Date published: May 18, 2010
The Preaching of Jesus: Gospel Proclamation, Then and Now By William Brosend Westminster John Knox 176 pp., $19.95 paperback
Brosend makes four claims about how a focus on Jesus' rhetoric can improve modern preaching: One, Jesus formed his messages in dialogue with tradition, culture, the lives of his listeners and especially scripture. Two, Jesus' preaching focused on proclaiming God's reign in such a way that lives might be changed. His messages prophetically resisted the powers, whether religious, statist or cultural. Three, there's too much self-revelation in contemporary preaching, in marked contrast to Jesus' own practice. Four, Jesus' stories were mostly fictional. He fabricated them- and we should do the same. Although the world that modern preachers address is different from Jesus' world, we can learn by giving our attention to the master teacher's example.