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How Do You Use Accordance for Sermon Prep?


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#1 David Lang

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Posted 14 December 2008 - 09:03 PM

I'm curious to hear how the pastors and other ministry professionals on this forum use Accordance to prepare their sermons. Here are a few questions I hope you all can answer for me:

1. What kind of sermon do you typically preach? (Exegetical? Topical? Application-oriented? etc.)

2. What methods do you use to research your passage or topic? How do you use Accordance to accomplish those tasks?

3. Do you write your sermon out, work from an outline, or create some other form of written notes? Do you do this within Accordance (using user tools or user notes) or do you use an external word processor?

4. Do you use any visual aids in the actual preaching of your sermon? If so, do you do this using Accordance or a specialized presentation program?

Thanks in advance for taking the time to share your experiences.
Sincerely,
David Lang
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#2 Fr. Rich

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Posted 14 December 2008 - 10:24 PM

Typically my sermons are exegetical (about 90%).

I use Accordance in the following ways:
I read the passage or passages in multiple English translations. Accordance makes this easy.
Then I compare translations. Usually I compare ESV and NRSV. My Episcopal parish use the NRSV so I need to use that and I find that the ESV's more literal translation helps highlight variations
Then I use the passage in NRSV in parallel with the original language. I use, especially, BDAG, HALOT and TWOT to do any word study.
For New Testament, I use a commentary (NIGTC if there is a volume available). I am so looking forward to having Hermeneia available in Accordance because it includes commentaries on both NT and OT and many in the series are still the best available.
I cut and paste both lexicon and dictionary and commentary materials into user notes.
I may follow up on various issues by searching the Church Fathers or some of the historical commentaries.
Eventually, I create an outline.

Sometimes I preach from the outline but more often, I write out the sermon after doing the work outlined above. Without fail, it is the sermon I preach from an outline that someone wants a copy of so really try to write out the sermon. I do my actual sermon writing in a word processor.

I do not use visual aids in sermons. I am an old guy (63) who thinks that Power Point and such will eventually kill good preaching. However, I do use visual aids in Sunday school and Bible studies. I have used Accordance maps and some of the pictures in the various dictionaries.

I hope this is what you are looking for.

Rich Miller
Retired Priest
Christ the King Episcopal Church
Huntington, Indiana

 

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#3 Lorinda H. M. Hoover

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Posted 14 December 2008 - 10:51 PM

1. What kind of sermon do you typically preach? (Exegetical? Topical? Application-oriented? etc.)


As a general rule, I follow the Revised Common Lectionary, choosing one of the day's assigned texts to preach from. I have at times gone off lectionary for a topical series.

I usually identify one or two major points, concepts, or themes in the passage to discuss in my sermon. There are usually both exegetical and application-oriented elements to my sermon.

2. What methods do you use to research your passage or topic? How do you use Accordance to accomplish those tasks?


I have a Sermon Prep Workspace that includes a tab for each reading (Old Testament, Psalm, Epistle and Gospel), with three panes in each: NRSV, BHS-W4 or GNT-T, and NET, and a tab for a User Tool

I read through the passage, making note of particular words or phrases that catch my interest. I look those up by amplifying to a favorites word space that searches for all occurrences of the Greek or Hebrew word in the relevant texts, and includes dictionary/lexicon tabs.

Sometimes I search for repeated words within the passage, using a saved search. (For Greek, I just keep the syntax saved in a custom pasteboard in Butler. For Hebrew, I have a saved search pane).

Then I work through several resources; Chris Haslam's Study Notes (available on-line), the NET Notes, and the Life Application Bible. If I'm preaching from the assigned Gospel text, I also work through a packet of resources a colleague collects and distributes. While working with these resources, I often discover additional words and phrases I want to explore.

Depending on time, inclination, and resources, I may also consult print commentaries, my print file for the given Sunday, articles in ATLA Serials, and links available at Textweek.com.

If I'm able to get to the "local" text study (some 25 miles away), I take my computer with me and use it both to take notes and look things up as we discuss. If I'm leading the study that week, I print out the lessons (including the Hebrew and Greek) and the NET notes.

I have a User Tool set up for each year of the lectionary, with a standard structure I use for each week. I add notes from all the resources I consult and the research I do on words and phrases in this user Tool.

If I write my own liturgy elements for the week, I try to remember to save those in the User Tool as well.

3. Do you write your sermon out, work from an outline, or create some other form of written notes? Do you do this within Accordance (using user tools or user notes) or do you use an external word processor?


