Styles Of Preaching

Source: The Complete Library of Christian Worship, Robert E. Webber, General Editor

Throughout the history of the church, preachers have developed different styles of proclaiming the Word. These styles of preaching are often related to the hermeneutics of the preacher. Broadly speaking, the preacher approaches the task of speaking with one of three starting points. The first of these starting points is the Bible. The preacher approaches the text with the question, What does it say? Sermons that fall into this general category are evangelistic preaching, expository...

Evangelistic Preaching

Evangelistic preaching aims at producing a response. Specifically, by preaching of the gospel and emphasizing sinful condition of each person, the hearer recognizes the need for repentance and confession of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

Expository Preaching

Expository preaching is based on the grammatical, historical, theological method. Such sermons may be drawn from a verse or a passage, or they may develop a biblical topic or Christian doctrine.

Narrative Preaching

In recent years, the paradigm shift from a rationalistic worldview to a world in motion has shifted attention in biblical studies and preaching away from propositional statements to story. Narrative preaching draws on the Scripture as story and seeks to communicate through the form of story.

Prophetic Preaching

Prophetic preaching condemns particularities and affirms generalities. It points to those values and hopes that are consistent with the reign of God and calls people to live by those values.

Textual Preaching

Textual preaching is more than making a comment or two on a text. Textual preaching, in contrast to expository preaching, focuses on the thematic unity of a biblical passage, challenging the preacher to seek the text's central truth.

Catechetical Preaching

Catechetical preaching, or preaching sermons based on the consecutive "Lord's Days" of the Heidelberg Catechism, is a centuries-old tradition among Reformed churches and has historical roots in the Calvinistic reformation of sixteenth-century northern Europe.

Doctrinal Preaching

Doctrinal preaching teaches and builds up the body of faith through a deepened knowledge of God.

African-american Preaching

African-American preaching arises out of the cultural and religious experience of the oppressed. It reaches people in their dislocation and relocates them in God and in the promise of a brighter future.

Confessional Preaching

Confessional preaching arises out of the situation of the preacher. It builds on a personal experience, a matter of struggle, a triumph. It thereby connects with the lives of the hearers and draws them into the Word of God for their own situations.

Contextual Preaching

Contextual preaching declares the Word of God in the context of the social, political, moral, and economic life situations of the listeners. It hears and proclaims the Word for the immediate context of the congregation.

Life-situational Preaching

Life-situational preaching has as its starting point the personal concerns of its audience. It seeks to bring the hearer into the Word of God by making connections between Scripture and the hurts and issues of life.

Progressive-emotive Preaching

Progressive-emotive sermons are generally classified either by their relationship to source material (topical, textual, expository) or by the method of their argument (inductive, deductive, dialogic). The progressive-emotive sermon, however, is defined by its intended impact on the listener.