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All articles posted by
Kent Anderson Ph.D.

Dr. Anderson is the Northwest Academic Dean and Professor of Homiletics

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Training Biblical Leaders and Preachers in Their Own Country

Categories: Northwest NewsPresident's PenVol 15 Issue 2. (October 3rd, 2014)

It is wonderful to train biblical leaders and preachers in our own country, but it is also fantastic to be able to do so in other more needy parts of the world. That was my privilege this past August, as I traveled to Cali, Colombia to work with the Langham Partnership as keynote speaker for […]

Board of Governors Award – Evan Scales

Categories: Northwest NewsVol 15 Issue 2. (October 3rd, 2014)

The Board of Governors Award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated extraordinary commitment to the mission of Northwest Baptist Seminary. In recognition of such commitment, the Board of Governors is pleased to present this award to Evan Scales.

Immerse is Accredited

Categories: AnnouncementsImmerseNorthwest NewsProgramsVol 15 Issue 2. (October 3rd, 2014)

We are very excited to announce that Northwest Baptist Seminary is now fully accredited by The Association of Theological Schools.

Alumni in Ministry

Categories: Northwest NewsPresident's PenVol 15 Issue 1. (April 15th, 2014)

It is always exciting to hear about alumni who are doing well in the ministries for which they are called. I was amazed to see a picture of Northwest alum, Geordan Rendle on a giant video screen in New York City’s Times Square as he was being announced for this role as president of Youth […]


Categories: Northwest NewsPresident's PenVol 14 Issue 2. (October 15th, 2013)

It is a wonderful thing to observe how God leads. When Mark Carroll told me he was leaving Northwest my feelings were mixed. On one hand, I was thrilled to see Mark step up to lead one of our great churches. After all, that is why we are doing this work. On the other hand, […]

We Love Our Alumni!

Categories: Northwest NewsPresident's PenVol 14 Issue 1. (April 15th, 2013)

We love our alumni. Most schools do. It is deeply encouraging to learn ways by which those who have studied with us have gone on to apply their education in fruitful ways. I thought I would mention three of our alumni from across the years, who have come to our attention in particular ways these […]

Board of Governors Award given to Janet Anderson

Categories: Northwest NewsVol 14 Issue 1. (April 15th, 2013)

The Board of Governors of Northwest Baptist Seminary is pleased to present its first Board of Governors Award to Janet Anderson. Janet, it has been said, “was a woman’s woman.” From the time she started her career in nursing until she went home to be with her Lord, Janet never did things in half measures. […]

Reflections on 10 Years of Leadership Development

Categories: Church BoardsLeadershipNorthwest NewsVol 14 Issue 1. (April 15th, 2013)

For the last ten years, Lyle Schrag has served on the Northwest faculty and as Director of the Fellowship Center for Leadership Development. Lyle is concluding his full-time service with Northwest, but will continue to be involved with us in a number of ways, including serving as an Immerse faculty mentor. Northwest President, Kent Anderson […]

Share in the Work

Categories: Feature Article. (April 10th, 2012)

Northwest has a big vision for the future of its ministry. While we are not a large seminary, we have a large sense of what God can do through us as we pioneer innovative ways of pursuing ministry leadership development in partnership with our churches. We are all about developing Christ-centred ministry leaders in the church, for the church, and in partnership with the church.

ACTS Appreciation Chapel for Dr. Larry Perkins

Categories: ACTS SeminariesFeature ArticleSeminary. (December 8th, 2010)

On December 7, we honored our out-going Northwest Baptist Seminary President, Larry Perkins with a special chapel service at ACTS Seminaries. The service included reflective comments from Dr. Perkins’ longtime friend and colleague, Bill Badke. A highlight was Larry’s brief reflections on his service and particularly upon the significant contribution of his wife, Judy. A […]

John Brand on Expository Preaching

Categories: Preaching. (October 13th, 2010)

“There are many hallmarks of a true church … but none more vital and strategic than the faithful preaching of the Word of God.”

“Deep Church”

Categories: Book Reviews. (November 6th, 2009)

I was instantly drawn to Jim Belcher’s objective in his new book, Deep Church. Belcher, who has been something of an “insider” to the conversation over many years, is searching for a “third way beyond emerging and traditional.”