I write out something between a manuscript and an outline. I use an external word processor (NeoOffice)

4. Do you use any visual aids in the actual preaching of your sermon? If so, do you do this using Accordance or a specialized presentation program?


No, the congregation I serve is not set up for this.

Lorinda
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#4 revtim

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Posted 15 December 2008 - 10:15 PM

First off, thanks Dave! Your creativity and hard work are appreciated.

I want to preface these remarks by saying that I am not currently at a church ministering full time. I currently do supply work on occasion. It can sometimes be months between my preaching engagements and when I get them they typically require quick turn around (a week or less).

I will start by spending time in prayer focusing on what God would like me to say to the congregation. I will occasionally consult the lectionary. Once I have a topic in mind, I will then search by keyword to find a text that addresses the issue God has laid on my heart. Once I find a text that "fits" I will read it multiple times in multiple translations (I preach in the ESV, but usually consult the TNIV, Message, NLT, & NAS.) I will look at the Greek and or Hebrew, since my Hebrew is totally gone and my Greek is little more than in a coma the ESVS is incredibly helpful here. (It is a dream of mine to get back into my Greek especially, but who knows when that will happen.)

After I have read the text over and over, I will then bounce my ideas off the commentaries that I have in Accordance or in paper. Sometimes this gives me a totally different take on the text, but more often than not confirms my direction. The commentaries I use are Keil & Delitzsch for OT (why I upgraded to 8.0) and NIBC for NT (another reason I upgraded to 8.0). I will glance through the other commentaries that come with the Premiere Library level as well. Then I peruse my paper commentaries - Word Biblical & Zondervan NIV Application.

Then I get down to writing. I use a word processor - Word & NeoOffice, I have recently downloaded OpenOffice 3.0 and will be trying that. I typically write an expanded outline - illustrations will be written out, some thoughts written out, some thoughts bulletted (more and more things are getting written out for me). My sermons are typically exegetical in nature so there is a lot of scripture references, I will Copy as a Citation - love the feature and it flawlessly pastes into Word & NeoOffice, hopefully OpenOffice as well.

I use my user notes to help in the planning phase - when I get the time, and making notes about the different versions and their word choices. As for visuals, I typically will use a PPT when I can, but it is iffy. Unfortunately, I don't have the Atlas or Timeline (yet another dream)

Edited by revtim, 15 December 2008 - 10:17 PM.

In Christ,

Tim Hall

#5 Chris Regas

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Posted 16 December 2008 - 11:16 AM

I'm curious to hear how the pastors and other ministry professionals on this forum use Accordance to prepare their sermons. Here are a few questions I hope you all can answer for me:

1. What kind of sermon do you typically preach? (Exegetical? Topical? Application-oriented? etc.)

Mostly exegetical but even the topical I do is based on solid exposition.

2. What methods do you use to research your passage or topic? How do you use Accordance to accomplish those tasks?

First and foremost I use Accordance as a concordance on steriods. This enables me to to do quick searches and quickly see 8 bibles versions quickly. It also gets me access to all the marginal notes of these versions and the original languages.

I have a study window that I always use as my workhorse each day. (uploaded screen shot).

I always consult the Expositor's Bible Commentary since it is the only complete commentary set I have on accordance. I also consult DBAG and TDNT on a regular basis on accordance

I love the Theological Journal set since I can quickly search for important articles on various topics.

I cut and paste quotes from what I find.
[/i]


3. Do you write your sermon out, work from an outline, or create some other form of written notes? Do you do this within Accordance (using user tools or user notes) or do you use an external word processor?

Use Microsoft Word.

4. Do you use any visual aids in the actual preaching of your sermon? If so, do you do this using Accordance or a specialized presentation program?

Microsoft PowerPoint when necessary.

Other interesting questions to ask are these from Shane Hipps' book "The Hidden Power of the Electronic Culture":

Here are four questions from Hipps' book that I found helpful when facing technological change:

The Four Laws of Media

1) What does the medium extend?


e.g. camera is an extension of the eye!

2) What does the medium make obsolete?

e.g. cars made horse and buggy obsolete!

3) What does the medium reverse into?

e.g. cars meant to speed up transportation when pushed to the extreme reverse to the opposite intention: traffic jams!

4) What does the medium retrieve?

e.g. e-mail retrieves the past technology of the telegraph

In an age when technological change comes faster than one can comprehend, such questions seem to promote evaluation and reflection on what the technology offers and does not offer. What it values and what it devalues.

