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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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    We are a community of confessing believers who love the gospel of Jesus Christ, affirm the Biblical and Christ-exalting truths of the Reformation such as the five solas, the doctrines of grace, monergistic regeneration, and the redemptive historical approach to interpreting the Scriptures.

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    Sermon Illustrations

    I'll be brief. That means, "Don't get upset at me for not thoroughly discussing every facet of the topic."

    I deeply appreciate good sermon illustrations, but think that illustrations should be used with great caution. They should be used to communicate ideas that might not otherwise easily connect with an audience, whether intellectually or emotionally. Preachers should think hard about whether their illustrations do in fact promote the reception of the message they want to convey, or whether they might actually divert attention from the message. A captivating illustration can easily distract a listener from hearing what the preacher continues to say after the illustration is finished (including the very association he was trying to make in the illustration). And if the connection with the point at hand is not clear and strong enough, the memory will discard what was difficult to understand in favor of what was more accessible.

    Do you remember the last powerful sermon illustration you heard? Do you remember the point that the preacher meant to make by it? Or do you just remember a vivid story? If the latter, then the illustration failed its intended purpose.

    Posted by Eric Costa on November 5, 2009 11:57 PM

    Comments

    Imagine my disappointment when I clicked over here to find an illustration and only found you telling me not to use them (very often). Maybe the blog should have been called USING Sermon Illustrations.

    Thanks for blogging
    Charlie

    Charlie

    Sorry about the confusion - I hope I didn't come across as discouraging the usage of illustrations! Simply advocating the CAREFUL use of them…

    Charlie's disappointment and confusion is a good illustration of something. :-)

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