Saturday, October 31, 2009

Book Review: Preach The Word

Kent Hughes has enjoyed an immensely faithful and fruitful ministry, and so on the occasion of his retirement from College Church in Wheaton Illinois, an international group of scholars and pastor-teachers combined to author a book in Kent's honour. Appropriately, given Kent's lifelong commitment to expository preaching, the essays are centred on the work of expository preaching of the Scriptures.

There are simply too many great parts of the book to include them all in this brief review. Suffice to say that the authors share the observation that for many, the sermon is not how it should be. Too often, the Bible is read but not explained, or used as a jumping-off point for the speaker's opinions and ideas. Preach The Word is a stirring call to follow the example of Kent Hughes, return to the Bible, and to do what it says on the tin: preach the word!

The first section is aimed to help the preacher in the basic skills of preparing and preaching. Material covered includes preaching Old Testament narratives, literature as a genre, right and wrong interpretations, among others. Section 2 demonstrates preaching through Paul's example, as well as Richard Baxter and Charles Simeon. Section 3 deals with the contemporary challenges and aims, with an excellent chapter from Don Carson, and helpful chapters from Phillip Jensen and Philip Ryken. The book closes with a section on training the next generation of gospel workers, thinking through the whole-seminary effort to raise a preacher rather than it being left to a homiletics lecturer, and schemes such as apprenticeships and preaching conferences where iron sharpens iron.

If you're in a Bible teaching ministry, then this book will be extremely helpful. I've purposely not provided any quotes in this review as there are a number of issues I want to think more about before blogging in the near future. I obtained this book as my ordination gift from my parish, and it will be read and re-read over the coming years. It would be an ideal gift for a young pastor or someone considering the call. Buy it and share it, as we earnestly seek to Preach The Word!

No comments:

Post a Comment