Test-Driving a New Sermon Structure

Trying something new for the first time is always a little uncomfortable. Sermon structures are no different. The first time you test-drive a shiny new sermon structure, it’s easy to feel like you are slightly out of control. Your natural cadence, your expectations, your anticipation of what your hearers will do next, your flow–all of […]

Mark Sermon Structures

By Justin Rossow In 2015 we preached through the Gospel of Mark between January and Easter. And it was *awesome.* Looking back over so many weeks in the same book of the Bible, following the same story line, preaching on the Gospel Lesson week after week after week, I am deeply grateful for the training […]

The 7 Tools for Development in Action

By Justin Rossow When we preach, we make decision about how we are going to spend our time in the pulpit. Consciously or not, we choose how we are going to help the hearer create meaning out of the sermon. If you would like to be more intentional about how you shape the “moments of meditation” […]

A Tale of Two Easters

Preachers sometimes find themselves saying the same thing over and over again. Regardless of the text or day, they feel like they are running the proclamation of the Word through the same theological ringer week after week. Yearly celebrations of the same festival can magnify that feeling: I’ve preached Easter and Resurrection 15 years in […]

Night Vision Goggles and Blended Spaces

One of my favorite Super Bowl ads is also a good example not only of metaphor theory in advertising, but of a phenomenon called “mental space blending.” Gilles Fauconnier and Mark Turner developed the theory of cognitive blending in their book The Way We Think: Conceptual Blending and the Mind’s Hidden Complexities.  For my money, I prefer […]

42 Seconds Sermon Series

Be Jesus: 42 Seconds Sermon Notes 4 of 4

Be Jesus: 42 Seconds Sermon Notes 4 of 4

Editor’s Note: This resource supports preachers and congregations in the use of the book 42 Seconds: The Jesus Model for Everyday Interactions by Carl Medearis. You can visit the 42 Seconds Resource page at justinrossow.com to see more.  The Big Idea Jesus is absolutely unique. And, in the power of the Spirit, you are absolutely like […]

Biblical Studies

Source and Target, Target, Target Domains

Source and Target, Target, Target Domains

If you know even the basics of contemporary metaphor theory, then you know that in the metaphor “Richard is a gorilla,” what we know (or think we know) about gorillas is the “Source domain.” The metaphor works by taking what we know and expect and how we reason about gorillas and mapping those inferences and […]

Cultural Studies

That One Time I Accidentally Said, “Kiss My A**” Three Times During the Gospel Lesson

That One Time I Accidentally Said, “Kiss My A**” Three Times During the Gospel Lesson

I plead ignorance on this one. But the situation still brings up legitimate questions of communication, cultural norms, and offense as a preaching technique that Jesus seemed to use, but maybe we shouldn’t … OK; here’s the situation. I’m preaching on Luke 14, the Parable of the Banquet where the rich guests who were invited […]

Example Sermons

Sermon 1: Be Kind

Sermon 1: Be Kind

Sermon 1 of 4: Be Kind, by Justin Rossow (Relational Structure) The sermon notes for this manuscript can be found here: https://justinrossow.com/be-kind. 1. ME (my personal interaction with the topic) In the name of Jesus, dear friends. I remember a cartoon. It was one of those religious cartoons – just one of those single panels. […]

Hom Helps

6 Tips for Preaching a New Structure

6 Tips for Preaching a New Structure

I forgot how uncomfortable it can be to test-drive a sermon structure you’ve never used before. Before you buckle up and take a new design out for a spin, here are some tips to get you–and your hearers–home safely. 1. Keep Your Goal in Mind I find the best way to use sermon structures effectively […]

Image and Metaphor

Paul and Lydia

Paul and Lydia

By Justin Rossow Sometimes you preach a metaphor IN the text. And sometimes you preach a metaphor FOR the text. In Acts 16, Paul meets Lydia at a river. A literal river. Nothing metaphorical about it. But the sermon below takes the image of a river–of tubing and whitewater rafting on a river–as a metaphor […]

Reviews

Outreach and Journey

Outreach and Journey

 Conceptual Metaphor in Speaking of Jesus, Part 3 Speaking of Jesus intends to move Christians beyond thinking of non-Christians as “the enemy” and of salvation as “crossing a boundary line;” instead, Medearis wants people not only to speak of, but also to follow Jesus. This view of the Christian faith—faith as following Jesus—inherently embodies a […]

Triads

Relationship Triad: Session 7

Speaking the Truth in Love: How to Be an Assertive Christian, Ruth Koch and Kenneth Haugk Session 7 Before You Meet I. Meditate 3-5 times on Hebrews 12:1-14  this week. Start with prayer for yourself and for others reading the same verse, that the same Spirit that inspired these words would open your heart and mind to them […]