"The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."
Ministry of John the Baptist
3 In those days John the Baptist appeared in the desert of Judea announcing, 2 “ Change your hearts and lives! Here comes the kingdom of heaven! ” 3 He was the one of whom Isaiah the prophet spoke when he said:
4 John wore clothes made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist. He ate locusts and wild honey.
5 People from Jerusalem, throughout Judea, and all around the Jordan River came to him. 6 As they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River. 7 Many Pharisees and Sadducees came to be baptized by John. He said to them, “ You children of snakes! Who warned you to escape from the angry judgment that is coming soon? 8 Produce fruit that shows you have changed your hearts and lives. 9 And don’t even think about saying to yourselves, Abraham is our father. I tell you that God is able to raise up Abraham’s children from these stones. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees. Therefore, every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be chopped down and tossed into the fire. 11 I baptize with water those of you who have changed your hearts and lives. The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 12 The shovel he uses to sift the wheat from the husks is in his hands. He will clean out his threshing area and bring the wheat into his barn. But he will burn the husks with a fire that can’t be put out. ”
In The Hum: Call and Response in African Preaching, Evans E. Crawford, with Thomas H. Troeger, relates his analysis of African American folk preaching by relying upon an indigenous scheme for evaluation. The call/response tension in black preaching (derived from a West African tradition) is what drives the musicality of speech in black churches. Crawford refers to this musicality as "hum thoughts" and one can imagine the choir responding with a low rumbling hum to the musical intonations of a motivated preacher.
Key features: a new volume in the Abingdon Preacher's Library, edited by Thomas H. Troeger; a different approach to preaching, firmly rooted in the black experience; leads the reader to understand preaching as an oral event; uses the term "homiletical musicality" to describe the musical understanding of the way sermons are heard and the oral response they awaken in the listener; and, coins new phrases for describing the preaching event.