Tim Keller and Sermon Outlines

As usual, there are some really great posts and links over at Unashamed Workman regarding the privilege and responsibility of preaching. If you guys haven’t checked out Colin’s blog yet, you really need to. He just put up a post about Tim Keller and some thoughts of his on outlines for preachingtimkeller.jpg 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 to our functional rejection of what he did [Indicative – what is true]. Remembering him frees our heart so we can change like this.”

I have to say that as I read Keller’s outline I found myself being drawn to this approach when developing a sermon outline. To those out there who are willing to entertain this next question I have, does this run counter to what we are being taught here at seminary? (This will probably matter mostly to the guys currently in seminary taking the homiletics classes – but all are welcome to comment). It seems that what Keller would drive at in this outline – and it is a small sampling of his thoughts on preaching as a whole (Amen Collin to the thought about Keller and a book on preaching!) – is that Jesus is the Hero of every story of the Bible – which I am inclined to agree with. But it seems that at seminary we are being told to be cautious and not 1) leapfrog to Jesus (instead see God, not just the second person of the Trinity, as the Hero of the story), and 2) not equate every other “hero” as deficient, and thus showing by negative example our need for another Hero.I have no stated opinion yet, but found myself wrestling with the tension between what I think I’m hearing in class and what I find myself gravitating to regarding preaching (and it’s not just because Tim Keller said it). What do you all think – is there a tension, or am I just missing something?

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