Jump directly to the Content

The Next Level

I ONCE PREACHED ON THE "Do not provoke your children to wrath" passage from Ephesians 6:4. I approached it from the perspective of a thirty-two-year-old dad of three preschoolers—that's what I was—struggling to find the line between discipline and punishment. I was convinced I had thoroughly exegeted the text before I began preparing my sermon.

I recently revisited the same text while preaching a series from the book of Ephesians. I pulled my study notes from my files and was startled to see how much of my life experiences as a thirty-two-year-old not only influenced my sermon content and illustrations but my exegetical research as well. I found I could not dip into my old notes and simply review discoveries I had made in a previous exploration. I was now fifty, the father of three adult daughters. I found one commentary particularly helpful this time as I studied the passage, the same commentary I looked at all those years ago but from which I chose to use almost no material. Not only ...

Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

From the Magazine
God’s Promises Are Clearest When We Turn Out the Lights
God’s Promises Are Clearest When We Turn Out the Lights
Christians have every reason to reduce light pollution.
Editor's Pick
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Learning to walk under the weight of ministry's many hats.