The preacher may have the ability to sermonize putting the thoughts down neatly on paper; yet the preacher may not be able to forcefully and powerfully deliver them to the listener's heart. The whole humankind must preach under the anointing of the Holy Spirit for the sermon to live. When a sermon really lives, the listening audience will crave for more of the same. The answer to many of the problems concerning empty church buildings could be conquered in the pulpit, even before the preacher enters it to preach. For this to happen, the preacher must take preaching seriously. In this paper, we would be discussing on the values, if any, of preaching the difficult passages of the Old Testament to a Congregation. We would be discussing on the Hermeneutics and Homiletics of preaching along with Old Testament Exegesis in the preaching of the Old Testament.
Young preachers are often told, 'You must preach Christ from the Old Testament.' But for example, having just finished preaching on Psalm 121, and realizing that we have said little or nothing about Jesus, we may be in great agitation, and search desperately for a magic formula which will help us to preach Christ from the Old Testament. ...
passage shows why Jesus is needed; or (3) the passage speaks about something that reminds us of Jesus; or (4) the passage speaks about something that could not be accomplished without Jesus; or (5) the passage shows us an individual/group unlike Jesus. The point here is not to comment on whether these five ways are helpful or not so much as the inherent danger in the approach. It is likely to produce preaching that is wooden and insensitive to the rich contours of biblical theology. Its artificiality would lie in our going through the motions of exegeting and expounding the Old Testament and then, remembering the formula, tidying our notes in order to align them with it. The net result over an extended period of time might be akin to that produced by children's sermons in which the intelligent child soon recognizes that the answer to the minister's questions will always be one of: 1. God; 2. Jesus; 3. Sin; 4. Bible; 5. Be Good. Of course we need to work with general principles as we develop as preachers; but it is a far greater desideratum that we develop an instinctive mindset and, corresponding to that, such a passion for Jesus Christ himself, that we will find our way to him in a natural and realistic way rather than a merely formulaic way. This is a much bigger issue than how we preach Christ from the Old Testament, for at least two reasons.
First, because many sermons from the Gospels - where the focus is explicitly on the person of Jesus - never mind from the Old Testament is far from Christ-centred. How is this possible The preacher has looked into the text principally to find himself and his congregation, not to find Christ. The sermon is consequently about 'people in the Gospels' rather than about Jesus Christ who is the gospel. The real question the