Original Research

A holistic homiletical approach to preaching based on ancient and modern texts

Victor S. Kim, Malan Nel, Ernest van Eck
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 43, No 1 | a2587 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v43i1.2587 | © 2022 Victor S. Kim, Malan Nel, Ernest van Eck | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 05 May 2022 | Published: 30 August 2022

About the author(s)

Victor S. Kim, Department of Biblical Studies, East Asia Theological Seminary, Anseong, Korea, Republic of
Malan Nel, Department of Practical Theology and Mission Studies, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa
Ernest van Eck, Department of New Testament and Related Literature, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa


This article proposes a homiletical model as an alternative to traditional homiletical approaches in response to the recent membership decline in evangelical churches in Korea. While socio-economic and sociocultural aspects may contribute to the membership decline, the article considers evangelical preaching and its alternative. Evangelical churches have been struggling with the decline of church membership since the early 2010s. While the Korean sociocultural value has changed, evangelical preaching has remained unchanged in its content and homiletical approach. The premises of this article considers how and what the preacher should preach in Korea by analysing and revisiting both classical persuasive rhetoric and the current homiletical approaches as a literature study. The literature study shows how both the elements of classical rhetoric and different homiletical approaches are evident in Paul’s speech at Areopagus in Acts 17. As a sample, the article shows how one can implement the new alternative homiletical approach to Judges 6 in the current social context in Korea. In the act of preaching, the message moves the listeners towards fulfilling God’s missional calling by engaging in the new norm of social distancing in these times of pandemic crisis.

Intradisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary implications: The proposed holistic homiletical approach results from an interdisciplinary discussion synthesising non-religious classical rhetoric and modern religious homiletical approaches. Furthermore, the holistic approach treats different elements within classical rhetoric and homiletical approaches based on intradisciplinary discussion. The Korean preachers should consider the new proposed holistic model in response to church membership decline in Korea.


Korean evangelical preaching; classical persuasive rhetoric; homiletical approaches; speech act; holistic homiletical approach


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