A Method for Discovering and Applying the Specific Gospel in Your Specific Congregation
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Within confessional Lutheran circles, the term “specific law” has a well-understood and widely-recognized meaning in the field of homiletics. In recent decades, the term “specific gospel” has grown in popularity. However, there is evidence that this term means different things to different people. Recent research seems to be leading toward a more crystallized definition. However, once the term has been defined, what is the practical usage of it? How does the preacher apply the idea of preaching “specific gospel” in his week-to-week sermon writing? The example of apostolic preaching in the book of Acts shows that a solid definition of the specific gospel can be achieved. Furthermore, this definition suggests several clarifying questions that can be included in a pastor's text study. By diligently searching out the answers for these questions, the preacher will more quickly and more accurately arrive at the heart of gospel preaching in the text before him and how he can apply it to his specific congregation.