are:
    • Good eye communication
    • Tall posture and varied movement
    • Animated gestures and facial expressions
    • Use the voice energetically but with pauses

  27. The stories of your life are among the best tools in your tool kit. The use of images and metaphors, whether created by language or by visual support, helps you keep the connection to people.
  28. Our audience has a chronic case of information overload. The average attention span of an adult is only eight seconds. For children, the attention span is only six seconds.
  29. The evangelist and the pastor must preach a Christ-centered Gospel.
  30. The evangelist and the pastor must preach in order to confirm the Gospel.
  31. The goal of Jesus was simple: To preach the Gospel effectively through the power of the Holy Spirit. Without the conscious anointing of the Holy Spirit upon the life and ministry of the minister, there will be no long-lasting fruit in the local church.
  32. The end result of a salvation sermon is not decisions for Christ but disciples for Christ. The end result of the soul-winning message is “changed lives.”