Friday, January 3, 2014

Stuempfle, 1990. Chapter 6, "Law and Gospel in the Sermon"

Chapter 6, “Law and Gospel in the Sermon” pp. 76-95

As Stuempfle has discussed Law and Gospel he has run a risk that Law, Gospel, and the requirement of obedience may be seen as three distinct entities which are quite independent. In fact they are interrelated, working together in an organic manner. In this final chapter he tries to pull everything together and show how living realities work in sermon preparation.

First, the Scripture is in the position of greatest authority. The preacher must listen to the message of God’s Word, finding the balance of Law and Gospel.

Second, the particular congregation is listening in a particular setting. Every sermon belongs in its context. We cannot divorce the sermon from the hearers or we fail to communicate.

Finally, the preacher acts as the catalyst for God’s Word to speak to the congregation. It is the preacher who ties the Word of God to the world in which the congregation exists.

Stuempfle closes the book with a narrative description of how he considered God’s Word on two different occasions to prepare sermons. He walks through his self-discovery of God’s particular message for a particular congregation.

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