In the coming weeks, I will discuss some of the patterns that Ron Allen has defined in his book Patterns of Preaching: A Sermon Sampler. That book has 34 patterns and a sermonic example of each one. Sometimes just being cognizant of the different approaches to a sermon can help to get the creative juices flowing.

The book has four sets of Patterns in it. The first section consists of Traditional Patterns. These are patterns that have stood the test of time. In it you will find patterns like “Celebration” from the African American tradition, the Puritan Plain Style, and the Hagalian Thesis-Antithesis-Synthesis, and about 7 more.

The second section consists of Contemporary Patterns. These are patterns like form sermon shapes sermon, Wilson’s four pages, Buttrick’s plot and Lowry’s narrative.

The third section consists of different Subject patterns. This consists of things like the wedding homily, funeral homily, preaching on Biblical Theme, or doctrine.

The final section consists of patterns for Theology. This consists of things like Evangelical preaching, liberation preaching, postmodern preaching, and postliberal preaching.

I am not sure how many of these we will discuss, but just looking at different patterns will help us in our preaching.

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