The sermons below include critiques, praise, suggestions and the authors own preaching.

Preaching: Emotional Manipulation

Of course an eager evangelist might argue that getting a person down the aisle to make a public profession is always in the “best interest” of the professing person, but the millions of inactive religious converts suggest that some of those lured down the aisle hated themselves and the evangelists the next morning. Seduction was the way of the serpent, not the way of Christ. The use of conversion statistics for personal promotion implies a scalp-gathering mentality that is for the advantage of the persuader. In a sermon contrasting the orthodox and liberals, the preacher climaxed his harangue with the …keep reading »


Preaching: Loaded Language and Name Calling

Loaded language and name calling have become a fine art in American religious rhetoric where they should have no place at all. “Redneck,” “fundamentalist,” “secular humanist,” and “liberal” are almost as common as favorite biblical terms. Religious periodicals advertise conferences on “real” evangelism and for “real” women, implying of course that some are unreal. Name calling is intensified when a strong contrast is made. An example of such contrast occurred in the context of a debate within a Southern Baptist association meeting. Referring to the preceding speaker, a pastor declared that he was not surprised at the speaker’s position because …keep reading »


My Sermons on Philippians

The 2nd VP of the Southern Baptist Convention, Jared Moore, asked me to preach at the church he pastors, New Salem Baptist Church in Hustonville, KY, at the end of this past June. I don’t get the opportunity to preach often so I was grateful for the opportunity. (And I hope these sermons don’t give me even less opportunities to preach!) I accepted Jared’s invitation even though time was short. The Lord helped me put these sermons together in about two weeks. The folks at New Salem were wonderful hosts to my wife and I. I pray these sermons are …keep reading »


Need Help Pronouncing Bible Words?

Have you ever come across words in the Bible that you can not pronounce? Maybe you were working on a lesson, a sermon, or just reading the Bible and a word throws you off. If you’re like me, you’ve got to find out how to pronounce the word or it will sit in the back of your mind the whole time. This is especially so if I’m teaching or preaching the material. Well, this just happen to me while sitting going over my four sermons so I can preach them this weekend in Hustonville, KY. The fact that I’m actually …keep reading »

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Preaching Effectual Sermons by Andy Hynes

Guest blogger Andy Hynes (@ABHYNES) is a PhD candidate at Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary. The Puritans understood the power of the sermon.  Effectual sermons opened the door to the Father’s work.  John Flavel supposed that hearing God’s Word regularly was necessary for Him to draw a man toward Himself.  The Father consistently drew the elect to Himself through the Son.  General revelation was insufficient to allow this to happen. When Paul wrote Ephesians 4:20-21 Flavel understood, Of necessity of divine teaching, in order to believing, the apostle speaks, in Eph. iv. 20,21. “But ye have not so learned Christ; ‘if …keep reading »

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Charles Spurgeon on God’s Judgment and Tragedies

In the wake of the recent tragedies from the tornado in Oklahoma, I thought sharing a 150 year old sermon from the Prince of Preachers might be appropriate. The sermon below was delivered by Charles Spurgeon on Sunday, September 8, 1861 in light of two disasters that hit close to home for him. In weeks prior to the sermon, two different train collisions happened weeks apart. The train wrecks took more than 38 lives and left hundreds injured. Some Christians replied that the lives taken in those wrecks were part of God’s judgment. In response, Spurgeon preached to refute the …keep reading »


Chapel Sermon by Aubrey Sequeira, Clyde T. Francisco Preaching Award Winner

Aubrey Sequeira won the 2013 Clyde T. Francisco Preaching Award at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. The Baptist Press covered his story – Indian student wins SBTS preaching award. Sequeira preached the final chapel message at SBTS with his sermon entitled, “Following in the Footsteps of a foot-washing King – John 13:1-17.” Russell Moore is quoted in the Baptist Press article about the sermon: The best preachers in the world have preached in SBTS chapel. But I have never heard such a Gospel-powerful sermon as Aubrey Sequeira today. Watch Sequeira preach the final chapel sermon below. Congratulations to brother Aubrey Sequeira! …keep reading »

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The Need for Preparatory Conviction by Andy Hynes

Guest blogger Andy Hynes (@ABHYNES) is a PhD candidate at Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary. Since man was dead in sin, and unable to move in a spiritual way toward God, something must take place.  God’s electing work guaranteed the sinner’s redemption, but God never says in His Word how long that process might take.  God was not going to magically redeem or convert someone.  The process of drawing an individual to the knowledge of his sin and need for grace was a genuine step.  There was great need for preparatory acts.  Flavel penned, The Spirit knocks by the gracious invitations …keep reading »


