Telling the Whole Story is both a book about preaching and reading the narratives of the Hebrew Bible. John C. Holbert (PhD in Hebrew Bible) was a longtime teacher of preaching and Hebrew Bible at Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, having retired in 2012 after thirty-three years. In this volume he combines his two skills of careful narrative reading and imaginative story preaching to offer the first comprehensive look at this particular kind of sermon proclamation. The reader will also find here an introduction to the long history of story preaching in the history of the church, as well as a primer both in ways to read the narratives more effectively and ways to preach several varieties of story sermons.
At the heart of this book four narratives from the Hebrew Bible are exegeted and are accompanied by four story sermons based on those texts: Genesis 2-3; 1 Samuel 15; Judges 4; and Jonah. The goal of the book is to help preachers who are looking for effective ways to proclaim the gospel using narrative texts from the Hebrew Bible to allow the rich stories of the texts to sound their ancient truth to the modern world.