At the end of this blog post you’ll find links to a booklet containing approximately 70 teaching outlines covering the whole Westminster Shorter Catechism. There are a number of good commentaries on this historic document. However, I could find little to help me move from these commentaries to simple and memorable teaching titles and outlines, or “skeletons” as they used to be called. My attempt to remedy this is found in these pages.

1. While many catechisms are dealt with individually, I have grouped some together to increase teaching efficiency.

2. Most outlines are on the same page as the catechism(s). However, where this is not possible, I have put the catechisms on one page and the outline on the facing page for ease of use.

3. I provide a “sermon” title for each catechism, the text of the catechism, and then a teaching outline with headings in bold. The catechism words are italicized and gathered under the relevant heading. Sometimes I may underline a catechism word or phrase to emphasize the connection with the heading. Occasionally I will add a couple of words in brackets for extra clarification.

4. There is plenty of white space for note-taking.

5. I’ve put links to the document in pdf and Word format. Feel free to use the Word document to adjust to your own particular teaching situation. I’m not bothered about having my name attached to these, but if you do use my name, just be sure to clearly distinguish your contribution from my own work.

May God use this teaching guide to bring these historic documents to life; instructing the head, igniting the heart, and impacting lives for His glory and our enjoyment.

Westminster Skeletons (1): Teaching Outlines on the Shorter Catechism (pdf)

Westminster Skeletons (1): Teaching Outlines on the Shorter Catechism  (Word)

UPDATE: Here’s a link to Teaching Outlines on the Westminster Confession of Faith.

  • wayne

    Thank you much for offering this resource to the church, Dr. Murray. Your labor of love will be very helpful for my ministry.

    • Shawn Anderson

      This is Fantastic – I still refer to these outlines! I may adjust this a bit to fit into 52 weeks.

      And more often than these, I frequently refer to your outline of the Westminster Confession ch 19-33. Still waiting for ch 1-18.

      Thanks so much!

      • David Murray

        Hey Shawn. if you can hold your breath until tomorrow…!

    • David Murray

      Thanks Wayne.

  • Se7en

    These are great!!! My fifteen yr old is working through the Shorter Catechism for school and he is going to love this… Thank you!!!

  • Fernando

    This is awesome brother-Thank you so much. I teach my kids using Carine Mackenzie’s “My 1st Book of questions & answers.” It’s good to switch it up once in a while.

    Brief history- I was diffident in teaching my family biblical doctrine using the Westminster catechism. I had no theological beef with it-I just thought it was outmoded. However, after I read J.I. Packer & Gary Parretts’ book, “Grounded in the Gospel…” It changed the way I looked at the Westminister and the 1689, and the significant need for them in the churches today.

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  • Steven C. Kettler

    Splendid idea. Thank you so much for this work. Will be looking at Westminster Confession ch 19-33 also.