Lessons for the Journey

I started writing this from an airport in Panama City, Panama. I was not supposed to be there, at least that was not the original plan.

I was traveling from Memphis, Tennessee to Quito, Ecuador for a preaching Institute.

Due to bad weather in the Memphis area, I flew out of Memphis to Miami a day earlier than originally planned - early on a Saturday morning.

There was no problem with or on the flight to Miami. The plan was to connect in Miami with a flight to Quito, Ecuador.  

The flight from Miami to Quito started out well, but the plane was forced (by protocol) to land and stop in Panama City.

Evidently, there was some type of internal crack in the windshield of the cockpit. Paraphrasing, the pilot said that this was a minor issue, there was no real danger, but due to regulations, the plane was required to stop at the nearest available place: Panama City.

So, we landed at the Panama City airport. ...

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Avoiding Plagiarism in Preaching

dr. david olford Jan 12, 2022

What a privilege it is to be servants of the living God! How wonderful to be available for the service of the Lord!

Yes, ministry has its challenges, hardships, and problems but God is sufficient to see us through the various struggles we face.

Today, I want to address a matter that should not be a problem or a struggle, but it can be.

A friend of mine, who I hold in high esteem, recommended that I address the subject of plagiarism, especially in the preaching ministry.

These comments are by no means a thorough discussion of the subject, and therefore I write with some hesitation. But, I want to express a few thoughts that may be helpful.

I share these thoughts because we are a ministry that seeks to assist preachers and teachers of the Word of God, and we provide resources to help preachers fulfill their ministries.

Preachers, of course, are called to preach the Word of God and to do so...

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Sermon outlines by Dr. Stephen Olford

As mentioned in my Wednesday eBroadcast,  here are this week's sermon outlines by Dr. Stephen Olford.




If an outline is to be used in full, then it would be appropriate and honest to “give credit” and to say in the simplest of ways that you are using or following Dr. Olford’s outline. For more permissions of use and our thoughts on pastoral plagiarism see "Avoiding Plagiarism in Preaching".

These sermon outlines (and the previously shared sermon outlines) may also be downloaded in PDF format by subscribers to the free Stephen Olford Collection on this website. 

The full expanded set of sermon outlines is available for purchase from the Dr. Stephen Olford Ministry Online Collection.

This unique set of sermonic material is designed to assist in the development of expository messages. Written by Dr. Stephen Olford, these 364 expanded sermon outlines are presented in 7 volumes (28...

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The Gospel is to be preached in 2022 as always!

Preaching or teaching evangelistically from the Scriptures is very important. It is certainly possible and recommended to preaching or teach expository evangelistic messages.

Let’s consider a specific text: Acts 16:25-34.

Now the whole chapter, Acts 16, is relevant and should be studied, but the core of the message can be developed from verses 25-34. It is helpful to find a text that is easy to follow.

This is the account of the conversion of a Philippian jailor and his household. It is part of the report of the Apostle Paul and Silas’ missionary ministry, and specifically ministry in Philippi. It is important to note that due to previous ministry in Philippi (recorded in the chapter) that Paul and Silas were beaten, thrown in prison, and a “jailor” was ordered to keep them safely. Details are given about how they were put in an “inner prison” and their feet...

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O Worship the King

In this busy and bustling season with special events, and lots of things to do, let’s take time not just to attend events, but to worship. Bend the knee. Humble ourselves. Give Him our lives as well as our gifts.


Read: Matthew 2:1-23


The whole of Matthew’s gospel presents the majestic and authoritative messiahship of Jesus. The first two chapters are inseparably related to the rest of the gospel. I remind you that this gospel ends with our Risen Lord Jesus Christ declaring that all authority has been given to him. And on the basis of that authority, His disciples are commanded to go and to make disciples now of all nations. So, the one declared “king of the Jews” in our text by the wise men is now Himself proclaiming to have universal authority. He is worthy of the faith, the obedience, the allegiance, indeed the worship of all peoples throughout the world. This is in keeping with the whole “drama of redemption” and the fulfillment...

