Today we look at the eight chapter: Start with a Bang and Quit All Over.

Outline of the chapter in Haddon Robinson’s book

  • The introduction: an effective introducing commands attention; uncovers needs; introduces the body of the sermon; may exhibit other characteristics
  • The conclusion: a summary; an illustration; a quotation; a question; a prayer; specific directions; visualisation


  • Write draft based on main point. Keeps you on track.
  • Write final version last
  • Why should I listen to you? Yes, you. The topic may be interesting, but they are listening to you, not a ‘paper’.
  • What’s in it for me?
  • Make them lean in
  • Pause – take a breath – don’t rush

A Jesus Introduction
We don’t see Jesus adding an introduction to many of his parables, but that’s not because they did not have an introduction. It is because the context in which they were told was the introduction. They were an immediate response to something said or done by someone nearby. In other words they were already contextualised. The audience already knew why they were listening to his teaching.
“Then some Pharisees and teachers of the law came to Jesus from Jerusalem and asked, “Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? They don’t wash their hands before they eat!” Jesus replied, “And why do you break the command of God for the sake of your tradition?” (Matthew 15:1-3 NIV11)


  • Vary your conclusions
  • Restate your main point in the way that is compelling
  • If your introduction asked a question, make sure you answer it
  • How will this help my congregation on Monday?
  • Land the plane – no going round again
  • Keep it short
  • About them, and God

A Jesus Conclusion
The Parable of the Tenants, Matthew 25:33-44
““Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. Anyone who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.”” (Matthew 21:43-44 NIV11)

Next week the topic is, ‘The Dress of Thought’.

Consider joining AIM UK&Ireland to develop your understanding of Scripture: Our current module is Homiletics (the preparation and delivery of lessons).

Contact us here with enquiries:

The website can be found here:

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community.

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, or practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email:

If you’d like a copy of my free eBook on spiritual disciplines, “How God grows His people”, sign up at my website:

Please pass the link on, subscribe, and leave a review.

Remember to keep calm, and carry on teaching.

God bless, Malcolm