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                                                                          Classification of Sermon

                                                                                                                                                                Dr. Ricardo Park

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This article is about classification of sermon. This is very important to know what kind of different form of sermon exists. However this article is not enough although I like to read it with you together. This article shows so-called traditional homiletic, not new homiletic. But for me to understand this traditional homiletic is our basis to start. Without know this traditional homiletic it is dangerous just to go to new homiletic world. Although we may call traditional homiletic as old homiletic, compared to new homiletic, still many preachers use traditional method of preaching in their pulpit.

The reason why I introduce and read this article with you is to let you know traditional homiletic and its boundary. You should be able to preach with traditional way basically before you try new method. For mi, there is no new or old homiletic. Always we have done both of those, and still we should do both. Here if I say something about this difference and the reason of difference is their using of different tool for preaching: Old homiletic uses logic; new homiletic uses dialectic. This may sound difficult. Speaking easily, traditional preaching makes points which prove main idea or theme. For example, main message is “We should love our neighbor by embracing them.” And then we can use “how” question: “How we can embrace our neighbor to love?” And then we have right answers not wrong answer because this is logical. “1.By forgiving their mistakes  2.By spending time together 3.By inviting them to our house.” But in the new homiletic where we use dialectic utilizes thesis-antithesis-synthesis. This sermon also has same message: “We should love our neighbor by embracing them,” and then we need wrong answer or twisted answer or opposite answer: “We fight with our neighbors often times because of their rudeness and selfishness.” This is antithesis. Then we need to synthesize: “Therefore although it is not easy we should try to love our neighbor.”

Well, this may sound difficult for you but don’t worry. In the new homiletic preachers can use wrong answer as one of points or moves, while in the old homiletic it is not possible to suggest wrong answer. New Homiletic shows more process to reach at the truth through wrong path like we are all making mistakes and wrong decisions in our lives. I think this is big difference, showing wrong answers and mistakes as a way to reach at the truth, not like logical way there is no wrong answer.

Also this article show many different type of sermon structures, which you can use when you fill the 8 petals in flower preaching. Don’t try to imitate all these theories. Once you learn all this possibility you can apply to your own creation. I like you to read this article with you with only this purpose. But this is very well written article from which we can learn many things. Let us read together!... I will read one paragraph first, and then all of you read next paragraph… or I will read all of this article and you listen to me and then later we will discuss about this. Or one by one you read each paragraph, and then we will discuss later with questions. One moment, please stop there, because we need to talk and discuss about something. Does everybody follow me well? So far so good? Do you follow me well? If you have question we can talk later.

Okay, here are some questions to discuss:

1.    What did you learn from this article?

2.     How can you apply this article to your preaching ministry?

3.     Do you understand three methods of preaching according to text use?

4.     How do you do topical or thematic preaching?

5.     How do you do textual sermon?

6.     How do you do expository sermon?

7.     What is difference among them?

8.     Do you understand all different types of sermon outlines here?

9.     Which method of sermon plan do you like?

10. How can you apply these different plans to flower preaching?


    (Clarence S. Roddy, “La Clasificacaion de Sermones,” Diccionario de la Teologia

Practica: Homiletica, Libros Desafio, pp.19-26).