How Do You Handle the Word of God?

Categories: BiblePreaching. (June 29th, 2009)

Lifeway research looked at 450 online sermons in order to discern the place of Scripture in contemporary preaching.

The Pre-Service

Categories: ChurchPreaching. (June 11th, 2009)

I recently had the privilege of preaching and teaching at The Meeting Place, an innovative Fellowship Baptist church in Nanaimo, BC. Putting together worship at this church is a logistical challenge given that they gather several hundred people over multiple services in a rented movie theatre. If church isn’t done by noon, they will be […]

The Necessity of Words

Categories: Preaching. (May 26th, 2009)

I was pleased to see a piece by St. Francis biographer, Mark Galli on Francis’ famous dictum that we "preach the gospel: if necessary use words." This sentence is often used to suggest that the gospel can be preached without recourse to language. For the most part, this is a misunderstanding of Francis who was […]

A Sense of Expectation

Categories: Preaching. (May 8th, 2009)

Here’s a quote from my book, Choosing to Preach, pages 250-51… "We just don’t expect much from God when set to preaching. Many preachers believe that God will speak through his Word but that it will happen in some muted sense. We don’t expect our skin to tingle. We don’t imagine that the hair on […]

Doctrine that Dances

Categories: Preaching. (April 6th, 2009)

I don’t hear a great deal of doctrinal preaching these days. I hear a lot of pragmatic preaching, a lot of exegetical preaching, a lot of narrative preaching, but not so much preaching that intends to explicate the great doctrines of the Scripture for the edification of the hearers. Perhaps this has something to do […]

Grateful for God’s Protection

Categories: Family. (March 20th, 2009)

The following story, incredible as it sounds, is true. I share it as testimony to the protecting power of God and the tremendous benefit of belonging to a community of God’s people. Last Friday my wife and I received a disturbing midnight telephone call from our 18-year old son who is temporarily working in London, […]

Will Video Venues Kill Preaching as We Know It?

Categories: Preaching. (March 3rd, 2009)

Will video venues eventually mean the death of preaching? This is the provocative idea argued by Bob Hyatt on his Hyatt cites Shane Hipps in his book Flickering Pixels, who suggests that “every medium when pushed to an extreme, will reverse on itself, revealing unintended consequences.” The car, for example, eased our mobility, but […]

Let’s Get the Application Right!

Categories: Preaching. (February 13th, 2009)

I just spent some time working through Haddon Robinson’s excellent article, The Heresy of Application with a group of students. Robinson contends that there is more heresy preached in application than through exegesis. It is when we try to concretize the listener’s response to God’s Word that we often get in trouble. In our attempt […]

How Women Hear the Sermon

Categories: Preaching. (January 28th, 2009)

I have long written and taught about the value of investing sermon time developing “the problem.” By that I have meant that preachers ought to utilize “the listener’s voice” to identify with the hearer’s struggle to embrace the big idea of the sermon. We can’t always be telling people what they ought to know, believe, […]

Obama’s Oratory

Categories: Preaching. (January 12th, 2009)

Whether or not you supported Barack Obama in the recent American election, or are pleased by the result, you have to appreciate him for his oratorical skill. Nurtured in the African-American preaching tradition, Obama inspires with his sweeping rhetoric. The man is a truly effective public speaker. Some might argue that he hasn’t yet come […]

Glad to Let the Bible Speak

Categories: Preaching. (December 1st, 2008)

When I finished preaching yesterday, I was encouraged by the normal comments from people who had appreciated what I had to say. I was a little surprised then, when one woman rather breezily said, “Thanks for the sermon, though I disagreed with you.” “Oh,” I asked, “what did you disagree with?” It turns out that […]

Teaching at The Journey Centre

Categories: PreachingSeminary. (October 28th, 2008)

Some of you may have heard about "The Journey Centre," our new initiative in graduate theological education in Edmonton. I just returned from a few days of teaching at The Journey, where I was teaching my basic homiletics as a modular course. This time we got together to do the theoretical and theological work. In […]

The Candidating Sermon

Categories: Preaching. (October 10th, 2008)

Many of us know the stress and pressure that comes with the candidating process. We want to put our best foot forward, but we do not want to make such a good impression that we are never able to live up to it in the future. I remember hearing an older pastor years ago saying […]

