If you are not familiar with Steven Smith, who pastors in Little Rock, Arkansas, this would be a good opportunity to listen to him. He really is one of the best. I am always reminded how different good-to-great preachers are, yet they are alike in one respect — they work at being effective!
In this sermon, #1- Steven Smith exemplifies how TO APPROACH a sermon WITH your audience. He also illustrates #2 – the nature of “feasible” and “defeasible” sermonic content (I may be getting into the “weeds” with some.).
This video clip should help.
FIRST, as Steven Smith explains to his audience how he is going to approach the passage, he is also disclosing his understanding of how to handle different kinds of Scriptural material.
In this clip, Smith is not only examining the content of the passage, but his approach to the passage. Technically, his approach to the passage is not expository — yet it is. While “his approach” is not part of the content or the context of the passage (that is, what he is saying is not specifically found stated in the passage), Smith is still “exposing” to the audience the nature of the passage. He is also “exposing” what Jesus was attempting to do, which is also unstated, but is still fairly and rightfully part of biblical exposition!
Transcript With Identifiers That Categories The Flow
What Jesus Is trying to do:and this is exactly what Jesus is trying to do . . . . he’s trying to disassociate in their minds food as something that was just given to them as individual sustenance — to sustain their lives and food that is given to them from Godso in john chapter 6 verses 22 all the way down to verse 59 . . . . we have one of the most daunting passages in all the bible Jesus is unpacking what it means that he is the bread of life — he’s the foodWhat is the nature of this passage:and a question comes when you have such a large passive scripture how are we going to structure this time how are we going to structure the sermon how are we going to think about this passage of scripture√ it’s not a story — that would be natural you could talk about the different scenes inside the story it moves from the setting to the scene one and the scene two and these type of things√ if it were a letter an epistle like . . . . galatians ephesians philippians colossians . . . you would look at theargument the way that the apostle paul is structuring an argument inside there but it’s not that√ it’s it’s a conversation so the structure is is that they ask Jesus this questionNow the conversation:here’s the question they asked jesus — look at verse 25when they found him on the other side of the sea they said to him rabbi when didyou come hereNow some passage context:so remember . . . Jesus snuck away to the mountains the disciples took the boatthe previous context tells us they saw the disciples leave the boat they didn’t see jesus get into the boat because jesus got there by walking on the waterso they asked him when did you get herePersonal observation:It would be a better question a funnier question if they would ask him how did you get here and he could have said you know I walked but they didn’t ask him that . . . they said when did you get hereBack to the nature of the passage and the actual conversation:we learned from verse 59 that actually they’re in the synagogue
when all this conversation is taking place and they’re still pursuing him to think about thisand so it’s a conversationhe responds back twiceit says . . . he says to them . . . “He said to them”and then the jews there in the synagogue . . . . the jewish leaders they confront him so twice they say back to himso it’s a conversation of back and forth — verses 22-59What Jesus is doing in the passage, in this conversation:but Jesus is controlling this conversationand in controlling the conversation he drives it back to four themesas you read this a few times you realize these four themes become buoyant they keep coming up to the surfacefour things Jesus is driving them back toNow the content setting up the four points:so let’s talk about the four themes it’s not about the food it’s not about the bread then what it’s about it’s about these four themes here’s the first one if you want to write these down the first theme that jesus is talking about it’s not about the bread here’s what it’s aboutFirst of all jesus wants them to understand that he came from heaven — Jesus was sent from heaven
It is a conversation, not a story or a letter.
He is controlling the conversation.
He is driving these ideas with those who followed Him
Nevertheless . . .