Definition of homiletic in US English:



  • Of the nature of or characteristic of a homily.

    ‘homiletic literature’
    • ‘He finds himself giving advice and telling homiletic stories (remembered from his mother's knee), then fasting to bring an end to the drought which endangers the livelihood of the villagers.’
    • ‘Myerhoff's interest in storytelling corresponded with a broad revival of Jewish storytelling - scholarly, performative, and homiletic - that began in the 1980s.’
    • ‘We then get homiletic lectures on the virtues of Shakespeare, English and the royal family before selected detainees launch spontaneously into a retelling of Pericles.’
    • ‘In the homiletic writings, Jacob symbolizes the spiritual, and Esau the secular.’
    • ‘The writing itself is more conversational than homiletic.’
    • ‘Much of his poetry is technically weak and diffuse, marred by careless versification, awkward shifts in diction, overblown rhetoric, and homiletic digressions.’
    • ‘Taylor's sermons use modern homiletic theory as well as styles of the African-American and nineteenth-century backgrounds.’
    • ‘Based on what we know of Lightfoot's homiletic method, there is good evidence that the Trustees' text represents his finished and delivered manuscript.’
    • ‘Yet his decade of pastoral ministry at Durham also left a communal and homiletic legacy that has not received the recognition it deserves.’
    • ‘This book is dense with academic and homiletic insights.’
    • ‘‘So it is,’ he said, using an old homiletic transition, ‘that we can seldom help anybody.’
    • ‘In some of the greatest homiletic prose ever set down in writing, St. Bernard of Clairvaux interpreted the Song of Songs as the Bible's way of expressing the nuptials of the soul and God.’
    • ‘I would like to suggest a more homiletic answer for our questions.’
    • ‘Finally, there are wonderful entries on pastoral, homiletic, and liturgical practices in the North African church, and also reports on the extensive archeological research at sites connected to his life and times.’
    • ‘His lecture is homiletic in tone and content.’
    • ‘This resource brings together ecumenically and academically diverse preachers, each of whom the church recognizes for their homiletic skills.’
    • ‘Indeed, it is difficult to square the homiletic call for virtue as the answer to the ‘human predicament,’ with which he ends the book, with his hard-boiled foreign policy columns.’
    informative, instructional, informational, illuminating, enlightening, revealing, explanatory, telling
    View synonyms


  • The art of preaching or writing sermons.

    ‘the teaching of homiletics’
    • ‘An ordained pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, he previously taught homiletics and liturgics at the University of Notre Dame.’
    • ‘Since this collection of essays comes from scholars of history, theology, and homiletics, as well as from biblical scholars, it will surely engage the attention of a wide body of those committed to theological education.’
    • ‘Another strength of the book is its attempt to synthesize homiletics, theology, and biblical hermeneutics.’
    • ‘His ideas and their realization in church social service, mission, pastoral care, liturgy, education, and homiletics come from one vision.’
    • ‘While in Carlow he wrote on theology and scripture, literature and homiletics, local history and ecumenism.’
    • ‘Those who teach homiletics, church history, and contextual studies will also find this book helpful, and not just as an addition to their secondary reading lists.’
    • ‘Overall, the book would be useful to preachers and pastors interested in the style of homiletics at a church such as Dexter Avenue, but it has little relevance, otherwise, for modern readers.’
    • ‘In addition to serving as rector of the seminary, he has continued to teach homiletics.’
    • ‘But what I was able to discover confirmed my impression that the theology of preaching is rarely addressed in the contemporary teaching of homiletics in the Episcopal seminaries.’
    • ‘From beginning to end, this book is a surprising and powerful combination of homiletics and humor.’
    • ‘Despite having spent 11 years as a pastor and having taught homiletics for a short while, I was not eager to begin a fresh sermon preparation so late on a Saturday afternoon.’
    • ‘A sadly neglected topic in homiletics today concerns the ethics of preaching.’
    • ‘The first and longest section deals with foundational issues of practical theology itself, the second with homiletics and worship, and the third with topics from Christian education and pastoral care.’
    • ‘A foundational observation of contemporary homiletics is that sermons are events that unfold over time, journeys with a beginning, middle, and end.’
    • ‘Surfing the Web yields numerous other results, all pertinent to the study of sermons and homiletics.’
    • ‘It can be of significant value to many disciplines including English literature, history, biblical studies, homiletics, Bible scholarship, period histories, and others.’
    • ‘In order to assess whether this theological uncertainty is being dealt with, twice over a period of five months in the spring and summer of 2002 I wrote to the professors of homiletics at the eleven Episcopal seminaries.’
    • ‘Among Baptist preachers, the most formative figure in the area of homiletics was John Broadus.’
    • ‘Although he taught Old and New Testament interpretation and homiletics, Sampey's great love was Hebrew and the Old Testament.’
    • ‘This focus places Mathews within a growing trend in the field of homiletics toward considering listeners as a vital part of the preaching event.’
    religious teaching, instruction, message
    View synonyms


Mid 17th century: via late Latin from Greek homilētikos, from homilein ‘converse with, consort’, from homilia (see homily).