Preaching to Remember Those We Never Knew

Categories: Preaching. (September 24th, 2008)

I came across the following passage, yesterday, as I was reading Marisha Pessl’s Special Topics in Calamity Physics. The novelist is describing a memorial service for her protagonist’s private school teacher and mentor. “Johnson went on and on, giving an equal amount of eye contact to every third of the congregation with the mechanized surety […]

Endorsing Candidates from the Pulpit

Categories: CultureMinistryPreaching. (September 8th, 2008)

With election fever across North America, it might be helpful for us to consider how we guide our listeners from the pulpit. Traditionally, preachers have understood that while we should feel free to speak broadly about issues that are relevant from the perspective of the Scriptures, we should draw the line at telling our listeners […]

Summertime Preaching

Categories: Preaching. (July 21st, 2008)

Summer offers a different pace of life for most of us and life at church is no different. Even preachers need vacation, meaning that pulpits everywhere are filled with unfamiliar faces. In many such churches, summer relief comes from associate staff, offering an excellent opportunity for youth pastors, worship pastors, and other such leaders to […]

They’re All Funny!

Categories: Preaching. (June 27th, 2008)

I’ve noticed something about some of the better-known preachers of our time. They’re all funny! People like Rick Warren, Rob Bell, Andy Stanley, Erwin McManus – these guys will crack their listeners up. They know how to tell a story that is both insightful and entertaining. Listening to them is not only helpful, but it […]

Chronological Bible Storying

Categories: BibleBible Story. Tags:
(January 31st, 2008)

My friend and mentor, Grant Lovejoy, sent me a link this morning to the new website for Chronological Bible Storying. The website offers the methodology, research, and reports from the field into this powerful way of preaching to oral and indigenous cultures. According to the website, "Chronological Bible Storying (CBS) is the process of encountering […]

Eat This Book!

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(November 28th, 2007)

I’ve just completed Eugene Peterson’s improbably titled, Eat This Book and I cannot recommend it highly enough. This “conversation in the art of spiritual reading” both values Scripture while helping us see its accessibility. The book argues for the validity and necessity of exegesis for spiritual growth. It describes in detail the practice of Lectio […]

Feeding the Preacher

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(November 19th, 2007)

One of the problems I have observed is that some of us think we preach better than we actually do. Truthfully, most of us probably suffer from that problem. If I’m honest, I’d probably have to admit that I have a higher sense of the effectiveness of my own preaching than what the listeners might […]

Preaching with Variety

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(November 8th, 2007)

_Preaching with Variety: How to Re-create the Dynamics of Biblical Genres_. By Jeffrey D. Arthurs. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel, 2007, 978-0-8254-2019-1, 238 pp., $15.99, paperback. Several years ago I embarked upon a project. Having been given a short interim preaching opportunity at a nearby church, I decided to choose a different biblical genre for every […]

Karen’s Sermon Art

Categories: NewsPreaching. Tags:
(October 30th, 2007)

Yesterday my wife participated in our pastor’s sermon by illustrating his sermon with a simultaneous sermon painting. What’s that, you ask? Let me try to explain. Brian Stewart was preaching from Philippians 2:15 about how we are to shine as lights for Christ in the places we’re located. He had a lot to say about […]

Apologetic Preaching

Categories: EvangelismFaithPreaching. Tags:
(October 19th, 2007)

J. P. Moreland of Talbot Seminary was the keynote speaker at this year’s meetings of the Evangelical Homiletics Society. He took the opportunity to offer a proposal for “apologetic preaching.” While such an approach is not new, Moreland seemed to suggest that apologetics could and should take a much higher place in our thinking about […]

Demographic information from the 2006 Canadian Census

Categories: Cultural IssuesCultureMarriage. Tags:
(October 10th, 2007)

Our NBS board recently received a copy of demographic information based on the 2006 Canadian Census. The results are no less interesting for the fact that they are predictable. Some key areas of interest… -over 5.8 million Canadian taxfilers donated a record $7.9 billion to charities that provide offical tax receipts – almost 1% more […]

The Crossing Tender

Categories: EvangelismPreaching. Tags:
(October 1st, 2007)

