Preachers, how long will the impact of your sermon last? Hopefully a bit longer than the impact of this blog post.

According to bitly, the Twitter, Facebook and Google+ links to this post will have generated half of all the views it will every receive within 3 hours of its posting. After that it’s downhill rapidly.

The only bright spot is Youtube, whose links produce about 7 hours of attention. (Time to start video blogging again.)

Thankfully the Holy Spirit is promised to accompany preaching in a way that He is not promised to blogging.

Maybe that should affect our priorities?

  • Nathan W. Bingham

    Good reflection Dr. Murray.

    Now for a slightly tongue-in-cheek side-comment… Could it not be considered a good Sunday, at least in today’s day and age, if congregants remembered the sermon 3 hours after they heard it? Maybe we (Christians) need to be rebuked for paying more attention to links than to the Word preached.

    • David Murray

      Yes, Nathan, 3 hours post-sermon remembrance would be quite an achievement for most of us.

  • James S

    But, blogging AND preaching is a whole nother deal.

    I download and listen to sermons preached as far back as the 60′s (Martyn Lloyd Jones, Dick Lucas, etc., so long after it has been preached and forgotten, people are still listening to them, and they may as well be brand new because we never heard most of them before.

    But my point is, that in this day and technological age, a preacher should record his sermons and post the audio. From that point on, they could live on forever, and have an unlimited impact much moreso than a blog entry. So if a Preacher has a blog, he should give top priority to posting downloadable mp3 files of his audio sermons and lectures on that blog. It is current open door of opportunity which absolutely must be taken advantage of.

    (I preach to the choir with you, but many blogging preachers & theologians still don’t post audio).

    They need to remember that those little sanza and Ipod mp3 players have built in microphones and they could be recording their talks very easily if they aren’t already).

    • David Murray

      James, I agree. It’s fantastic to have such access to audio resources via mp3.

  • Dan

    In a way I see these varieties of social media as a possible catalyst to more meaningful study on the part of the audience, with admittedly very few bothering to do that. These types of things lend perspective but do not by themselves renew the mind in the same manner as preaching and first-hand exposure to the Word of God.

    One of the most beneficial things I’ve ever done apart from hearing live sermons preached, is to begin a study of Romans aided by the audio of one of my favorite preachers, who is deceased. After a couple of years I’m about halfway through the book, and I’ve recorded some notes along the way. To have those messages on MP3 is wonderful, because they allow repeat listening in case an important point is missed. It makes for a valuable redemption of my commute time, and I find them particularly helpful during and after exercise. In those sermons I’ve learned valuable church history lessons, critical doctrines of the faith and how they were worked out, exposure of a variety of theological errors, and sharp-minded reasoning that has opened my eyes to the riches of the life of faith as taught by the Reformers.

    Why did I start doing that to begin with? It was because I hadn’t been getting this kind of teaching in church, and hadn’t been reading Scripture; I was neither being sharpened, nor a sharpener. In a sense, I was regressing rather than progressing in my Christian life, and I knew that it was up to me to take responsibility to get back on track. My new (at the time) pastor, however, also helped catalyze this process in his sequential preaching of Scripture, something that had not been taking place at my church. Now that he’s gone, and the sequentiality of preaching he established has been interrupted, my study of Romans, aided by the audio sermons, is helping to sustain me in my church’s current pastor-less condition.

    • David Murray

      Thanks for helpful story, Dan, to underline James’ point.