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Sermon #PP04

Form of The Sermon

A Lecture on Building a Sermon



Sermon Description

In this sermon titled “Form of the Sermon,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones argues that all preaching should be theological. In both evangelistic preaching and general preaching, the preacher must know both biblical theology and systematic theology; without them the preacher risks error. But while content is of utmost importance for preaching, Dr. Lloyd-Jones states, the form of the sermon is equally important. Those who rightly value content in preaching can sometimes misunderstand the value and the art of composing a sermon. What form should theological preaching take? Does the preacher think of his sermon in the same way one thinks of writing an essay? If not, what is the difference? Is there a difference between a sermon and a lecture on theology? How about a commentary on the passage? Is there a difference between a biblical sermon and a running commentary on a text? Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explores these questions in this important lecture on preaching. While the proclamation of sound doctrine is non-negotiable for preaching, sermons will not serve the people of God unless the form is equally considered. Listen as Dr. Lloyd-Jones helps preachers think through this important aspect in service of God’s church.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. Preaching must always be theological and based on Scripture. It should not just be opinions or ideas.
  2. There are three main types of sermons: evangelistic, experiential, and instructional. These types are interconnected and one sermon can have elements of multiple types.
  3. The content of a sermon comes from Scripture. The preacher receives the message from God and conveys it to the congregation.
  4. The form or structure of a sermon is very important. A sermon is not an essay, lecture, or running commentary. It should have a clear introduction, body, and conclusion.
  5. A sermon should have a clear theme or doctrine derived from the Scripture passage. The preacher should show how that theme is relevant to the congregation.
  6. The sermon should be divided into clear points or propositions that build upon each other. There should be progression and development of ideas.
  7. Application of the message should be woven throughout the sermon and especially emphasized in the conclusion. The preacher should show how the message impacts the lives of the congregation.
  8. Each sermon should be a complete whole. Even if part of a series, each individual sermon should have a clear introduction, body, and conclusion.
  9. Preparing a sermon requires effort and labor. The preacher must work to put the message into the proper form and structure. This is done for the benefit of the congregation.
  10. Though preparation is important, preaching the sermon is a separate element. The preacher does not know exactly what will happen when the sermon is preached. God can work in unexpected ways.

Sermons: Preaching and Preachers

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.