I heard Jeff Arthurs from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary read this little parable at an Evangelical Homiletics Society gathering many years ago. Afterwards I asked him for a copy so that I could share it with my classes. It was published in 1919 by William Eleazar Barton, otherwise known as “Safed the Sage”. The piece has […]

Dynamic Range

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(September 20th, 2007)

Having heard hundreds of students preach in my various classes, I’ve discovered that there is a limit to a person’s “dynamic range.” Like a musician that can sing over multiple octaves, some preachers are capable of hitting the high notes as well as the low notes, speaking loudly and confidently at one point of the […]

The Word Must Be Heard

Categories: BiblePreaching. Tags:
(September 11th, 2007)

We have a new lead pastor at our church (Parkland Fellowship) and we couldn’t be happier. Yesterday, Brian Stewart offered us a dramatic recitation of the entire book of Philippians, from memory! I had memorized the book of Philippians some years ago, but I had never had the courage (or the wisdom) to offer it […]

Fundamentalist Atheists

Categories: Atheism. Tags:
(August 22nd, 2007)

I read a particularly intelligent response  to Richard Dawkins’ fundamentalist atheism in my morning newspaper. Margaret Somerville is becoming as a critic of Dawkins, partly because she doesn’t seem to be coming from a Christian perspective. As founding director of the Center for Medicine, Ethics and Law at McGill University (Montreal) she brings a credible […]

Global Warming and the Ability to Know

Categories: HermeneuticsIssues of the Day. Tags:
(August 13th, 2007)

I’m a global warming skeptic. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not that I don’t care about the environment. As a child of God I understand my responsibility as a steward of creation and I take it seriously. It’s just that I’m not sure I can believe all of the hype surrounding climate change. This morning, […]

The Problem with Preaching

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(August 1st, 2007)

Mike Mawhorter sent me a link to this article by David Allis which I found to be one of the more helpful of the current critiques of preaching: CLICK HERE My response is that much of what he says is truthful. Preaching, for instance, is expensive. Preachers often can’t be trusted. At the same time, […]

Research on Second Career Pastors

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(July 23rd, 2007)

Here is a link to some fascinating new research on the increased incidence of second-career pastoral leadership, particularly in conservative protestant denominations. It appears that pastors are starting older and that they usually have had a career before they come into ministry. In general, I find this trend encouraging. Pastors with real life experience ought […]

Roast Preacher

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(July 12th, 2007)

Preachers need to have thick skin. Whenever a person gets up in front of a crowd to speak, people are going to evaluate what they have to say – which may be a mild way of describing the kind of scrutiny under which a preacher is placed. Roast Preacher is the most common dish served […]

Alistair McGrath and the New Atheism

Categories: MinistryReligionTheology. Tags:
(July 4th, 2007)

Here are a few notes taken from a lecture I heard by Alistair McGrath at the International Congress on Preaching in April. The address, titled “Preaching Truth in the Shadow of the Idol of Science” was directed at the recent writings of Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennet, and Christopher Hitchens, all of whom seem to be […]

Concept Cars and Pioneers

Categories: ChurchEmergent. Tags:
(June 21st, 2007)

There’s a lot of talk out there about some high profile “emerging” churches. We’re hearing about “progressional dialogue” preaching, worship stations, and other innovations. The implication seems to be that these things will characterize the way we all do church in a few years. I’m not so sure. I tend to think of these kinds […]

Stolen Sermons

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(June 12th, 2007)

Thomas Long has written a tremendous piece on pulpit plagiarism that you can find here in it’s entirety: Stolen Goods. The article traces the arguments for and against using materials developed by others in the pulpit. Long comes down on the issue of honesty and integrity. He writes… A good test of this point is […]

When Life Intrudes on Preaching

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(June 1st, 2007)

I received this message from one of my former students, Shawn Barden, last week. Shawn is pastoring a great church in Fernie, BC. His message encouraged me and I thought it might encourage you as well. Hey Kent Just wanted to share a note that might make you smile and feel encouraged. On Wednesday last […]

Can Preachers Have Friends in the Congregation?

