Episode #014: What I Pray When I Preach [PODCAST]

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    This is episode #014 of The On Preaching Podcast, the podcast dedicated to helping you preach faithfully, clearly, and better.

    In this episode, I talk about why I pray before I preach and what I preach when I preach.

    When I start my sermons, I typically begin with a public prayer. No one told me to do this or taught me that I should do it. In fact, many of the preachers I look up to do not publicly prepare to begin their messages. But I pray before I preach for two reasons:

    • To personally and publicly declare I need God’s help to speak faithfully.
    • To pastorally and publicly declare the congregation needs God’s help to hear clearly.

     “Help me to your word with faithfulness, clarity, authority, passion, wisdom, humility, and liberty…” 

    These are seven things I want and need the Lord to do in and through and for me as I preach the word: 

    1. Faithfulness
    2. Clarity
    3. Authority
    4. Passion
    5. Wisdom
    6. Humility
    7. Liberty


    What do you pray before you preach? Do you pray publicly when you stand to preach? How do you view the relationship between preaching and praying?

    [Tweet “A prepared heart is much better than a prepared sermon. A prepared heart will make a prepared sermon. – E.M. Bounds”]

    Recommended Resources

    * Preacher and Prayer by Edward M. Bounds 

    * Preaching: How to Preach Biblically by John MacArthur Jr. & The Master’s Seminary Faculty 

    * On Preaching by H.B. Charles Jr.



    If you have an idea for a podcast episode, question to ask, or any feedback from what you have heard or read, leave a message in the comments section. Or send a message by clicking the SEND VOICEMAIL tab to the right of this page.

    A sermon steeped in prayer on the study floor, like Gideon’s fleece saturated with dew, will not lose its moisture between that and the pulpit. The first step towards doing anything in the pulpit as a thorough workman must be to kiss the feet of the Crucified, as a worshiper, in the study. – Thomas Armitage 

    H.B. Charles Jr.

    Pastor-Teacher at the Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church of Jacksonville and Orange Park, Florida.