Rhetoric & Homiletics: Another Warning Voice

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Another Voice Highlighting The Trend & The Danger


In a book review of Syndey Greidanuss book, “Preaching Christ from the Old Testament: A Contemporary Hermeneutical Method,”  Caleb Kolstad states . . . . 

“Concerning weaknesses of this book, there are a few. At times it appeared that the author’s insistence on employing “Christocentric” hermeneutics pushes the expositor towards eisogesis rather than towards sound exegesis. Students and teachers of Scripture have to be very careful so as to not read their biblical theology and preconceived outcomes/understandings into the inspired text.” 1


Ken Langley waves the same flag as Kolstad.

There’s an old story about a pastor giving a children’s sermon. “I’m thinking of one of our forest friends,” he says, “Does anyone want to guess who it might be?” No one ventures a guess, so he continues, “This friend is small and gray and has a bushy tail. Now do you know who I mean?” No answer. “This forest friend is shy and scampers up a tree when you get too close.” Still no guesses from the silent children. “This friend likes to bury nuts in the ground. Surely you know who I’m talking about now!” Finally one kid pipes up, “I know you want us to say ‘Jesus,’ but it sounds like a squirrel to me.”

Somehow this kid had gotten the idea that every sermon has to be about Jesus.2


Maybe it is time to draw some serious attention to this “warmed-over homiletical trend” which is seriously flawed.

It is not expository preaching because it leans towards eisogesis, not exegesis.

It confuses the nature of Scripture — All Scripture assumes Christ, but is not all Scripture is about Christ.

It produces some terrible and bizarre attempts to find Christ in the Old Testament — oi.e. Samson is a type of Christ!

It will produce pulpit ministries which flattens out the biblical landscape.


1. Preaching Christ From the Old Testament
Caleb  Kolstad
Caleb Kolstad


2. http://ehomiletics.com/willhite/2008_langley.pdf


3. Article published by Ted Martens, Baptist Bulletin — “PREACHING AND THE THEATER OF THE ABSURD”

Preaching and the Theater of the Absurd

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