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Preaching Jesus Christ Today

Six Questions for Moving from Scripture to Sermon

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This book approaches preaching as a theological practice and a spiritual discipline in a way that is engaging, straightforward, and highly usable for busy preachers. Bringing to bear almost three decades of practical experience in the pulpit and the classroom, Annette Brownlee explores six questions to help preachers listen to Scripture, move from text to interpretation for weekly sermon preparation, and understand the theological significance of the sermon. Each chapter explains one of the Six Questions of Sermon Preparation, provides numerous examples and illustrations, and contains theological reflections. The final chapter includes sample sermons, which put the Six Question method into practice.

Introduction: Listening to Scripture for Preaching: A Discipline in Need of Remediation
1. Question One: "What Do I See?" The Preacher as Witness
2. Question Two: "Whom Do I See?" The Preacher as Witness to Christ
3. Question Three: "What Is Christ's Word to Me?" The Preacher as Confessor
4. Question Four: "What Is Christ's Word to Us?" The Preacher as Theologian
5. Question Five: "What Is Christ's Word about Us?" The Preacher as Theologian of a Broken Body
6. Question Six: "What Does It Look Like?" The Preacher as Witness to Christ in a Disobedient World
7. Using the Six Questions: Sermon Form and Sermon Examples
Conclusion: Love as the Hermeneutical Criterion


"Drawing on the work of Lindbeck and Frei, Brownlee not only provides a substantive account of what the Holy Spirit does in and through the sermon but also develops what I can only describe as exercises to help preachers get out of the way of the Spirit. I cannot imagine a better book for teaching seminarians not only the 'what' but also the 'how' of preaching. The book is invaluable for those who have been overdetermined by theories of preaching."

Stanley Hauerwas, Gilbert T. Rowe Professor Emeritus of Divinity and Law, Duke Divinity School

"In this well-researched volume, Annette Brownlee has produced a treasure for preachers. She asks six probing theological questions about how preachers relate to biblical texts and then provides solid advice on how to explore each of them. She has a profoundly theological vision of preaching and a firm grasp of the practicalities of crafting weekly sermons. This book will be extraordinarily effective in both broadening and deepening one's repertoire of sermons."

Thomas G. Long, Bandy Professor Emeritus of Preaching, Candler School of Theology, Emory University

"With her new book Annette Brownlee honors the theological turn of homiletics with a compelling vision: an evangelical, postliberal understanding of preaching as a theological practice. Through six key theological questions, she invites preachers to dwell in the house of Scripture intratextually and thereby discern the gospel of Christ with greater depth and focus for the sake of God's people, the church."

David Schnasa Jacobsen, Boston University School of Theology

"The retrieval of figural exegesis has lacked a homiletics text until now. I pray a generation of seminarians will learn to preach from Annette Brownlee."

Jason Byassee, Butler Chair in Homiletics and Biblical Hermeneutics, Vancouver School of Theology

The Author

  1. Annette Brownlee

    Annette Brownlee

    Annette Brownlee (DMin, Wycliffe College) is chaplain, professor of pastoral theology, and director of field education at Wycliffe College, University of Toronto, where she has served for more than ten years. She previously served as an episcopal priest...

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