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Upcoming Institutes

institutes in memphis Dec 03, 2021

Important Information about the Institute for Biblical Preaching Program - 2022


For a number of years, we have been offering a special intense International Institute of Biblical Preaching.

We are planning for this training time to take place September 8-27, 2022. This will mean people will arrive on September 7 and depart September 28, and there is a full program planned basically for every day.

We have a thorough application process for this event, and people need to email the following email address to get further information:

[email protected]


In our Institute program/brochure, dates in February are given for this International Institute.

We have had to switch these dates for various reasons. So, the International Institute will not be offered in February.


Having said that, we will be offering our regular variety of Institutes:

February 8-11   —  “Essentials of Expository Preaching and Teaching

February 22-25...

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Come and Worship

Read: Matthew 1:1-2:17

In reading a book by Darrow L. Miller, Emancipating the World, I was challenged by an idea that he shared. He stated that culture is based on or begins with what we worship. Indeed, there is a sense in which people are wired to worship something.

One technical word for religious beliefs and practices is the word “cult.” We often use the word to refer to religious groups that are considered promoting error, but the word has a more general meaning. The cult is our way of worship. A person or group’s cult or worship will be at the heart of their culture or lifestyle.

With this in mind, we as believers in Jesus Christ have to be aware of any other focus of worship other than our God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We need to be aware of anything that would hinder our relationship with the Lord and invite us into a modern-day idolatrous cult. We know there are various false religions and cults in our world, but generally, in our culture, the...

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Only One Life


This past Monday I was asked to speak at a memorial service for a dear Christian man who died quite abruptly due to illness. Recently this brother in Christ lived in another State, but previously he was a committed volunteer in the children’s ministry of my home church here in the Memphis area (Collierville).

I was asked to share some Biblical texts affirming our Christian hope, which I did gladly.

Comfort comes to us in the midst of grief knowing our certain and living hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. The future of the believer (after death) is a glorious one due to the resurrection of our Lord, and the promised inheritance that is ours in Him. The New Testament Scriptures give the comforting assurance that those who died in Christ are with Him at death and will not be left out when Christ returns. Praise the Lord!  

I was asked also to share thoughts on another Biblical text. So, alongside of words of comfort found in the Scriptures, there was also a word of challenge...

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Would this 7 year preaching planner help you?

Greetings friend,

The sermon outlines by Dr. Stephen Olford (published bi-weekly on this blog) illustrate the depth and the breadth of Scripture. The outlines do this because they are on different texts and a variety of truths.

This leads me to share a planning tool with you.

A number of years ago I put together a simple form, a preaching plan. The form was made to make a point and a suggestion concerning the selection of texts for sermon preparation.

Let me explain it. 

The form lists every book of the Bible. Then there are seven columns (side-by-side), one column for each year for seven years. Then, the years are filled in, each year having 78 messages.  Over a seven-year period, preaching or teaching twice a week for thirty-nine weeks in the year, I suggest various amounts of sermons from every book in the Bible.

So, over a seven-year period, at least one sermon/lesson is presented from each of the 66 books of the Bible. One message is the least amount per book...

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Full restoration and loud rejoicing are the Lord’s plan for his faithful people

Read Zephaniah 3:9-20


"What are we waiting for?” can be asked or exclaimed for any number of reasons.

The joyful closing section of Zephaniah reveals what God’s people in Zephaniah’s day were in fact waiting for. And what a glorious future is described, which encourages the Lord’s “seekers and waiters” to trust the Lord and persevere in anticipation. 

The Lord’s purpose of a transformed and restored people is affirmed with joy and rejoicing not only on the part of the people but on the part of the Lord himself. 

Psalm 30:4-5 (ESV) reads:

“Sing praises to the Lord. O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night,
but joy comes with the morning.”


The nighttime of Zephaniah 1:2-3:8 has given way to...

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