Project Documents

Date of Award

1975

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Louis Venden

Second Advisor

Robert Moon, Jr.

Third Advisor

Thomas Blincoe

Abstract

Introduction

From April 6 to June 1, 1974» a series of eight sermons were preached to the .Benton Harbor, Michigan congregation of Seventh-day Adventists under the theme FAITH TO FACE THE FUTURE. Homiletical preparation was based on the method suggested by Lloyd M. Perry in his book Biblical Sermon Guide, and harmonized with methods consistent with my own theology of preaching. The series was preceded by two training sessions in listening skills for the Treatment Group designated throughout this report as Group A.

Method

Methodology was two-fold: theoretical and empirical. Research was done in selected works on homiletics and the theology of preaching which form the basis for the chapter on my theology of preaching. Research was also done in selected literature concerning the development of listening skills, which served as the basis for the chapter on listening. Material from this research formed the theory used in the training sessions for Treatment Group A. Empirical research was done by means of instruments in the form of questionnaires. After each of the sermons in the series Group A and B filled out the questionnaires. Following the fifth and the eighth sermon Group A met with the project director for dialogue which was taped and heard later by the preacher. Group B served as the control group in that they received no prior training in listening skills.

Thesis

That in order to communicate the Christian Gospel as it is presented in the letter to the Ephesians in such a way that personal insight and spiritual growth takes place in the listeners, the sermon must reflect the preachers interest in the individual as well as his concern for doctrine. The sermon must be person-centered rather than doctrine-centered. In other words, the language of the sermon must be directed toward the person in the pew instead of toward an objective doctrine which needs explanation. The emphasis is on the use of doctrine rather than on the explanation of doctrine, and the focus is on the individual.

Subject Area

Seventh-day Adventist preaching; Communication--Religious aspects--Seventh-day Adventists

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