Alec Motyer sets out in this very small but useful book to help preachers or would be preachers to have a good grasp of what preaching is like and should be. Don’t expect to find anything fancy here, it’s the usual steps that you will find in most books on preaching.
However, this book does set the tone in the beginning that preaching is HARD work. And no preaching does not just “come out”. Good preaching comes when you work hard at trying to understand the text, finding/thinking of relevant application and presenting it in a clear and memorable way.
Motyer slowly guides the reader along as though we took at peek at him preparing his sermon in the study. Motyer first reminds us that our sermons must always be driven by the Bible (text) and nothing else. The preacher’s job is first and foremost to explain what the text mean.
He then reminds us that the focus of the bible is Christ, and that we ought to be christ-centered in our preaching also. He also shows us how should not moralise (especially) the Old Testament characters.
Motyer teaches us really simple steps while preparing the sermon. First read the text, then note down the important phrases or points within the passage, next using a concordance find the meaning of some of these words (especially those you’re struggling to understand). Following which you work on the structure of the text, the presentation and application.
What the could be improved in this book could be to add some exercises that a person could do at the end of every chapter. Don’t get me wrong, this is not a theoretical book, it does contain many useful and helpful outlines on various passages done by the author himself. But, I do think that doing the exercises at the end would really drive the point home. This however, is just a minor issue within the book. It’s still is very practical and helpful to any preacher.
This really is a small and easy book, it’ll be a good refresher course for preachers who have been preaching for some time. There is always a danger of slowly changing our sermons so that we can have a “better response”. This book would help remain them the main scope of preaching, and also to encourage them to remain the course. Second, this would be a good primer for anyone who is intending to preach, no technical terms are used, and chapters are small and easily digestible. Added inside is also some reading plans that churches could use to help the congregation mediate on relevant text before coming on a sunday to hear the word of God preached.