About Getting Started
WHAT IS GETTING STARTED?
Getting Started is like Charles Simeon’s Horae Homileticae — but for a YouTube world. Simeon’s goal was to help the ‘younger brethren’ of his day get at their Word work. One way he did it was by producing the Horae Homileticae, a set of sermon skeletons for every book of the Bible. He did not want to do their work for them. Rather, he just wanted to help them get started. Our goal is to produce a similar set of resources that will help you — the preachers and teachers of God’s Word in our day.
In both the dedication and the preface to this work, Simeon begins by lamenting the lack of preparedness of the young clergy and unfolding the dangers—both to their morale and to the health of the church—that ensues. In the dedication, he remarks:
To remedy this defect, as far as was in my power, I have endeavoured to unfold the most important part of Holy Writ, such references to Scripture, as should leave no reasonable doubt of its accordance with ‘the mind of the Spirit’ of God. In every one of the Discourses also I have so clearly marked the method, that the entire scope of the passage may be seen with the glance of an eye; and the young Minister may be able to prosecute his work with ease according to his own judgment, making no other use of what is contained within the brackets, than to enlarge or confirm his own views of the subject. (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1956, iii-iv)
Simeon’s goal was wonderfully simple. He wanted to assist the ‘younger minister’ in the task of preaching. And the two values that held him as he went about this task were equally simple. He would 1) maintain rigorous adherence to the Scriptures and say nothing more than it says, and he would 2) provide, as simply as possible, a starting point so that the minister may ‘prosecute his work.’
This is our vision and these are our values: to provide a resource to preachers—young and old—with the purpose of helping you to “get started” with the important work of preaching through a book by means a of faithful exposition. And unlike many other great websites, we are not pursuing comprehensiveness, nor breadth, nor variety. Our goal is to help you get started, not do his work for you. To put it differently, our intention is not to provide sermons that you can preach, but to help prepare you to preach your own sermons.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The website will be organized by books of the Bible. It is our assumption that preachers will be planning to teach a whole book of the Bible or, at the very least, want to have a sense of the whole book when they are teaching from it. That is, we are assuming that you will be working from an “expository” approach to preaching and teaching, where the point of the passage is the point of the sermon and so continuous preaching through a book makes the most sense. This is not the place to defend this approach (though, we think it is the best…). Rather, this is merely an explanation for why we have organized the website by books of the Bible. And for each book, we have three sections:
Here you will find a short video from one of our preachers, sitting in his study, introducing 1) the context of the book, 2) the structure, 3) some important issues or themes or challenges unique to the book, and 4) a few thoughts on how the book connects to the gospel. These are the categories and the big ideas you will want to engage.
Here you will find a few suggested resources: 1) commentaries on the particular book, 2) books or articles on subjects addressed by the book, and 3) other recommended media (sermon series, etc.) related to the book. This will be a short list—no more than five titles—and, more importantly, a highly selective list. Our goal is not to tell you about all the good commentaries you might read, but rather to suggest a handful of resources that the preacher has found especially helpful.
Here you will find a few different kinds of resources to help you get started. This section might include a sample schedule with suggestions for where to break the text for preaching units, a list of key words and definitions, and other similar resources. Basically, it is our way of handing over some raw data to get you working on your text and, hopefully, save you a little time.
Production on this project goes all the way back to 2010 when the idea for the project was first set in motion. So, some of the filming goes back that far. Preachers may have changed locations since then. Production quality has increased since then. But even while the project lay dormant for some time, we are thrilled to be back in production as of 2019. And we pray that it is helpful to you and the whole Church!