Texts Sermon Illustrations

Texts Sermon Illustrations

In the Tennessee mountains a mountaineer preacher, who had declared colleges "the works of the devil," was preaching without previous meditation an inspirational sermon from the text, "The voice of the turtle shall be heard in the land." Not noting that the margin read "turtle-dove," he proceeded in this manner:

"This text, my hearers, strikes me as one of the most peculiar texts in the whole book, because we all know that a turtle ain't got no voice. But by the inward enlightenment I begin to see the meaning and will expose it to you. Down in the hollers by the streams and ponds you have gone in the springtime, my brethren, and observed the little turtles, a-sleeping on the logs. But at the sound of the approach of a human being, they went kerflop-kerplunk, down into the water. This I say, then, is the meaning of the prophet: he, speakinging figgeratively, referred to the kerflop of the turtle as the voice of the turtle, and hence we see that in those early times the prophet, looking down at the ages to come, clearly taught and prophesied the doctrine I have always preached to this congregation—that immersion is the only form of baptism."


John D. Rockefeller, Jr., once asked a clergyman to give him an appropriate Bible verse on which to base an address which he was to make at the latter's church.

"I was thinking," said young Rockefeller, "that I would take the verse from the Twenty-third Psalm: 'The Lord is my shepherd.' Would that seem appropriate?"

"Quite," said the clergyman; "but do you really want an appropriate verse?"

"I certainly do," was the reply.

"Well, then," said the clergyman, with a twinkle in his eye, "I would select the verse in the same Psalm: 'Thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.'"

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