The Idea of Preparation in Puritan Preaching by Andy Hynes

Guest blogger Andy Hynes (@ABHYNES) is a PhD candidate at Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary. Puritan preaching never took a sharper prominence than during the period of preparation in the life of the sinner.  As the Father drew each elect sinner, the Holy Spirit was bringing about His convicting work.  Preparation/vocation became a staple in Puritan preaching and was referred to as God’s use of His law to convince sinners of their guilt and helplessness so that by His grace they may come to Christ.[1]   Seventeenth Century Puritanism developed a vast discourse of exhorting sinners to respond to God’s grace through …keep reading »


Interesting Tidbits on John Calvin and Preaching

I recently live blogged the G3 Conference. One of the pastors, Dr. Steve Lawson, gave a presentation on John Calvin’s preaching and what we can learn from it. I found a few items about Calvin fascinating. First, note that Lawson scaled down his material from 30-something points (as I recall) to the following six points. Authority of Biblical Truth Priority of Sequential Exposition The Accuracy of Sound Exegesis Committed to the Energy of Lively Preaching Necessity of Gospel Defense Fervency of Evangelistic Passion I agree with Lawson when he said that no man more loved or more hated or more …keep reading »


G3: Steve Lawson – The Preaching of John Calvin and What We Can Learn

This is a live blog of the G3 Conference. I will be updating along with the speakers. You can follow the line-up at: G3 Schedule. Some of the words are paraphrases of quotes that I am unable to catch. Lawson explains that no man more loved or more hated or most misunderstood than John Calvin. Even so, Calvin is the most influential. To omit John Calvin from the history of western Christianity is to read history with one eye shut. Calvin stood at the top of the movement that shaped history. He has been estimated to be greatest theologian since …keep reading »

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Subjectivity in Modern Preaching

I was recently listening to a pastor preach on the importance of prayer in pastoral ministry. Prayer is certainly important in the life of a pastor (or any Christian). The context was that this pastor was teaching future pastors. Giving his time to such teaching is a great service. However, the text he used to make his point was Acts 1:13-14 and a few things just did not sit right with me. And when they had entered, they went up to the upper room, where they were staying, Peter and John and James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and …keep reading »


Bisagno On Extending the Gospel Invitation

One of the books assigned to read for one of my classes is Pastor’s Handbook by John R. Bisagno which offers a lot of practical advice. The advice is mostly pragmatic seemingly from a consequentialist perspective. That is, Bisagno writes from experience with little Scriptural support for his advice. Bisagno’s advice is not intrinsically good or bad, right or wrong, but at times questions arise when experience seems to be his authority. Bisagno offered an interesting perspective on extending the gospel invitation during corporate worship. I am not convinced the reasoning in the advice given about extending the invitation is …keep reading »


Preaching On Sin and Responsibility

Sin and responsibility may not be the most comfortable topics about which to talk or preach. No one really wants to consider that they are responsible for something they did i.e. sin. It is much easier to blame sins on someone else as if they some how caused the sin and, therefore, avoid personal responsibility. It is much easier to compare one’s sin to another person’s much worse sin in order to minimize sin and personal responsibility. Is taking personal responsibility of sin minimized because of the way sin is expressed at times from the pulpit? Is the sinner a …keep reading »


Devotion Preached Sept 2011 MP3

I preached the Sunday evening devotion before the congregation on Sept. 5. My text for the devotion was “For nothing will be impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37 ESV). To provide context for the verse I read Luke 1:26 – 38 which is quoted below. I offered threes points of consideration: 1) God’s actions, 2) Mary’s reaction and 3) Our response and then closed by offering some application. Something sorta funny happened concerning the translation I used. Read the text and I’ll comment afterward. 26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a town …keep reading »


Preaching: Young, Restless and Four?

