Every week I listen or sit through 2 to 4 sermons a week. I hear two at church and then listen to a couple more via the internet. I like to listen to different people to learn how to be a better speaker. I love listening to Andy Stanley. He is the only speaker that I think is consistent in delivering a powerful message week after week. I listen to a wide variety of other guys on i-tunes: Rob Bell, John Piper, Tim Spivey, Kieth Davis, Matt Chandler, Don McLaughlin, Joel Olsteen ( I need encouragement), and others. Sometimes I just listen to a random person to see what I discover. I have been trying to break down what makes some guys good, others OK, and some just terrible.
Application. This is what separates the good from the bad. They all have different ways and styles of conveying the gospel but the one common thread is application. The best spend at least 30% of their lesson telling you how God’s word applies to your life. They help you see how God’s word looks when it is lived out in everyday life. They illustrate it and walk you through common situations that you will face this week.
Too many speakers give a 3 minute application at the end of the lesson and the average person has to go home and try to figure out what to do with the lesson. The best tell you what to do with the lesson. When you leave, you know how to apply God’s word to your life and when you will need to use this information.
The amazing this is the more I read Paul the more I see that this is what he did. He addressed a problem and then illustrated it to give the readers insight into what this looked like in their life. You can read Paul and know exactly what he wanted the readers to do and how it looked in their world.
So what do you think the best do?