HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Speaking for the Master: A Study of Public Speaking for Christian Men
Author: Batsell Barrett Baxter
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group, republished 1979
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Recommended reading level: Teens and adults
Rating: ***** 5 stars
(5 stars=EXCELLENT; 4 stars=GOOD; 3 stars=FAIR; 2 stars=POOR; 1 star=VERY POOR; no stars=NOT RECOMMENDED)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Baxter, Batsell Barrett. Speaking for the Master: A Study of Public Speaking for Christian Men (published in 1954 by The Macmillan Company; republished in 1962 by Old Paths Book Club). Another book related to “homiletics” (the study of preaching) that had a great influence on me as a beginning preacher was by Speaking for the Master by Batsell Barrett Baxter (1916–1982) who was an influential preacher and writer within the Churches of Christ. The son of Batsell Baxter, another influential leader within the Churches of Christ and head of the Bible department at David Lipscomb College in Nashville, Tennessee, the younger Baxter received his post-secondary education at Abilene Christian College (B.A.), University of Southern California (M.A., Ph.D.), and Vanderbilt University (B.D.), and was appointed Professor of Homiletics and head of the Speech Department at David Lipscomb College in 1945. Later he headed the Bible department at David Lipscomb College after his father died.
Baxter preached in Nashville at the Trinity Lane Church of Christ from 1946 to 1951 and then at the Hillsboro Church of Christ in Nashville for 29 years from 1951 to 1980 when he retired. During much of this time, his sermons were recorded for broadcast on WLAC radio on Sunday nights. Baxter was also a writer for the Gospel Advocate and 20th Century Christian. He wrote eleven books including I Believe Because and Speaking for the Master. Concerning the latter, I do not remember whether I received it from my gospel preacher grandfather’s library or purchased it when I was a student at Florida College. It is especially beneficial for a men’s training class by a local church because in addition to the usual homiletical material on how to prepare and deliver a sermon, it has lessons on making announcements, reading the Scripture, leading in prayer, and giving a beginning talk.