161 religious encyclopedia harmoa Harmony of the Gospels



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8omi18tioe THE NEW SCHAFF HERZOG 348

to be treated by the preacher? A first requisite is that it be a subject which corresponds to the need of the congregation; the assembled congre­gation again is to be considered as a part of the great congregation of God which has been founded upon the redemption of Christ. This work of re­demption is celebrated by an annual cycle of festivals which forms the basis of the so called Church Year (q.v.; and see CALENDAR, THE CHRISTIAN). On such festivals the facts underlying them should form the subject of the sermon. Under certain circumstances there may arise in congregations special needs, independently of the course of the church year, coming with such a force that the ser­mon must be adapted to them (see §§ 9 10). But what should be preached during the long intervals of Sundays on which there are no festivals and no special occasions arising from special needs? The general custom is to take a Biblical text as .basis. While the absolute necessity for a text can not be asserted, such a method has the advantage that it gives the preacher a definite course which is advantageous to the congregation from the very fact that the texts are taken from Scripture and must be treated according to the congregation's need. This method is justified also by the history of preaching and by the fact that congregations are accustomed to it. It would be well if the texts were prescribed by some central authority, because then they would be expounded to a larger number of congregations a fact of great advantage for eccle­siastical instruction. A well chosen system of peri­copes aids greatly in a survey of the essential truths of the Bible in a comparatively short period. In former times in lieu of texts sermons were based on the catechism and on hymns, these being re­garded as paraphrases or presentations of Scripture or its doctrines. The text must really be utilized and not be cited after the manner of a maxim. The indis­pensable basis for the proper treatment of the text is a comprehensive study of Scripture, and the text should be thoroughly studied in the original language. At the same time the Bible as used in the church must not be discredited before the congregation.

A distinction between the analytical and synthet­ical sermon was made by Jacob Andrea (q.v.). By analysis he understood the discussion 6. Varieties of the parts of the text, and by syn­of Sermons. thesis he understood the union of the individual parts into a whole. The analytical and synthetical activity of the preacher is exercised in his preparation of the sermon, and the audience receives in the sermon the results of this twofold activity. Andrea does not recognize two species of sermons, but every sermon, according to him, contains analytical and synthetical con­stituents. It was only in the later development that two kinds of sermons were recognized, which, however, were still capable of being combined. Thus Mosheim asserts (ut sup., p. 265): We have three kinds of sermons: (1) Analytical sermons, in which the text is traversed and explained word by word and sentence by sentence; (2) synthetical sermons, in which one doctrine of faith or of life is drawn from the text and then elaborated; (3) mixed ser­mons, in which first the text is explained and then



special truths elicited from the text are worked out. The name " homily " for the sermons that follow the text step by step seems to have arisen in the first half of the eighteenth century.

In considering the structure of the sermon, hom­iletics can dispense with the assistance of rhetoric.

As theological conceptions concerning q. The the Church and congregation, the life Structure of communion and Holy Scripture

of the are sufficient as a general basis for Sermon. homiletics, the same is true also in

regard to all questions that arise with relation to the individual sermon. The structure of the individual sermon may be explained from the sermon itself. The preacher must prepare the congregation for what he intends to deliver, and must awaken its interest. He is further naturally intent upon keeping awake this interest until the close of the church service and beyond it. From these points of view results what homiletics has to say on the introduction, on its necessity and proper quality, as well as on the different ways of conclu­ding the sermon. The preacher will, furthermore, arrange what he has to say according to his purpose (dispositio). In order that the congregation may better follow, it must in time be informed of the course of the sermon (propositio). Homiletics may treat also the linguistic side of the sermon. The preacher must before everything take pains to use expressions intelligible to his congregation; he must take care not to transfer his hearers into the sphere of worldly things by his manner of expression; he must use his own words and not imitate the language of the Bible.

The last duty of homiletics is to treat of the prep­aration of the sermon and of its delivery. Here,

too, homiletics needs no assistance 8. Prepara  from other branches of science. The

tion and necessity of preparation is justified

Delivery. from the circumstance that the sermon

is a regularly recurring act of worship and therefore, like every other act of worship, needs forethought. Moreover, since the sermon is destined to serve the life of the congregation, it follows that sermon preparation is not an episode in the life of the preacher to be postponed till Saturday, but extends over the preacher's whole life. In the matter of delivery, whether the preacher shall or shall not use manuscript, homiletics can not pro­nounce unconditionally; the oldest Christian sermon transmitted was read (Clement ii. 19). But it should be remembered that speaking without manu­script corresponds more closely to the nature of the sermon, and that it is no mere whim of congrega­tions which requires this method of their preachers. See PREACHING, HISTORY OF; HOMILARIUM.

