Experiences In ‘Winging It’

January 2, 2010

As one who doesn’t ‘preach on his feet’ (so to speak), I was intrigued to read Craig Brian Larson’s experiences of trying to depart from sermon-manuscripts after 33 years of preaching with them.

Larson talks up the positives: greater freedom for the speaker, more ‘oral’ (and less ‘written’) word choice, and being able to focus on God and the congregation instead of on written notes. On the downside, he mentions the dangers of rambling, and saying something you might later regret.



  1. I find I paraphrase my scripts but make sure that I stick tightly at some points where I’ve really crafted the language. Tends to give a more oral style and engages more with people, but requires more preparation not less to speak more ‘freely’.

  2. I was profoundly impressed with a special lecture I heard recently titled “The Extemporaneous Mode of Preaching” by Dr. Carrick of Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary.

    It’s a powerful address that compares this mode of preaching to other methods such as sermon reading and sermon reciting. Dr Carrick often calls to our attention such noble preachers as Dr Lloyd-Jones, Spurgeon, Broadus, Dabney, and more recent men such as Al Martin, to make his case.

    The lecture is located on Sermon Audio, here:

    Don’t miss the ending especially!

  3. […] Experiences In ‘Winging It’ […]

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