How I Prepare, Preach, and Publish Sermons When Time Is Short

Good pastors are busy people. I was reminded of this last week when I filled in for my own pastor and had to fit sermon prep for a Sunday morning message into my own schedule. Amidst entertaining two out-of-town guests and two out-of-continent guests (we had a blast!) I had to find about seven hours of prep time. When I finally got to sit down Saturday afternoon while kids were napping, I found myself very naturally turning right to Logos.

I use Logos, SoundFaith, and other Faithlife products because I literally do not know how I would do my work without them in the limited time I have. I want to offer you some (I hope) time-saving, Bible-study-enhancing insight into my own sermon preparation, preaching, and publishing process.

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The Twist in the Sermon on the Mount That You Probably Missed

Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount amazed its original hearers; it subverted their expectations on multiple levels. It’s the meek who win the world. Believers are supposed to be happy when persecuted. And then this: Jesus, this new teacher with authority, came not to abolish but to fulfill the Old Testament.

His six famous “antitheses” (“You have heard . . . but I say to you . . . “) help explain what he means by “fulfilling” the law. But I think you, like me, may have missed something else unexpected in his comments—specifically those about anger.

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4 Simple Tips for Getting the Most out of Logos Bible Software

In my work as a Logos Pro, I sometimes hear users say, with a resigned, apologetic tone, “I probably use only 5 percent of the capabilities of Logos.” People with lots of responsibility, lots of training, lots of gifting, and lots of experience in ministry or scholarship (or both) all of the sudden grow bashful and embarrassed. They stare at the floor like it’s report card day. They crawl into nearby holes.

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What Would the Author of “Amazing Grace” Say about Social Media?

John Newton wrote a beautiful letter to a friend which is called in his collected works, “On Controversy”—because that friend was about to engage in public controversy over Christian doctrine; Newton wanted to give him some scriptural counsel. I have read it 20 times over nearly as many years, and thought of it countless more. In order to more fully get the principles into my own soul—because I, frankly, have not always lived up to them—I have taken the liberty of “transculturating” it for today’s Christian SMWs—Social Media Warriors. If Newton were to write the same letter today, this is my guess as to what he would write:

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Why Does Logos Say “Dine” Is a Metaphor in Luke 14:1?

The Figurative Language dataset in Logos marks the word “dine” in Luke 14:1 as a metaphor. Why?

Can you figure it out? I’ll give you ten Logos Pro points if you get the right answer.

One Sabbath, when he went to dine at the house of a ruler of the Pharisees, they were watching him carefully.

In a previous post, I showed Logos users how to automatically mark all figurative language in the New Testament with blue text. I’ve kept that visual filter on for my own Bible study, and that’s why I myself recently ran across this little puzzle.

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3 Reasons Preachers Shouldn’t Publicly Contradict a Bible Translation

I cringe almost every time I hear a preacher criticize a particular phrase from an English Bible translation in preaching—even and especially those times when I caught myself doing it before I could stop myself. We preachers and Bible teachers would do better not to publicly correct the Bible translations on people’s laps.

Here are three reasons why.

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5 More Reasons Bible Teachers Should Learn Greek & Hebrew

Why should Bible teachers go through the pain of learning and then using the original languages of Scripture? I gave you five reasons last week, but persuasion doesn’t occur solely because of reasons. Sometimes personal testimony is most effective. So here are five more, non-standard, non-reason reasons for learning the original languages.

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How to Get Free Logos Books and Other Swag

Want to see all the free Logos books you don’t already have?

Want to see what Logos books are on sale?

Want to see what’s cheap?

One of our users in the Logos forums recently shared with other users the links he uses to check all these things (and more) periodically on Logos.com. Here’s his full post. I’ll share with you a few of the highlights.

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5 Reasons Studying the Original Languages Is Worth the Pain

greek hebrewShould pastors and other Bible teachers bother to learn Greek and Hebrew? You can use Greek and Hebrew without having to memorize a single paradigm, let alone 3,000 vocab words, so why torture yourself?

I’ll give you ten reasons studying the original languages is worth the pain, five this week and five next.

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How to Search Connections between Greek and English Bibles

Do you ever need to perform searches that connect English with Greek? For example, do you ever need to find out how a specific translation treats a given grammatical construction?

This is nearly impossible to do without the specialized tagging in Logos.

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