(W. CASPARL)

An occasional address is one that has reference to an event which has importance for the spiritual

life of an individual Christian or of a g. The Christian community, such as baptism, Occasional the celebration of marriage, a funeral,

Address. and the like. It is distinguished from

the sermon only by the form and place of delivery. While the sermon on Sundays and holy days deals with needs common to members of the




349 RELIGIOUS ENCYCLOPEDIA Homiletics

congregation, the purpose of the occasional address is to use any given occurrence in the life of the in­dividual or of the congregation for the upbuilding of faith of those who take part in the ceremony. The liturgical act of the Church which is occasioned by a special case is purely objective; the species of address under consideration, however, regards primarily the individual or individuals, justly pre­supposing that the effect of the case and of the Word in connection with it is dependent upon the quality of the persons primarily concerned. Truthfulness and appositeness with reference to the special oo­currence which has occasioned the address are the most fundamental demands. The preacher must therefore have closely observed the life of the mem­bers of his congregation and must be in sympathy with their joys and sufferings. He must not exag­gerate praise or blame, being guided by the demand for truthfulness. He can not speak at the grave of a man who has kept aloof from the church as he may of a faithful and living member. The purpose of this form of address is to win hearts for Christ; if an address at the baptism of a child in a worldiy­minded family, for instance, expresses merely joy over the birth of a son and does not exhort the parents to bring up their child in the fear of the Lord, that address has not been used for the up­building of faith. Such an address will produce spiritual gain only if it is based on the Word. It need not necessarily be based upon a special text of the Bible, but its whole substance must be per­vaded by the spirit of the Word. Its form is that of the sermon, but although it centers around a uniform thought, it has no theme and divisions like a sermon.

The occasional address is found also in the New

Testament. The words of Jesus when sending

forth the twelve disciples (Matt. x.)

io. History and the seventy disciples (Luke x.) are

of the in a certain sense addresses of installa­Occasional tion. The model of a valedictory ser 

Address. mon is found in the address of Paul to

the elders at Ephesus (Acts xx. 18

sqq.). Examples of addresses on special occasions

are preserved by Eusebius, Basil, Gregory of Nyasa,

Augustine, and other Fathers. A collection of such

addresses from the fourth and fifth centuries has

been translated from Greek and Latin by J. C. W.

Augusti (Predigten auf alle SontN and Festtage des



Kirchenjahres, 2 vols., Leipsic, 1838 39). In the

Middle Ages the development of the liturgical form

put free speech into the background. The Reforma­

tion, however, by emphasizing the right of the in­

dividual, engendered a revival of the occasional

address. In spite of all decided emphasis upon the

objective value of ecclesiastical acts, it made. their

effect dependent upon the disposition of the receiv­

ing subject. The address usually precedes the

ecclesiastical ceremony because its purpose is to

prepare the persons concerned for the reception of

the blessing which the ceremony confers. On

account of this connection with ceremonial, the

principal thoughts of the occasional address must

center in the essence, effect, and ensuing obligation

of those acts. There are addresses on such occasions

as baptism, confirmation, confession, marriage,

funerals, ordination, installation, consecration of churches, cemeteries, holy vessels, organs, bells, and the like. There are also to be mentioned ser­mons on non ecclesiastical events, such as floods, storms, conflagrations, as well as for special eccle­siastical or general religious occasions.

(J. L. SOMMER.)

The history and development of homiletical

teaching in the British Islands and the United

States have necessarily been guided and formed by

the religious, educational, and social character of

the peoples and institutions of those

x r. Homi  countries. Formal teaching of homi­letics in letics seems not to have had so large

Great Brit  a place in the education of the minis­ain and try in England and Scotland as in the

America. United States; and the output of hom­

iletical literature is correspondingly

larger in America. The seventeenth century is the

starting point for a survey of Anglo American

homiletics. The great English preaching of that

epoch both Anglican and Puritan profoundly

and permanently influenced all, that has followed

it; and this in respect both to practise and theory.

