Monday, April 10, 2017

Small-Group Teacher Don't Teach Merely Deep Theological Truth, but Use Stories (Visuals and Illustrations)

Many people are visual learners. Mental pictures always help to focus a message and make it easier to remember. Be practical in your teaching and use illustrations people can readily understand.

Jesus constantly used parables or story illustrations that conveyed a spiritual meaning when He taught. “All these things Jesus spoke to the multitude in parables; and without a parable He did not speak to them” (Matthew 13:34). Jesus knew that spiritual things are often not tangible until we “see” a natural illustration that points us to the spiritual implication. Jesus used mental pictures of a sower sowing seeds or a lost sheep or a hidden treasure. These pictures helped the people understand what He was saying. A good teacher will use stories describing current events or famous people to relate a spiritual concept to the people he is teaching.

I once read Charles H. Spurgeon’s sermons, the prince of preachers of the late 1800s. I was amazed that two-thirds of the content of his sermons were illustrations. This preacher, who led millions of people to his Lord Jesus, knew the importance of using stories and illustrations to help people understand spiritual concepts.

Some of the greatest illustrations you can give as teacher are those of your own life. When I teach on salvation from the Scripture, after I expound the Word and use character examples, as for practical application I give my own testimony. When I teach on singleness, I use examples from my own life. When I teach on forgiveness, I shared about my struggles. People love stories! Deep theological talks are beneficial, but stories are more useful, it help them to remember spiritual truth better.

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