Summary: Preaching a sermon using several mottos

Lesson Goal

Learn how to preach a sermon that builds on several mottos.

Lesson Intro

In the previous sermon model we tied several points together by the continual repeating of a refrain, a phrase or motto. In this sermon, we do something similar except that the refrain evolves, builds, or otherwise modifies with each point.

Lesson Plan

We are going to continue our discussion on researching several pericopes in different contexts, but this time our theme grows, develops or builds towards a conclusion or climax, or we explore different aspects of a theme found in different biblical contexts. This is put together in a series of statements that move through our theme. We will also see how such a series of statements can be found in one pericope.

Lesson Body

Using Several Pericopes

Take the theme of salvation. One pericope such as Ephesians 2:1-10 may speak of God choosing us for salvation. A second pericope such as Ephesians 3:14-21 may speak of salvation being like a process of being made holy by God. A third pericope such as Romans 8:28-39 may describe salvation as being united with Christ. This could be brought together through a series of statements about salvation: 1) God chose us for salvation, 2) God builds holiness into us for salvation, and 3) salvation unites us with Christ now and forever.

This introduces a new 5th point to go along with the four on comparing pericopes which we discussed in the previous lesson.

Look at the surrounding text for context and larger themes,

Look at things which are the same in each pericope,

Look at things which are different in each pericope,

Look at how each pericope relates to the overall themes of the Bible, the cross, salvation, eternity, grace, love, etc.

Look for statements of progressive revelation, or statements of a common Bible theme.

Using one Pericope

This sermon does not have to use several pericopes. There are plenty of examples where one pericope could contain a series of statements suitable for a sermon. In fact, it is often safer to stick with one pericope as we have already discussed.

The Series of Statements

A simple way to organize a sermon with either three pericopes A, B and C with a series of statements K, L, and M about theme X, or one pericope with a series of statements K, L, and M about theme X, is as follows:

1. 3 Pericopes, 3 Statements

Goal: Teach K, L, & M about X

Intro: What about K, L, and M in relation to X?

Plan: Pericopes A, B, C


a. Pericope A + Statement K about X

b. Pericope B + Statement L about X

c. Pericope C + Statement M about X

Outro: K, L and M are all true about X

2. 1 Pericope, 3 Statements

Goal: Teach K, L, & M about X

Intro: What about K, L, and M in relation to X?

Plan: Pericope sub points 1, 2, 3


a. Statement K about X

b. Statement L about X

c. Statement M about X

Outro: K, L and M are all true about X

In the introduction you may give a teaser for X which arouses curiosity and interest, and include references to K, L and M. In the conclusion, you may give a final summary showing how K, L and M all relate to X and a summary statement. This is like the refrain except that the statement is slightly different in each case. It is your choice, as you are led by God, how you construct your series-of-statements sermon.

You may vary the outline in many ways. One approach would be if say, statements K and M were true, but statement L was not. Your goal then might be to teach why that is the case and your sermon would confirm K and M, but debunk L. Another variation could be that K, L and M build upon each other. In such circumstances K could be partially M, and L could be more fully M, and M could be the full statement.

Example Sermon

Title: "Bigotry"


Discover where God's people really are.


There are two great things which hurt the church today. One is heresy. The other is denominational bigotry. Most doctrines that separate Christians are twigs. We tend to agree on the trunk of the tree matters of such as the teachings of Jesus and the essentials of salvation. The troublesome issues are either of lesser importance, irrelevant or merely the badly informed opinions of faulty human beings.

Most mainstream churches teach a correct understanding on the essential doctrines. When we look at other churches, how do we see them—for their obvious faults or to what the Holy Spirit is doing among them?


Let's look at Acts 11 and see how God looks upon other believers.

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