3. Adding Value

There are several things we are doing that will add value to the translations. These additional initiatives will not alter the commentaries themselves in any way. The commentaries will be translated and published as they are. Rather, these initiatives are designed to help the Spanish-speaking preachers get more out of the series and upgrade their skill set.

Best Use of the Commentary

What we have in mind here is training that makes sure people understand why the series was structured as it was, and then helps them understand how to meaningfully incorporate it into their own sermon preparation workflow. Sure, for some users this may not be at all necessary. However, for many others, specific suggestions on how to make excellent use of each of the distinctive features of the ZECNT might not only be helpful for getting more value out of the series, but might also significantly contribute to an overall upgrading of their default sermon preparation process.

For example, a preacher may know that crafting a “Big Idea” for each sermon is almost always a game-changing discipline. But coming up with the Big Idea from scratch can be complicated, and faced with the ongoing pressures of life and the relentless advance of the clock, he may never conscientiously get around to formulating one. Now, with the ZECNT in hand, for every passage he has a clearly articulated Exegetical Main Idea staring him in the face. Suddenly by interacting with that seed idea, working up a homiletical Big Idea that the hearer can take home with him no longer seems like such a time-consuming undertaking. Commentary-specific training in this case, then, will focus on helping the preacher take this feature seriously along with some suggestions on how to make it not only an efficient incorporation into his default preparation workflow, but actually a time-saving one that pays huge dividends in terms of his own ability to communicate clearly and his hearers ability to “get it”.

This “best-use” commentary training will be offered not only in clearly written tutorials, but will also be supported by highly condensed video distillations of essential concepts and procedures. We want to give every commentary owner the best chance at the best use of the series.

Improved Expository Preaching Skills

Preaching well, of course, does not depend a commentary. It rests on our diligence in the God-dependent application of basic expository disciplines: exegesis, hermeneutics and homiletics. Our ministry has already spent several years developing content of this nature on the exegetica.net web site. The material there is freely available and promotes the kind of expositional principles that the ZECNT presupposes and supports.

What is more, on the exegetica.net web site Spanish preachers will find a growing collection of free, self-paced courses. These represent a range of practical emphases.

  • Expositional Disciplines Courses. (1. Exegesis, 2. Hermeneutics, 3. Homiletics)
  • Genre-specific Courses (1. Gospels & Acts, 2. Pauline Epistles, 3. General Epistles. 4. Apocalyptic Literature)
  • Specialty Courses (such as Topical Sermons and Preaching on Special Occasions)

For those who wish to go deeper, we can recommend guided, accredited, university-level courses in partnership with various Spanish-language theological institutions. One that we ourselves helped launch and actively participate in is the EET (the online Evangelical School of Theology of the FIEIDE, the Federation of Independent Evangelical Churches of Spain). This program enables preachers from anywhere to participate in an online learning environment through which they can complete a full theological and ministerial training degree.

These options illustrate how the Spanish ZECNT Project can serve not only as a resource for supporting the ministry of preaching, but also as a catalyst to move people into greater ministry training and skill development.