Paul wrote to Timothy and stated, ” Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” (1 Timothy 4:12 ESV) I don’t think Paul had a four year old preacher in mind as one way this Scripture may be applied. Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy Starting at the 1:44 mark the clip shows four year old Kanon preach: Hallelujah. I’m preaching about…I’m preaching about the one God. Like a man’s church to the man’s church of Pentecost…of Pentecost…of …keep reading »


Sermon: Drinking Is Not Drunkeness

Eddie Exposito, a pastor friend from Louisiana, preached a sermon about the biblical approach to alcohol. The sermon, linked below, is called Drinking Is Not Drunkenness. He addresses some of the unbiblical approaches to alcohol that are prevalent today and offers a corrective, biblical view. I thought some of you would appreciate this sermon. Drinking Is Not Drunkenness


On the Sermon Series

Tim Hawkins on the sermon series…

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February 2011 Devotion MP3

Isaiah 49:3 He said to me, “You are my servant, Israel, in whom I will display my splendor. (NIV) (ESV – in whom I will be glorified)” I.Introduction A. The focus of tonight’s devotion is on Isaiah 49:3. 1. What did God teach and how did it affect His people then? 2. How do we understand this verse today? 3. What can you take home tonight from this verse? II. Body A. What did God teach and how did it affect His people then? 1. God’s servant will restore Israel and be glorified in His servant. 2. God was bringing …keep reading »

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My Recent Sermon On James 3:7-8

Last Thursday night I got a call from a friend at a somewhat unusual time around 5:30 pm. It was a friend named Kevin Griggs who pastors a local church a few cities north of me. Due to unexpected events he asked if I could fill his pulpit that Sunday. We spoke the next morning to confirm that he did, in fact, need me to preach Sunday. So, I had less than two days to prepare a sermon. So I just bought one for a small, one-time fee of $50. I’m just kidding! You’ll know I’m kidding if you listen. …keep reading »


Spurgeon on Impressive and Borrowed Sermons

Justin Taylor recently posted TGC Asks Don Carson: When Has a Preacher Crossed the Line into Plagiarism in His Sermon? Carson starts by explaining that it is always wrong to preach someone else’s sermon as if it were your own. A related question is whether it’s right or wrong for a preacher to admittedly deliver another’s sermon. While people will disagree whether or not it is proper to borrow sermons, it seems that practice is nothing new since even Charles Spurgeon addressed this topic. While Spurgeon mentions sermon borrowing directly, the whole quote below has implications for preaching borrowed sermons. “Fourthly, …keep reading »


An Illustration On Urgency: Starring Satan

Below is a great illustration I ran across on urgency. I thought I’d share it. The story of told of three apprentice devils being trained by Satan. ‘What are you going to try today?’ asks the leader. The first apprentice replies, ‘I’m going to tell them there is no God.’ ‘Well,’ says Satan, ‘you can try. A few fools will believe you. But the universe shouts the existence of God. There is evidence all around and you’ll not do very well. Indeed, even in the secular twenty-first century you may find your self witnessing the slow death of atheism. Any …keep reading »

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A Letter From Hell

Pastor Jeremy Rhode of  Faith Lutheran Church in Capistrano Beach, CA has graciously allowed me to publish the text of his sermon A Letter From Hell. This sermon is based on the parable of The Rich Man and Lazarus from Luke 16:19-31. Pastor Rhode offers what a letter from the rich man writing from hell may look like. Though not a rich man, the materialism in the letter really hits home. It is scary just how easy it is to identify with the rich man. Yet it is eternally comforting that Christ offers forgiveness of those sins and a new identity for …keep reading »


Thabiti On the Gospel and Witnessing, Secrets and Tricks

Desiring God 2010 National Conference Thabiti Anyabwile’s topic was Thinking for the Sake of Global Faithfulness: Confronting Islam with the Mind of Christ. Of all the good words Thabiti shared one thing stood out as a great reminder for all Christians. Although he was speaking about witnessing to Muslims, any type of person or group may be easily substituted and Thabiti’s words applied. It is an especially good reminder as we think of how to witness to non-Christians today. (Hint: It is the same as it was in the 1st Century.) What I fear is a lack of confidence in …keep reading »


September 2010 Devotion MP3

Theme: No one but Jesus can tame the tongue, which is evil and full of poison. I. Introduction “Tonight we’re going to look at taming the tongue. We will be in James chapter 3, which explains how no one can tame their own tongue. We will see the root of the tongue’s true problem and how only Jesus can solve this problem. Open your Bibles to James 3:7-8, pew Bible page #855.  “James 3:7-8  7 All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea are being tamed and have been tamed by man, 8 but no man can …keep reading »

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Did Jesus Preach Paul’s Gospel?