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(May 23rd, 2007)

I had another interesting conversation with one of our Doctor of Ministry students last week. Robert Campbell is a pastor from Corona, California and is working on the question of whether or not a pastor can have friends in the congregation. Campbell contends that spiritual formation happens within community and that the pastor needs to […]

Alternatives for Change

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(May 14th, 2007)

…churches are institutional in the way that they operate, because they are venues for the organization of corporate worship, outreach, and discipling among people. No matter how loose, structures eventually harden and at that point a church has to make some difficult decisions about its long-term validity and relevance. I had a conversation over lunch […]

Appetizing Sermons

Categories: Preaching. (May 3rd, 2007)

One evening my wife offered me a meal that didn’t look familiar to me. Something about the look on my face must have suggested something other than full appreciation. “What’s wrong,” she said. “It’s everything that you like.” True enough, the dish only offered ingredients that I normally enjoyed, but they were offered in a […]

Reflections from Rome

Categories: Easter. Tags:
(April 25th, 2007)

It has been interesting for me to think about spiritual formation from a different perspective spending these days in Rome. I suppose that when I arrived here I was prepared for the Coliseum, the Forum and all the vestiges of Imperial Rome. I was less prepared for the influence of the Roman Catholic experience. It […]

Rolls-Royce Never Fails

Categories: HeavenSalvation. Tags:
(April 16th, 2007)

The following story was told by Mac Brunson of First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida in his sermon, The Purpose of the Passion which you can hear on the most recent Preaching Today Audio CD (#283). For more information on this audio series and for other online features check out A man who lived […]

Visual Preaching

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(April 9th, 2007)

The other day I had the pleasure of hearing my good friend, Dr. John Auxier preach. John is Dean of Trinity Western University and an expert in marriage and family counseling. He is also a very fine preacher. His sermon was taken from John 11 and 12, focusing on the dinner party where Mary of […]

Good News About Seminary Training

Categories: Seminary. Tags:
(March 30th, 2007)

I heard some good news about theological education over the weekend at the Chief Academic Officer’s Meetings of the Association of Theological Schools (ATS). It seems that people are happier with seminary education than we may have thought. Barbara Wheeler of the Auburn Institute reported on data gathered from an array of comprehensive surveys over […]

Secret Spirituality

Categories: Spiritual Formation. Tags:
(March 21st, 2007)

Lately I’ve been preaching through the Sermon on the Mount, particularly chapter six and Jesus’ requirement that the forms of spiritual formation be kept secret. When you give, he says, don’t let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. When you pray, go into the closet and lock the door. When you […]

Ready to Preach

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(March 14th, 2007)

Last week I was part of the examination committee for a Doctor of Ministry dissertation written by Pastor David Acree from Lethbridge, Alberta. David’s dissertation examined the matter of the preacher’s sense of readiness to preach. I’m pleased to say that he passed the exam and will graduate this spring. The question is interesting. Every […]

Taking the Heat

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(March 6th, 2007)

Recently, I preached the same sermon at two consecutive services. In between the first and second services I took some heat from an older man who suggested that “if anyone came into the service confused, I left them more confused.” I tried to offer a gentle response, hoping to clarify what may have been a […]

Let the Fish Run

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(February 26th, 2007)

Last week I was talking to my students about the challenge of helping listeners overcome their objections to the sermon’s big idea. I likened the challenge to fishing. I’m not much of a fisherman, but I know that once you’ve got the fish on the hook, you don’t just bring the fish into the boat. […]

Pre-judging the Text

Categories: Preaching. Tags:
(February 16th, 2007)

I ran into the same problem with two of my students yesterday. Both of them submitted sermon plans that required a little help. When I suggested alternate and more appropriate ways of approaching the text, they both agreed with me. The problem, they said, was that the texts and themes had been assigned to them […]

Spiritual Leadership: Acting with Integrity

Categories: Leadership. (January 12th, 2001)

It is thought that spiritual people don’t make good leaders. Yet a biblical view holds that leadership without spiritual character is incompetent. Integrating competence and character is frightening for spiritual leaders aware of their failings. However, leaders with the integrity to own this kind of honesty will find the grace they need to "finish first." Spiritual leaders aren’t […]

“Being Church”

Categories: Book Reviews. (December 10th, 1007)

Being Church: Explorations in Christian Community It has been my pleasure to participate in the publication of a small book written by our faculty at Northwest Baptist Seminary. The book, Being Church: Exploration in Christian Community was recently published in honor of the former Regional Director of the Fellowship of Evangelical Baptist Churches in British […]