CUT and PASTE preaching

I was clicking around on Zondervan’s website and I saw that this book had just been released:

cutandpaste What do you think? Should pastors use other pastor’s sermons?

These guys think its ok.

And these guys.

And maybe even this guy to some extent?

What does it mean to “use someone else’s sermon“?

What’s the difference between using a book (like a commentary or Bible dictionary) and using someone’s sermon for information?

Curious what you think.

Sound off!!!

4 thoughts on “CUT and PASTE preaching”

  1. Ryan,

    i was just having this same conversation with someone else the other day. i often look at it from the lens of historical interpretation or intellectual property. for instance, there are a number of great teachers who have done some incredible work in breaking down a hebrew word, greek word or a certain place in the text. when someone defines a word; i think that is fair game…but how they use it moves into intellectual properties. some teachers might use a prop, tell a story, create a scene or present a new metaphor to understand the word or verse better. when other teachers rip that off without credit, i think that is wrong…

    i’m always fascinated by why teachers do this? is it lack of time? creatively blocked? too little headspace focused on preaching? i remember hearing erwin mcmanus tell a young pastor who wasn’t tithing to go apologize in front of his community for not doing this and ask the elders for more money so he could tithe. i wonder if teachers need to ask the elders for more space so they can create…more space for them to spend with God or in study…and also the space to apologize if they have abused someone elses intellectual properties. just a few thoughts after a junior high all nighter, so please don’t hold me to anything.

    i’m back blogging because of you…

  2. I think that it’s cool to use ideas from people and definitely fine to listen to them for how they define or interpret certain things. I will be preaching on the parable of the Shrewd Manager soon and I know I will listen to a couple people I respect for their take on a few points – like a commentary.

    However, I think it’s wrong to just rip off a sermon or just preach something you bought from Rick Warren or Ed Young. Maybe “wrong” is too strong a word. I think it’s inauthentic.

    I do think these are good resources for people running entire ministries and/or churches as a volunteer or a part-time minister. I think full-timers should be able to pull it off though.

  3. Steve, I like how you differentiate between property and common interpretation. Not giving credit is key to me. It just creates false impressions. When I started out in junior high ministry I had no idea what I was doing, so I bought every single Doug Fields talk available. I think it was Doug that would say, “Why re-create the wheel? It doesn’t make any sense to do all the work of preparing a message from scratch when someone else has done the work already.” And so for my first couple years I copied and pasted- a little less each time, but it was still copy and paste (with an occasional illustration of my own thrown in).

    Eric, I like what you’re saying too. You, me and Steve will have to grab lunch some time when Stevo finally lands over at Rock Harbor.

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