A new survey of church goers is essentially telling preachers, “enough with the jokes already.”
The survey of nearly 2000 Christians found they believe in-depth Biblical teaching in a sermon is over twenty times more important than a good joke.
44% of believers said “Biblical exposition” was the most important thing in a sermon, compared to 2% who said a “sense of humor” was important.
The poll also found 40% of Christians found practical examples of how to live out the Bible’s teachings was the most important part of a sermon, compared to just one percent who said personal anecdotes or stories were important.
Another finding, a majority of Christians do not like long sermons, with 44% believing they should last between 10 and 20 minutes.
However, the institution of a weekly church sermon is alive and well today: nearly 90% of churchgoers disagreed or strongly disagreed that the practice was “outdated”.
The research was commissioned by the Christian Resources Exhibition, an annual trade show in the United Kingdom of hundreds of Christian charities
Stephen Goddard, from CRE, told Premier’s News Hour: “It just shows you that people go to church for a real reason – to hear stuff that’s really going to make a difference to them.
Part of the exhibition is awarding a Sermon of the Year. It was inaugurated by the London School of Theology and Preach Magazine and aims to unearth the next preachers of tomorrow.