Sermon Illustrations


Map of the World

A young father wanted to read a magazine but he was being bothered by his little daughter, Vanessa. Finally, he tore a page out of his magazine on which was printed a map of the world. Tearing it into small pieces, he gave it to Vanessa, and said, “Go into the other room and put this back together for me.” After a few minutes, Vanessa returned and handed him the map correctly fitted together. The father was astonished and asked how she had finished so quickly. “Oh,” she said, “On the other side of the paper is a picture of Jesus.


The Gospel of John introduces Jesus as the “Word.” In Stanislas Dehaene’s book about the human brain, Reading in the Brain, he notes that the average adult English reader has 50,000 or more words stored in their mental dictionaries. In a fraction of a second the brain matches the word being read with the memorized meaning of that word. The Apostle John wasn’t privy to Dehaene’s research, yet he still seemed to understand that though there are many words, there is only one Word that translates to eternal life.—Source, Houston Chronicle

King Saud

Clark Clifford shares this reminiscence of his former boss, President Harry Truman: Every morning at 8:30 the president would have a staff meeting. One day the mail clerk brought in a lavender envelope with a regal wax seal and flowing purple ribbons. Upon opening it, the President found a letter from King Saud of Saudi Arabia, whose salutation began, “Your Magnificence, Your Magnificence,” Truman subsequently sent a message to the United Nations supporting the admission of 100,000 Jews into Palestine. Soon afterward he received a second letter from King Saud. This

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill exemplified integrity and respect in the face of opposition. During his last year in office, he attended an official ceremony. Two gentlemen that were seated several rows behind him began whispering, “That's Winston Churchill. They say he is getting senile. They say he should step aside and leave the running of the nation to more dynamic and capable men.” When the ceremony was over, Churchill turned to the men and said, “Gentlemen, they also say he is deaf!”—Vital Speeches, Barbara Hatcher

Expecting the Rapture

We are to work while we wait for the rapture. A gardener for a large estate in northern Italy was conducting a visitor through the castle and the beautiful, well-groomed grounds. As the visitor had lunch with the gardener and his wife, he commended them for the beautiful way they were keeping the gardens. He asked, “By the way, when was the last time the owner was here?

“About ten years ago.” The gardener replied.

The visitor asked, “Then why do you keep the gardens in such an immaculate, lovely manner?”

Logic of a County Worker

Farmer Jack watched two men park their county truck on the side of the road. One man got out and dug a hole, then moved a few feet and dug another. The other man followed, filling in each hole.

The farmer called, “What’s going on with all the digging?”

“We work for the county,” one of the men said.

“I see that, but one of you is digging a hole and the other is filling it. You’re just wasting my tax money.”

How to Stay Safe

1. Avoid riding in automobiles because they are responsible for 20% of all fatal accidents.

2. Do not stay home because 17% of all accidents occur in the home.

3. Avoid walking on streets or sidewalks because 14% of all accidents occur to pedestrians.

4. Avoid traveling by air, rail, or water because 16% of all accidents involve these forms of transportation.

5. Of the remaining 33% of deaths, 32% occur in hospitals. Above all, avoid hospitals.

Letter from President Madison

In his old age, President James Madison suffered from many ailments and took a variety of medicines. It is said that a longtime friend from a nearby county sent him a box of vegetable pills, one of his own home remedies, asking to be informed if they brought relief. In time he received one of those gracious and carefully worded letters for which Madison was noted. It went something like this, “My dear friend, I thank you very much for the box of pills. I have taken them all, and while I cannot say I am better since taking them, it is quite possible that I might have

Empty Seats

I had just finished preaching four times to several hundred teenagers at a harvest rally in Norfolk, Virginia. The youth pastor drove me to the airport where I was to catch a plane to Baltimore, Maryland. I was scheduled on US Airways, Flight 4476, to Philadelphia and then on to Baltimore. The airport in Norfolk was easy to find. When I arrived, there were no lines at the ticket counter, whatsoever. I proceeded to the kiosk where I checked in without a problem, and then I headed for Gate A-11. The terminal was amazingly desolate.

A Revival Funeral

When I was a student in college I heard Dr. John R. Rice tell the story of being invited to preach a revival meeting for a godly pastor. For several months the pastor and Dr. Rice corresponded about a date that would work out for these meetings in both of their schedules. Finally a week was agreed upon and the next Sunday at the close of the service, the Pastor announced the date of the meetings to his people.