As I was thinking recently about faith and justification a commenter made an assertion about a conflict between Jesus’ and Paul’s gospel. I was reminded John Piper’s excellent talk from T4G 2010 where he answers the question: Did Jesus preach Paul’s gospel? The text Piper spoke on was from Luke 18:9-14 about the Pharisee and the Tax Collector. He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by …keep reading »


August 2010 Devotion MP3

This is a short devotion I gave on Malachi 3:3-4 during our evening worship service on August 1, 2010. I tried a little different approach in this devotion. Below is my rough outline. Critiques welcomed and encouraged! I. Introduction


Teaching The Bible: Still Unpopular, Still Essential by Phillip Jensen

Below is an article written by Phillip Jensen, founder of Matthias Media and writer of the gospel outline in Two Ways To Live. Though the article is a few years old I found it extremely relevant and helpful. Teaching The Bible: Still Unpopular, Still Essential by Phillip Jensen Yoga is to Hinduism what Billy Graham is to Christianity. The way we practice our religion will depend very much upon our theology. If God is ‘the force’, then we will attune ourselves to that force; if God is personal, then we will enter into personal relationship with him; and if God …keep reading »


July Devotion MP3

This is a short devotion I gave on Ezekiel 36:25-26 during our evening worship service on July 25, 2010. Below is my rough outline. Critiques welcomed and encouraged! Ezekiel 36:25-26 (Correlating with the morning sermon: Be Born Again – John 3:1-21) I. Introduction


Haddon Robinson On Truth In Sermon Illustrations

It can be tempting to exaggerate or lie when trying to entertain or persuade others. This is understandable as it is nice to feel appreciated and engaged. It is an easy trap to fall into, especially, if one’s flesh gets in the way. Christians too? Even though the Christian is called to glorify Christ in all aspects of their lives they struggle with this too. Unfortunately, this can happen even while preaching. Some may feel that certain exaggerations or inaccuracies are fine as long as they persuade people to come to Christ. Haddon Robinson offers some good advice on such …keep reading »


Sermon listening

Most Christians listen to sermons weekly. And many listen to some other kind of biblical teaching during the week. How often is a second thought given about what exactly is going on in our mind when listening? In other words, how do we listen? Challies has a review of a book called Expository Listening by Ken Ramey which reminded me of my sermon notes this past Sunday. The sermon was on how to listen to preaching. I found it helpful and thought I would share some notes I took. This is just a sketch and anything that may be missing …keep reading »


March Devotion MP3

This is a devotion I gave at our evening service on March 7. The first 1.5 minutes did not get recorded so I added it myself. The change in audio can be heard on the recording. It is interesting how different it was trying to recreate this short intro sitting at my computer versus being in the pulpit. Again, I want to acknowledge the appreciation I have for those who preach weekly. It is not an easy task and it is not a light task to handle the word of God as such. As always, critiques welcome.

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Heresy Two-step

On a recent Fighting for the Faith radio program host Chris Rosebrough had Pastor Bryan Wolfmueller as a guest to help with a sermon review. During the sermon review Wolfmueller mentioned something he called a heresy two-step. It’s a process that some might use to preach heresy or some position/doctrine that that is not from the text. The way Wolfmueller identified the process


August Devotion MP3

I gave this devotional for our Sunday evening service on August 16. My previous devotion was the evening of April 5 if you’d like to listen. My text for this devotion was Isaiah 24:23 The moon will be abashed, the sun ashamed; for the LORD Almighty will reign on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem, and before its elders, gloriously. (NIV) I hope this is edifying to those who listen. I would love to hear any feedback whether encouraging or constructive.


Dynamite Sermon Illustrations

As the story goes, we get our word dynamite from the Greek word dunamis.  Dunamis means power.  This can be a powerful illustration in a sermon where we read about the power of God in the Bible. We can actually see the dynamite of God!  Powerful!  Right? 


April Devotion MP3

My pastor said something I found funny while introducing me.  He mentioned that I was a blogger.  I was still too nervous at that point to comment. Below is a recording of the devotion I gave that I wrote about yesterday.  I hope it’s edifying.  If not, then shoot the messenger (me) because the message of the Gospel was clearly given to us. Any feedback whether positive or constructive is appreciated.