We won't agree with Hipps on everything but how many Christians are actually asking whether all that humans can do or use should be done or used? The Tower of Babel perhaps has something to say to us in an age when everything seems within reach.

I love Accordance and use it daily, but I have lost some things in my sermon prep by using the computer based tools. Yet I will not go back, but continue to move forward with the knowledge that McLuhan was right to a degree: the medium is the message!

Thanks in advance for taking the time to share your experiences.

Attached Files


Chris[B][I][FONT=Arial][COLOR=blue]

#6 ToddPeperkorn

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Posted 17 December 2008 - 11:12 AM

I'm curious to hear how the pastors and other ministry professionals on this forum use Accordance to prepare their sermons. Here are a few questions I hope you all can answer for me:


1. What kind of sermon do you typically preach? (Exegetical? Topical? Application-oriented? etc.)

Exegetical. I use the Traditional One-Year Lectionary of the Western Church. This is the lectionary of Rome from Pre-Vatican II, the lectionary of Anglicanism pre-RCL and of American Lutheranism until the ILCW in the 70s .



2. What methods do you use to research your passage or topic? How do you use Accordance to accomplish those tasks?

I have a workspace that I use which is simliar to Lorinda's. OT, Epistle, Gospel & Psalm tabs. Each tab will have columns for the ESVS, NASB95/NKJV, Greek/Hebrew, and the Vulgate. Then I have two other boxes undernear for my own notes and for textual studies. I use the ESV Study Bible, the Catena Aurea, The NKJV Notes & Cross Refs, & the Lightfoot commentaries. When the ACCS is split up to be sold by individual volume, I will buy the Gospel volumes of that in either Accordance or Libronix. I also use the Libronix Passege guide, and check out references to the Book of Concord & Luther. In January Libronix/CPH is releasing their Concordia Commentary Series in Libronix format, which I am very excited about (although not as excited as I would be if it were in Accordance).

3. Do you write your sermon out, work from an outline, or create some other form of written notes? Do you do this within Accordance (using user tools or user notes) or do you use an external word processor?

I write my sermon out in either iWork/Pages or WORD 2008.


4. Do you use any visual aids in the actual preaching of your sermon? If so, do you do this using Accordance or a specialized presentation program?

No. Preaching is oral. When I am teaching I use lots of different visual aids, either with Accordance's slide show view or through Keynote.

Thanks in advance for taking the time to share your experiences.


+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Rev. Todd Peperkorn
Messiah Lutheran Church (LCMS)
Kenosha, WI 53140
http://lutheranlogomaniac.com
http://toddpeperkorn.com/
http://messiahkenosha.org
http://historiclectionary.com
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

#7 basurf

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Posted 17 December 2008 - 02:30 PM

nice screenshot, 24" monitor?

#8 Sean R.

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 11:07 AM

I nearly always preach exegetical, expository sermons (I had a homiletics professor who frequently stated a mantra based on a comment reportedly by Walter Kaiser: Preach one non-expository sermon a year and do penance the rest of the year). The ease of use, power, and flexibility of Accordance have revolutionized my sermon preparation experience.

When a passage is selected, I use Accordance to easily compare several translations (always ESV, NASB, NET, NIV, KJV—often other versions are also thrown into the mix). If I'm feeling particularly adventurous and have enough time, I'll create my own translation of the passage. I rarely parse, preferring to rely on the tagging information displayed in the instant details box. Even if I do not do a complete translation, I still refer frequently to the Hebrew and Greek texts for the study of key words in the passages. Although I have a few Hebrew and Greek grammars in Accordance, I find myself usually referring to my print editions when translating.

As I do not want commentaries to shape my view of the passage, I wait until I feel I have a reasonable grasp of the passage and its message(s) before referring to relevant commentaries for pertinent information (always the NET notes in addition to NIBC, BK, etc. and classic commentaries like Calvin, Clarke, Henry, etc). I'm currently preparing my sermon for this coming Saturday, and I've appreciated the ESV Study Bible's conservative, accessible scholarship.

While perusing the passage and referring to various resources, I keep track of my findings with a User Note attached to the first verse of my selected passage. I hope Accordance will soon be enhanced with the ability to link to other resources from within User Notes. At the end of the User Note, I compile and continually modify a working outline that will eventually be the outline from which I preach.

I generally do not use computer generated visual aids for preaching (I do frequently project my Accordance workspace onto a screen when leading group Bible study).
Sean Reed




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