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Grace. Truth. Family.

Cutting Room Floor

One of the most difficult and painful tasks for any well-studied sermon is to condense the material that is most important, relevant and valuable to the audience. Oftentimes, a good deal of good material is left on the preacher’s cutting room floor. Luckily, some of that material has found a place here.

At The Pastor’s Cutting Room Floor, you’ll find a number of things that don’t make it into the sermon, for a variety of reasons: there wasn’t enough time, the point was too small to make, the point was too technical to make, the issue is better dealt with out of the pulpit, etc.

Welcome to the stuff that didn’t make it. I pray it challenges you to deepen your understanding of God’s Word and to ultimately know Him better.

Leviticus 3 – Comparing the Text

For each of the first three offerings in Leviticus 1-3, there has been a noticeable pattern: the text will begin with a paragraph explaining the offering ritual, then the next two paragraphs duplicate much of the first paragraph, only with a less expensive version of the same offering. My method for studying these chapters has…

Leviticus 2 – The Memorial Portion

Leviticus 2 overviews the Grain Offering.  This offering consists of fine flour (semolina), oil, frankincense and salt.  The priest would take a handful of the offering—making sure to include all the frankincense—and burn that handful on the altar.  The rest would be eaten by the priests.  The portion that was burned is called the “memorial…

Proverbs: The Upright Believer

The ESV translates Proverbs 29:10 – “Bloodthirsty men hate one who is blameless and seek the life of the upright.”  Let’s compare that with another translation: “Men of bloodshed hate the blameless, But the upright are concerned for his life” (NASB).             ESV has “bloodthirsty men” as the subject of both verbs – “hate” and…

Galatians 5a – Another “Cutting Edge” Text: Deut 23:1

Today’s text of Scripture was a little… painful.  Paul wasn’t cutting any corners when he wrote: “I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves!” (Gal 5:12; all Scripture in ESV).  Brutal!             Paul plays with his words here, as the Judaizers were trying to convince the Galatians to circumcise themselves as a sign of…

Galatians 4c – What is Typology?

Greg Beale defines typology as “the study of analogical correspondences among revealed truths about persons, events, institutions, and other things within the historical framework of God’s special revelation, which, from a retrospective view, are of a prophetic nature and are escalated in their meaning” (Handbook on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament, pg.…

Galatians 3b – 430 Years? Really?

Paul makes the statement in Galatians 3:17 that the law came “430 years afterward.”  The context is Paul speaking of God’s covenant with Abraham (3:16).  But how do we get from the Abrahamic Covenant to the Law on Mt. Sinai in only 430 years?             Paul’s statement coincides with Exodus 12:40, which says that the…

Galatians 3:8 – Which Verse is Paul Quoting?

Sometimes when a NT author quotes the OT, there’s no mistaking where he’s directing our attention.  For instance, in Galatians 3:6, Paul quotes Genesis 15:6.  It’s clear and precise, a word for word quotation.  No scholar I’m aware of argues otherwise.             However, Galatians 3:8 presents a challenge.  Which verse is Paul quoting?  I’ll give…

Galatians 2a – When Do We Confront?

Reading Galatians 2:11-14, you may wonder, “Why is Paul so harsh with Peter?”  The simple answer is: everything was at stake.  Peter stood condemned before God for hypocritically twisting the Gospel and allowing heresy to creep into the church.  He should’ve known better.  His influence was widespread and contagious.  His error was public, the Gospel…

Galatians 1a – North vs South

“To the churches of Galatia” (Gal 1:2b).             Such a short phrase has erupted into one of the biggest debates of the New Testament.  Who were the Galatians?  Centuries of argument will not be solved in this short blog post, but at least a summary of some of the major positions might help sort through…

Proverbs 24b – Laziness Revisited

We’ve seen a lot of laziness in Proverbs.  That is to say, Proverbs has a lot of verses about the benefits of hard work and the dangers of slothfulness.  There’s an interesting parallel about laziness found in the fourth “Bonus Saying” in Proverbs 24:30-34 (all verses in ESV):             24:30 I passed by the field…

Proverbs 23b-24a: How Do I Count to 30?

After my first sermon on the “30 Sayings of the Wise” (Pr 22b-24) one of our teenagers in the church approached me with a very insightful question: “How do you know where each saying begins and ends?”                   The question was more difficult than he knew.  Commentators lack unity on how to count to 30. …

Kid, Parent, Grandkid

            Proverbs has a lot to say to both parents and children about the most essential human relationship you have in your life.  Because there was so much, I was forced to cut quite a bit from today’s sermon.  Probably the most painful cut I had to make was Proverbs 17:6. Proverbs 17:6 Grandchildren are…

Long Live the King!

When preaching topical sermons in Proverbs, sometimes one has to make a choice about what themes should be used to construct the outline and flow of a sermon. The first thing to do when preaching topically from Proverbs (or anywhere, really) is to gather the data on that topic. For this sermon, I focused on Proverbs that…