Preaching in the 21st Century

MS 3XP3/5XP5/6XP6

Karl Barth speaks of the Word of God in its “threefold form”: the living Word (Christ), the written Word (Scripture), and “the Word of God Preached” (Church Dogmatics 1.1.4).  Guided by a conviction that the written word shapes the preached word in its testimony to the Living Word, this course introduces the theory and practice of Christian proclamation in a congregational setting, giving particular attention to a post-modern setting.  As a hybrid course, it consists of twelve on-line modules with face-to-face sessions scheduled midway through the semester.


  • To introduce basic hermeneutical issues that apply to the process of moving from biblical and social exegesis to proclamation.
  • To examine and evaluate the component elements of preaching and their respective contributions to effective communication.
  • To explore contemporary contexts for preaching, with particular attention to the impact of postmodern thought.


  • To reflect on spiritual and ministerial identity as they apply to Christian ministry.
  • To help students identify their preferred approach to preaching as an expression of spirituality and discipleship.


  • To evaluate representative forms and models of preaching in relation to students’ own ministries of preaching.
  • To provide students with practice in the composition and delivery of sermons, together with opportunities for peer evaluation.