As early as 1613 there appeared a treatise by Will­

iam Perkins, originally written in Latin but trans­

lated by Thorpas Tuke under the title The Arte of



Prophecying. It contains eleven chapters and dis­

cusses such topics as The Word of God, Interpre­

tation and Expounding, Applying Doctrines, Mem­

orie in Preaching, Promulgation (i.e., Delivery).

Several other works of less importance followed

this, and in 1667 appeared one from Bishop John

Wilkins of Chester, who thus expresses the essence

of his teaching: " The principal scope of a divine

orator should be to teach clearly, convince strongly,

persuade powerfully. Suitable to the chief parts

of a sermon are these three: Explication, Confirma­

tion, Application." These subjects are enlarged

upon and unfolded in a dry scholastic manner.

These and some other works are noticed by Kidder,

but none seem to be of great importance. In the

eighteenth century a few English and Scotch au­

thors wrote on the art of preaching. Chief among

these treatises are those of Philip Doddridge (1751),

George Campbell (Lectures on pulpit Eloquence,

1775), and the once well known Rhetoric of Hugh

Blair, who devotes several chapters of his work to

the eloquence of the pulpit. In the nineteenth

century the literature greatly increased in amount

and value; but interest in the subject, while con­

siderable, does not seem to have kept pace in Eng­

land with that displayed in Germany and the United

States. In America the first treatise on the theory

of preaching was that of the famous Doctor Cotton

Mather, which appeared under the title Manuductio

in Ministertum (Boston, 1726). Pedantic and

quaint, it is characteristic of author and age, but

has no other than historic value. The effective

beginning of homiletical teaching in the United

States dates from the founding of Andover Theo­

logical Seminary in 1807. There was established

a chair of " Sacred Rhetoric," to which was called,

in 1812, Ebenezer Porter. He taught the subject

with earnestness and success, writing several minor

works and finally publishing his Lectures on Homi 



Homnileee ca THE NEW SCHAFF HERZOG 850

letics and Preaching (New York, 1834). This pioneer work has been followed by a long and bril­liant line of continuance. Distinguished profes­sors and preachers have produced a literature great in sum, for the most part excellent in quality, and devoted to every phase of the work of preaching. The Yale Lectureship on Preaching, .founded in 1871, has added some notable works to homiletical literature. Homiletics has long been an established discipline in the curricula of theological schools of all the leading denominations of Christians in the United States.

As to the word " homiletics " the etymology,

while interesting, does not throw much light upon

the present usage. After the analogy of other

scientific nomenclature the term has obtained rec­

ognition, though by no means exclu 



r2. Defini  sive use, as describing the body of

tion sad knowledge and principles pertaining



Treatment. to the composition and delivery of sermons. Most of the treatises on the subject appear under other and various titles, though the largest number under any one title em­ploy the term " homiletics." One of the beat known American books on the subject bears the title A Treatise on the Preparation and Delivery of Sermons (by J. A. Broadus, Philadelphia, 1870, 25th ed., by E. C. Dargan, New York, 1905), and another is The Theory of Preaching (by A. Phelps, New York, 1881). These may be accepted as defi­nitions of homiletics; to which may be added the elaborate statement of Dr. W. M. Taylor in his article in the first edition of this work: " It is the science which treats of the analysis, classification, preparation, composition, and delivery of sermons, viewed as addressed to the popular mind on sub­jects suggested by the word of God, and designed for the conversion of sinners and the edification of believers (ii. 1014). " And this may be taken as a representative statement of the Anglo American view of homiletics. Preaching is primarily a dis­tinctive institution of Christianity, and secondar­ily a kind of public speaking. This order of thought determines the relation of homiletics to general rhetoric and should make discussion unnecessary. Any wise and earnest study of the beat methods of presenting the truths of the gospel to the people in such manner as to win acceptance for them, must take account of what history, experience, and cul­ture bring forward as the tested principles of sue­cessful public speaking. Homiletics, therefore, may rightly be regarded as the application of rhet­oric to preaching. But the origin, history, concom­itants, materials, and aims of preaching are so dif­ferent from those of other kinds of public speaking as to require distinctive treatment. Treatises and courses of homiletical instruction differ in many details, but the essentials are not far to seek. The four leading topics of homiletics are: Material, Arrangement, Style, Delivery, or, in the old Latin terminology: Inventio, Diapoaitib, Elocutio, Pro. nunciatio. Under " Materials " first place belongs to Scripture, and the selection, interpretation, ex­position, and enforcement of Bible texts is to be considered. Other materials of dbecourse, such as narrative, description, argument, illustration, and

