Preachers Sermon Illustrations

Preachers Sermon Illustrations

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The Principal's Criticism

Years ago it was the custom in a certain theological college for the student who had preached in sermon class to go into the Principal's room next morning for a quiet talk on the sermon. On one such occasion the revered and saintly old Principal said to the young man before him: "It was a good sermon you gave us yesterday; the truth you dealt with was well arranged and well presented. But your sermon had one omission, a grave one. There was no word in it for a poor sinner like me."—The Rev. A. E. J. Cosson, in the United Methodist Magazine.

The Sermon Lincoln Enjoyed

Abraham Lincoln put it rather strongly but effectively nevertheless, when he said: "I do not care for cut and dried sermons. When I hear a man preach I like to see him act as if he were fighting bumble bees!"—Selected.

Why Moody Used Stories

Of course, there were those who criticized his constant use of "stories." "People," Moody once said, "don't seem to understand why I use these stories. It is to touch the heart, and while it is soft, to send right in the arrow of truth." With pathos and tender feeling he would use his simple illustrations and touching stories with a great disregard of all secondary considerations of any kind whatever. His most moving appeals, his gentle persuasiveness, his most passionate declamations, his most direct home-thrusts, his reference to people and places, were all used for the highest ends. Happily, many of Moody's unique stories have been preserved for us in his book on Anecdotes.—Selected.

Unconverted Preacher

It would be a great mercy if every converted person would positively refuse to listen twice to any minister who denies the inspiration of the Bible, or to give a penny to a church or missionary society that gave the right hand of fel­lowship to men of this type.Sunday.

More Interest in Antichrist than Christ

Dr. A. C. Gaebelein is credited with saying, "I find many people whose consuming passion is to know more and more about the Antichrist." Others of us have met these people, too. If it is advertised that Christ is to be presented to the congregation, the hearing may be small, but if the preacher is to identify the Antichrist, there may be hardly room in the building. Which may mean that people would rather hear a man tell what he does not know than speak of what he understands. But this may mean also that too few people realize that one's first responsibility is to get Christ for himself and then bring Him into the lives of others.The Free Methodist.

Eliminating the Ministry

Woodrow Wilson spoke these words of preachers and they are worthy of the careful consideration of every one of us: "When I hear some of the things which young men say to men by way of putting the arguments to themselves for going into the ministry, I think they are talking of another profession. Their motive is to do something.

"You do not have to be anything in particular to be a lawyer, and I know. You do not have to be anything in particular, except a kind-hearted man perhaps, to be a physician. You do not have to be anything, nor undergo any strong spiritual change, in order to be a merchant. The only profession which consists in being something is the ministry of our Lord and Saviour—and it does not consist of anything else.
"And that conception of the ministry which rubs all the marks off and mixes him in the crowd so that you cannot pick him out, is a process of eliminating the ministry itself."Word and Way.

The Sight that Blinds

The apostle Paul was perhaps one of the greatest travelers of his day. He visited many lands, and saw many new scenes in different countries. When he returned he wrote a good deal; his epistles were widely read by the early churches. And yet, in all the writings of the apostle, there is not one line that is descriptive of the scenery of the countries through which he passed; not a line telling of the wonders of the architecture of his day; not a line describing the customs of the people. Is not this singular? There is a reason for it. The apostle was blind. As he traveled about he was blind to all else but one thing. On the way to Damascus, when he met the Lord Jesus, he was blinded by the vision of His great glory, and from that time he could see nothing but Him and tell of nothing but His Gospel.—The Rev. R. A. Jaffray, in The Sunday School Times.

Pastoral Success

Requisites for pastoral success are the following: "The strength of an ox, the daring of a lion, the industry of a beaver, the versatility of a chameleon, the vision of an eagle, the disposition of an angel, the loyalty of an apostle, the heroism of a martyr, the faithfulness of a prophet, the tenderness of a shepherd, the fervency of an evangelist, and the devotion of a mother."

That is rather a formidable picture in its demands, and yet it is not going too far to say that many or most of these qualifications are found in many true Christian ministers, and have been since the time of the apostles. One could go through the whole list of "requisites" and find Scripture authority for each. The kaleidoscopic description brings to mind such Scripture passages as these:

"Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might."
"Having done all, to stand."
"Be ye steadfast, unmovable."
"Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid."Sunday School Times.

Points for Preachers

An exchange has the following story: A minister preached on 1 Corinthians 13:1. The reporter for the daily paper, strangely enough, got it right, but the linotype operator, in setting the word "charity," made the mistake of using an "l" instead of an "h," and the proof­reader overlooked it. So the minister was reported in the morning paper as having preached from the following text: "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not clarity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal." Commenting on the story the editor says: "As it appears in print it was not New Testament truth, but it was truth, nevertheless. The people want the preacher to be luminous rather than voluminous, and the preacher who is without clarity will soon be without a congregation."—Courtesy Moody Monthly.

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