Ask John Piper: Pornification of the Pulpit

John Piper is taking questions again: Ask John Piper a Question on Twitter (Note: you don’t have to use twitter, check the link.) My question via twitter is: @desiringgod #apj Pastor John, what did you think of Phil Johnson’s recent sermon on “Pornification of the Pulpit”? Why ask this?  If you aren’t familiar with this “controversy” go and listen to Phil Johnson’s sermon from almost two weeks ago at the Shepherd’s Conference.  Download it here: Sound Doctrine; Sound Words Titus 2:7-8. Phil Johnson tackle some of the current issues surrounding some of the language and imagery used in the pulpit …keep reading »


Ten Indictments Against the American Church by Paul Washer

A practical denial of the sufficiency of Scripture. An ignorance of God. A failure to address man’s malady. An ignorance of the gospel of Jesus Christ. An ignorance of the doctrine of regeneration.* An unbiblical gospel invitation. Ignorance regarding the nature of the Church. A lack of loving and compassionate Church discipline. A silence on separation. Lack of children being taught in the home. Praise God for men like Paul Washer who aren’t afraid to preach such truths attacking the elephants in the room. Mark *Mr. Washer said “fourth” twice so I am re-numbering them accordingly. 🙂


Deeper Conference, First Baptist Woodstock: Paul Washer

In a previous post I blogged about the Deeper Conference.  I didn’t get to attend as I’d hope, but below is one of Paul Washer’s presentations that is quickly becoming very popular. Play the audio above or download MP3 here. Enjoy! Mark


The Story of Jesus’ Birth by Martin Luther

I. The Birth of Jesus Christmas Text: Luke 2:1-14 The Story of Jesus’ Birth 1. It is written in Hag 2:6-7, that God says, “I will shake the heavens; and the precious things of all nations shall come.” This is fulfilled today, for the heavens were shaken, that is, the angels in the heavens sang praises to God. And the earth was shaken, that is, the people on the earth were agitated; one journeying to this city, another to that throughout the whole land, as the Gospel tells us. It was not a violent, bloody uprising, but rather a peaceable …keep reading »


Hard but true words from John Piper

In other words, in this research the term “born again” refers to people who say things. They say, “I have a personal commitment to Jesus Christ. It’s important to me.” They say, “I believe that I will go to heaven when I die. I have confessed my sins and accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior.” Then the Barna Group takes them at their word, ascribes to them the infinitely important reality of the new birth, and then blasphemes that precious biblical reality by saying that regenerate hearts have no more victory over sin than unregenerate hearts. The New Testament Moves …keep reading »


Deal and sermon of the week

Deal of the Week Tom Ascol over at Founders Ministries has blogged that James P. Boyce’s Abstract of Systematic Theology is back in print.  Not only that, but for a limited time it’s available for only $12.50 plus $3.50 for postage and handling which will be priced at $29.95 once this deal expires.  You can get 534 pages worth of historic Southern Baptist theology delivered to your door for a mere $16.00.  If anyone can spare the cash maybe one can be sent to your pastor, church leaders, Ergun & Emir Caner, Jerry Falwell, Paige Patterson or even our new …keep reading »


Southern Baptists the coffins are here and Voddie’s got the hammer!

Do you want to here the straight truth about what’s going on in the SBC? Inflated baptismal numbers? Unregenerate members? Actually preaching the Gospel? Church discipline? Want to hear about “the dance”? You can hear about all of these things and more at this years Eastern Evangelism Conference in Hampton Voddie Baucham brings it. My buddy Frank turned me onto Voddie’s sermon on The Centrality of the Home which is also excellent. To make it easy here is the link to Voddie’s sermon. Not only does Voddie drive the final nail in the coffin, but he drives it in with …keep reading »


Timely sermon: Rolfe Barnard’s The God Nobody Is Mad At

Friend and fellow georgian, Pastor David King suggested this sermon. You can read it or listen to it or both if you like. The opening paragraph of the sermon reminds me a lot of how the Gospel is given today. I went to a big Bible Conference, Southern Baptist Fellowship last week; and one more time I had to go and begin to cry to God. I am in one of my periods of agony, I am either up or down. I want to speak on the God that nobody is mad at. My impressions during the solemn time of …keep reading »

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Is the sermon about Jesus?

I often listen to Todd Wilken on the Issues, Etc. radio show. He evaluates sermons of various preachers and he has three “rules” that he uses. Below I am going to put them in my own words. They are: 1. Is Jesus mentioned in the sermon and how much? 2. If Jesus is mentioned, is He the subject of the verbs or is He the object of the verbs? In other words, is the sermon about what Jesus has done for you or what you will do (have done) for Jesus. 3. If Jesus is the subject, what are those …keep reading »