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Preaching Points: 55 Tips for Improving Your Pulpit Ministry

ISBN: 9781683592082
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The eleventh commandment for preachers is “Be clear!” This book offers 55 workable guidelines on how this exhortation can be heeded to help with communication and preaching skills.

This volume is a collection of some of the best of the hundreds of Preaching Points that the Haddon W. Robinson Center for Preaching at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary has produced. Preaching Points is a weekly podcast that features conversations on preaching by Haddon Robinson, Jeffrey Arthurs, Matthew Kim, and Patricia Batten—all members of the preaching faculty of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, South Hamilton campus.

This book offers diverse topics based upon on how they relate to preaching—the preacher’s spiritual life, the way to preach, the way to live life as preachers, their role as a preacher, considerations for listeners, and so forth.

Top Highlights

“The Big Idea is the dominant idea in your sermon. It’s made up by asking two questions: First, what is the author talking about? And second, what is the author saying about what he is talking about?” (Page 3)

“The Big Idea of good preaching is Preach the Big Idea.” (Page 3)

“Until we have figured out why the passage would be important to people today—not just tell them that but show them that (e.g., How would it work in their business? How would it work in their homes? How does it work in their thinking?) as we bring the biblical text and the modern world together—we haven’t done our job. So we are not preaching to people about the Bible. We are preaching to people about them from the Bible. And that means that there are two tensions: the tension of the biblical text (crucial, vital, and important) and the tension of the folks who are listening to us. Good preachers work hard to see to it that their sermons have that balance of biblical truth and contemporary relevance. That’s why being biblical and contemporary is the art of Christian communication.” (Page 10)

“the Lord?’ D. L. Moody was known to say, ‘He who kneels the most, stands the best.’” (Page 16)

“I’m talking about moral courage: to be able to speak truth with power, to be able to speak truth to people who don’t necessarily want to hear it.” (Page 11)


  • Introduction
  • Preach the Big Idea
  • Go to the Bible to Hear God Speak
  • Soak Yourself in the Text
  • Being Biblical and Contemporary Is the Art of Christian Communication
  • Speaking Truth to People Takes Moral Courage
  • We Need Scholarly Evangelists and Evangelistic Scholars
  • Sermon Preparation Is Twenty Hours of Prayer
  • Match the Mood of the Text
  • Give Your Listeners the Opportunity to Respond to the Message
  • Make Preaching a Priority
  • Guard Your Sermon Preparation Time
  • Preach the Principle
  • Drain the Liquid
  • Interrupt Your Preaching Plan
  • Don’t Just Get Feedback, Get Feedforward
  • A Wise Leader Works Exercise into His or Her Schedule
  • Lay Hold of the Bible Until the Bible Lays Hold of You
  • Use Your Introduction to Set Up the Body of the Message
  • The Essence of Good Preaching is Unity, Order, and Progress
  • Diversify Your Illustrations
  • Conclusions Should Come to a Burning Focus
  • It Doesn’t All Depend on You
  • Preach as a Dying Man to Dying Men
  • Be Yourself When You Preach
  • Mobilize Your Language and Send It Into Battle
  • The Better You Know Yourself, the Better You Can Serve God in the Situation in Which God Has Placed You
  • Feed My Lambs, Not Feed My Giraffes
  • Preach to the Outer Edges
  • In Our Preaching, Less Is More
  • Remember the ERP Factor
  • Preach “We” More Than “You”
  • Study Your Listeners
  • Paper Is a Poor Conductor of Heat
  • Effective Preachers Exegete the Bible and Their People
  • Observant Preachers Make Insightful Preachers
  • Adapt to Genderlects
  • Preach to One Person at a Time
  • People-Pleasing Puts the Pulpit in Peril
  • Preach to Those You Want to Come
  • Take a Survey of Who’s Listening
  • Gentleness Isn’t for Wimps
  • Preach about Money
  • We Need Reminders
  • Good Preachers Own Wastebaskets and Use Them
  • You Need Ten “‘Atta Boys” for Every One “You Jerk”
  • Go to the Balcony
  • Praise Your Listeners Before Correcting Them
  • Give Your Listeners Verse Numbers
  • Pastors are Soul-Watchers
  • Preachers Can Create a Culture
  • Strengthen Yourself in the Lord
  • The Disease of Modern Preaching Is Its Search After Popularity
  • Guest Preaching Doesn’t Have to Be a Guessing Game
  • Pastors are Preachers and Preachers are Pastors
  • A Crown Awaits Elders Who Lead Well

Product Details

  • Title: Preaching Points: 55 Tips for Improving Your Pulpit Ministry
  • Editor: Scott M. Gibson
  • Contributors: Haddon W. Robinson, Jeffrey D. Arthurs, Patricia M. Batten, and Matthew D. Kim
  • Publisher: Lexham Press
  • Publication Date: 2016
  • Pages: 136
  • Format: Logos Digital, Paperback
  • Trim Size: 5.25x7.75
  • ISBN: 9781683592082

Dr. Gibson joined Gordon-Conwell in 1992 and has brought with him both academic and experiential knowledge of preaching. An ordained Baptist minister, he has served as a pastor and interim pastor in four churches in Pennsylvania and New York since 1985: First Baptist Church, New Bethlehem, PA; Harmony Baptist Church, New Castle, PA; First Baptist Church, Clarion, PA; and First Baptist Church, Lockport, NY. At Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary Dr. Gibson directs the Center for Preaching and the A.J. Gordon Guild, the Ph.D. program in association with London School of Theology. Dr. Gibson is past president and co-founder of the Evangelical Homiletics Society and is a member of several professional and ecclesiological organizations. These include the Academy of Homiletics, the Evangelical Theological Society and the National Association of Evangelicals. Dr. Gibson has also been the recipient of several scholarships and fellowships. These included a scholarship from the International Order of the King’s Daughters and Sons for 1982 and 1983. From 1983-1984, he was also the recipient of the Parsonage Graduate Fellowship (a scholarship to study preaching overseas) and from 1988-1989 was a Rotary Foundation Scholar at the University of Toronto. He also received a private fellowship from September to December 1989, to study in Australia. Dr. Gibson’s scholarly interests include contemporary issues in preaching, pastoral ministry concerns, the history of preaching, the history of evangelicalism and discipleship. His personal interests include fishing, various sports, reading, writing, art, theater, films, antiques, books, and traveling. He and his wife, Rhonda, live in Beverly, MA. in The The


6 ratings

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  1. Benjamin Wang

    Benjamin Wang


  2. Richard



  3. Cathedral Of Faith Church Of God In Christ
  4. Phil Niebergall
  5. Saw Mu Draw Plow
  6. Henry Friesen

    Henry Friesen


    I have only heard Dr. Robinson a few times in my life but he is an excellent preacher and an amazing communicator. There was never a problem about understanding as to what Mr. Robinson was trying to convey. The Scriptures came alive when he preached!
  7. Crystal Arnold
    I give this information a 5. I am an ordained minister and have asked many brothers and sisters in the Lord "How to prepare" I thought it was like a 3 point thesis so it would flow beginning to end. Good help thank you so much.
  8. Yronrohi Senoc


Print list price: $14.99
Save $5.00 (33%)