HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Sermon Design and Delivery
Author: Thomas H. Holland
Publisher: Penmann, republished 1995
Related website: https://www.chulavistabooks.com/products/9586-sermon-design-and-delivery/ (book)
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: Older 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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Holland, Thomas H. Sermon Design and Delivery (published in 1967 by Gussie Lambert Publications, P. O. Box 4007, Shreveport, LA 71104). A fourth book, and final one that I’ll mention now, on “homiletics” (the study of preaching) that had a great influence on me as a beginning preacher was Sermon Design and Delivery by Thomas Hayes Holland, who is or was an Instructor in Speech and Bible at Freed-Hardeman College in Henderson, TN. I believe that he also taught at David Lipscomb College/University in Nashville, TN. Apparently, the book was originally published in 1966 by Freed-Hardeman College as a syllabus for Holland’s homiletic classes there. My copy, which I purchased in 1973 while a student at Florida College, was copyrighted in 1967 by Gussie Lambert Publications of Shreveport, LA. Research shows that it was republished in 1974 and again in 1976 by Holland Publications. The latest edition which is available today was published in 1995 by Penmann.
Homiletics is the science of public preaching, and this book is a sweeping overview that attempts briefly and simply to present the basic principles of homiletics. Sermon Design and Delivery zeroes in on the specific and practical details of how to design and deliver a sermon. The author states firmly and unashamedly that preaching should be based on and filled with the Word of God. The book moves from preparation of the speaker to preparation of the sermon. It concentrates on the specific and practical rather than the general and theoretical. Various chapters address how to start and end a sermon, how to write an outline, preaching without notes, the use of visual aids in preaching, earning the right to preach, and more. One reviewer said that the book is “A bit dated but still very relevant.” I still fail to see how a book which helps one to preach the timeless gospel of Christ can be “dated.” The Gospel Advocate website also carries another similar book by Holland entitled Preaching Principles and Practice.