Keller’s Outline For Gospel-Motivated Sermons

November 6, 2007

The following quote is an excerpt taken from Keller’s Preaching in a Post Modern City pt 3. When I read things like this, it makes me pray that Keller will eventually write a book about preaching the gospel in a post-modern culture.



The following may actually be four points in a presentation, or they may be treated very quickly as the last point of a sermon. But more generally, this is a foundational outline for the basic moral reasoning and argument that lies at the heart of the application.

The Plot winds up: WHAT YOU MUST DO.

“This is what you have to do! Here is what the text/narrative tells us that we must do or what we must be.” The Plot thickens: WHY YOU CAN’T DO IT.

“But you can’t do it! Here are all the reasons that you will never become like this just by trying very hard.” The Plot resolves: HOW HE DID IT.

“But there’s One who did. Perfectly. Wholly. Jesus the—. He has done this for us, in our place.” The Plot winds down: HOW, THROUGH HIM, YOU CAN DO IT.

“Our failure to do it is due to our functional rejection of what he did. Remembering him frees our heart so we can change like this…”



  1. This is Gold! Thanks for posting it.


  2. Colin–Thanks. I like Keller and find this helpful. Glad you posted it.

  3. […] of Redeemer Presbyterian Church. His preaching lectures from Gordon-Conwell are extremely helpful. Here’s how Keller preaches Christ from all of Scripture: The following may actually be four points in a presentation, or they may be treated very quickly as […]

  4. Hey Colin,

    Just wanted to say thank for the link to my blog over on your Workman’s Toolbox. I know I’m not much of a commenter, but I do frequent your blog alot, and find it quite helpful as a resource to me as I develop as a pastor and preacher. Very helpful stuff – thanks!

  5. […] of his on outlines for preaching Redemptive, Gospel/Christ-centered Sermons from the text (click here). Here’s a quote to wet your appetite: “Our failure to do it [Imperative – what to do] is due […]

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