application have their place. In " Arrangement " or " Division," custom and proprieties call for some peculiarities of sermon analysis; but in general the usual counsels of rhetoric are here applicable. For " Style " or " Diction," homiletics urges the im­portance of the grammatical qualities of correct­ness and propriety, and of the rhetorical qualities of clearness and force, with such attention to beauty or ornament as may serve the higher ends of preach­ing. In " Delivery " homiletics considers three methods: reading from manuscript, recitation from memory of a previously written discourse, speak­ing freely after various sorts or degrees of pre­vious preparation. Anglo American homiletics takes little account of recitation; a few homileticians practise and defend reading from manuscript; but the consensus of opinion and practise decidedly favors the so called extemporaneous method, while insisting upon thorough preparation. Elocution, or the training and practise of voice and gesture, is sometimes taught under homiletics and sometimes made a special discipline. Together with these technical aspects of homiletics there are a number of closely related and highly important subjects which claim incidental or special treatment accord­ing to, circumstances, such as the character of the preacher, his view of his work, his relation to his age and people, his habits and methods of study, and many other matters which directly and power­fully influence his preaching. E. C. DARQAN.

LITERATURE. An exhaustive list is not at­tempted; only those books which are considered most important or representative are mentioned. Works dealing with related subjects, such as Pas­toral Theology and the History of Preaching, are omitted.



BIBLIOa6AB87: In spite of what is said in the teat, such works on rhetoric se J. Genung, Outlines of Rhetoric, Bos­ton, 1893, and A. S. Hill, Principles of Rhetoric, New York 1895 may not be neglected in laying a foundation for the work of preaching. Of historical importance are: W. Perkins, The Arts of Prophayinp, 1813; J. Wilkins, Ecclesiastes, or a Discourse concerning as Gift of Preach­ing, London, 1649; J. Glanvil, Essay concerning Preach­ing, ib: 1678; T. Blackwell, Methodus Evanyelica, ib. 1712; Sir Richard Blackmore, The Accomplished Preacher, ed. J. White, 1731; P. Doddridge, Lectures on Preaching and the Ministerial Office, London, 1751; G. Campbell, Lectures on Pulpit Eloquence, ib. 1775; E. Porter, Lec­tures on Homiletics and Preaching, New York, 1834. Among the many handbooks and treatises the following may be reckoned important: T. H. Skinner, Aide to Preaching and Hearing, New York 1839; J. W. Alexan­der, Thoughts on Preaching, 1861; D. P. Kidder, Treatise on Homiletics ib., 1864; T. J. Potter, Sacred Eloquence, London, 1866; idem The Spoken Word, ib. 1872; W. G. T. Shedd, Homiletics and Pastoral Thlogy, New York, 1867; R. L. Dabney, Sacred Rhetoric, Richmond, 1886; J. Parker, Ad Clerum, London, 1870; G. W. Hervey, Christian Rhetoric, New York, 1873; C. H. Spurgeon, Lectures to my Students, 3 series, London, 1875 94; R. S. Storrs, Conditions of Success in Preaching without Notes, New York, 1875; A. Vinet, Homilitiqae, Paris, 1874, Eng. tranel., Homiletics, New York, 1880 (long a standard); M. Simpson, Lectures on Preaching, ib 1879; H W. Beecher Yale Lectures on Preaching, ib. 1881; H. Burgess, Tke Art of Preaching, London, 1881; R. W. Dale, Lectures on Preaching, ib. 1882; A. Phelps, Theory of Preaching, ib. 1882; idem Men and Books, ib. 1882; idem, English Style in Pulpit Discourse, ib. 1883 (Professor Phelps was reckoned one of the great masters in homiletics); J. M. Hoppun. Homiletics, ib. 1883; A. Kraus, Lelubueh den Homiletik, Goths, 1883; N. J. Burton, Leeturse on Preach. inp, New York, 1884; F. W. Fiske, A Manual of Preach 



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