How to Prepare Bible Messages.
by James Braga.
35th ed. Colorado Springs: Multnomah Books, 2005.
Point: Preparing messages from the Bible takes dedication, skill, and devotion to the text.
Path: Giving an overview of three popular formats for sermons, topical, textual, and expository, Braga instructs the reader on preparing messages. He spends the majority of the book outlining how to prepare an expository message, but gives brief comments concerning the topical and textual messages.
Agreement: Although there is a place for the topical sermon, I appreciated that he did not spend a great amount of time on it. Rather, he dedicated the majority of his time on the expository sermon, which seems to be the most beneficial for the church to partake of regularly. It takes a specific passage, asks what it means, and then seeks to communicate that truth to the hearer.
Braga discusses several different ideas which were a little differently defined in Robinson’s book. He deals with the proposition which is the main point of the passage (Robinson calls this the “subject” I believe), then the Interrogative sentence (Robinson calls this the “compliment”) and then the transitional statement.
Disagreement: A small quibble would be that the textual sermon seems quite similar to the expository message, but he contrasts them.
Personal App: Braga’s book is a helpful book, even though it was written nearly forty years ago. I believe one of the most beneficial areas of the book is its homework. If I were to teach a class, or mentor another man, I would consult this book for ideas concerning homework and projects to complete.
Braga also suggests that the preacher categorize illustrations as he comes across them. I don’t use actually file folders in my compilation, however, I went through and added all his suggested folders into my sermon archive on my computer.
Stars: 4 out of 5
It would be worth another read and I would recommend it.
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