3 Fantastic Questions to Ask During Every Sermon

Make this next message one you truly hear and apply.

This Sunday, it’s going to happen again. You’ll hear one more sermon to add to the thousands you’ve listened to. Be honest, do you remember anything from last Sunday? If you’re like me, you often draw a blank with this question.

3 Fantastic Questions to Ask During Every Sermon

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It’s not because my pastor is boring. Or because his theology is lame. Or because I fail to hear. It’s likely because I approach the sermon the wrong way as a listener.

I have discovered 3 fantastic questions that help my focus when I hear another sermon.

Even Jesus Had Listeners Who Missed His Message

The event of Jesus teaching a large crowd from a boat most likely occurred at a small cove along the northwest shore of the Sea of Galilee. One study revealed that about 14,000 people could fit on a hillside located there and still hear a lone voice from the cove below. Within this natural theater, Jesus taught the people.

In Matthew 12:22-29, when Jesus healed people in Capernaum, the religious leaders attributed His miracles to Satan. Up to that point, Jesus’ message had offered Israel the long-awaited kingdom of God, but now He realized that Israel would reject His offer. So, by speaking parables, Jesus shifted His message from preparing the nation for the Kingdom to preparing the disciples for the Church.

The Critical Element in Listening to God’s Word

“That day,” Matthew notes, Jesus “spoke many things to them in parables” (Matthew 13:1-3). When Jesus’ disciples asked Him why the change, Jesus answered that parables served to reveal truth to those willing to receive it—and to conceal the truth from those unwilling to hear.

apply the message

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Jesus’ parable of the sower who scattered seed on various soils represented the various responses to God’s Word—from the hard heart that ignores the truth to the soft heart that hears and applies it.

3 Questions That Help Us Focus in a Sermon

The story also calls each of us to examine our own personal response to the Bible:

  • Do I hear God’s Word in order for God to change me?
  • Does my heart long to bear fruit for the Lord?
  • Or like the throng along the shore that day, do I just gather with others to hear stories from a gifted teacher?

I have found these 3 questions fantastic for zeroing in my focus when I hear another sermon.

Tell me what you think: What helps you get the most out of listening to a sermon? To leave a comment, just click here.


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This post is adapted from Wayne’s book, Going Places with God: A Devotional Journey Through the Lands of the Bible.

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