How to listen to a sermon

Here are five tips, excerpted from The Urban Pastor:

1. Listen expectantly

As long as the words of the preacher are faithful to scripture, then they are exactly what God wants to say to you. We need to prepare ourselves beforehand to expect God to speak to us through the sermon.

2. Listen attentively

It may be that the speaker is hard to follow, or that other things are vying for our attention. However, if we truly believe that God is speaking to us, then we should make the effort to avoid drifting.

3. Listen carefully

We need to be discerning and check what the preacher says against the Bible. Unless we’re actively listening, we shall passively take on everything that is said, true or not.

4. Listen humbly

God’s word may challenge us on wrong acts or attitudes in our lives. Let us be humble enough to accept rebuke and to respond with obedience and faith.

5. Listen responsively

The measure of Christian maturity isn’t knowing a lot, but changing a lot—into the image of Christ.

Read the detailed post by The Urban Pastor, including a sixth tip I couldn’t summarise! Similar points to the above are made at The Blazing Center.

Addendum: Nathan Bingham has 3 tips on getting the most out of a sermon.