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Ralph Douglas West on the Benefits of Being Shaped by Black and White Preaching Traditions

“I want to make sure that my homiletical hunches are lined up with theology, history, church history.”

“How do you apply it? What is the application? What do you apply? And as far as I’m concerned, in my preaching that’s the hardest move of the sermon.”

“In our staff meetings, I will ask that sometimes, you know, Tyrone, what is going on with our young people? I’ll say to Brenda in our ministries, what are some of the big needs that are coming up? And all of this helps shape my pastoral relationship with the people that’s in front of me. So my exegesis is not just biblical text. It’s people in the congregation and the world that they live in.”

“I’m always considering that somebody has brought somebody with them [to church] today. And the only reason why they came is because they’re just satisfying a request that somebody made.”

“The gospel works and I preach believing that people will hear the gospel and respond to it in a positive way. Maybe not on that third week, maybe three months, a year later. I don’t believe that good seed falls and that it doesn’t find good soil. It will find good soil.”

Mentioned in the Show

1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Ezekiel 37
Hebrews 10:24-25

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Power in the Pulpit: How America’s Most Effective Black Preachers Prepare Their Sermons,” Ed. Cleophus James LaRue