Getting Started: A Quick Guide to Homiletics Online

Welcome! Homiletics Online is an easy tool that allows you to read and search through sermon preparation material with ease. You have access to the most recent material as well as our entire library of Articles, Commentary, Illustrations, Children's Sermons, and more!

IN THIS ARTICLE

Everything starts on the Home page.

Let's take a brief tour of the Home page to get familiar with its content and tools.
At the top, you'll see the navigation bar and the powerful search window:

In the top red bar: 

  • Contact Us pops up a window so you can send an email to Account Maintenance, Technical Support, Editors, or Management. 
  • Help opens our help library in a new browser tab. The answers to most questions are here. 
  • Logout, of course, logs you out of the website. 

In the orange navigation bar: 

  • The Homiletics Online logo will always bring you back to the Home Page, no matter where you are within the site. 
  • Issues takes you to every bi-monthly issue we've published since January 1991. 
  • Sermon Treatments displays every individual sermon installment going back to 1991. 
  • Commentary provides cultural, historical, and contextual meaning of the weekly readings. 
  • Illustrations offers thousands of anecdotes, quotations, and references that you can work into your sermons. 
  • Children's Sermons opens our collection of stories that can help you reach the smallest members of your congregation. 
  • Worship Resources has thousands of Calls to Worship, Invocations, Litanies, Pastoral Prayers, Benedictions, and more that you can use in your worship service. 
  • Topics is an alphabetical list of topics and themes that our Sermon Treatments have addressed. 
  • Blog contains essays, articles, and columns written by our editors and other contributors. 

The Search window: 

  • Select a category and search the entire library to find just what you need from that chosen group.

There are several ways to find material on the website. There's the keyword search that uses the words you enter. And there are various Topics or Scripture lists found throughout the site. 
The keyword search window is front and center on the Home page. It's likely to be the first thing you see.

On other pages, you'll see the search window in the upper-right of the page:

Filtering your search. 
The keyword search default is "Search All", which looks through ALL the material in the library. That's a lot of stuff, but you can easily limit that search to just the type of material you're after. 
Click the down arrow next to the search button to reveal a drop-down menu: Sermon Treatments, Commentary, Illustrations, Children's Sermons, and Worship Resources. 

Select the type of material you want, and then type your keyword(s) in the search window. 
As you begin typing, the search window will display a drop-down window with a list of possible words you may be typing. Either continue typing or pick a subject from the menu.  
In this example, we were searching for a Sermon Treatment for Easter. After typing only two letters, the Easter topic appeared as a choice. We selected it from the list and all Easter Sermon Treatments were displayed. 

Explore this powerful search tool to see just what's available to you as a member. 

Searching the topics lists. 

In the left column of most pages, you'll see a list of Scripture References or a list of categories. 
Scripture References 
After each name on the list is a number indicating how many items that topic has. To see those items: 
  1. Select the round button or click the plus (+) sign. 
  2. All the available Scriptures for that book are displayed. 
  3. Select the Scripture you want and all available readings are displayed in the page's main column. 

Worship Resources 

The left column of the Worship Resources page lists the types of resources available: Affirmations of Faith, Benedictions, Calls to Worship, etc.  
This list works the same way as the Scripture References above. The big difference is that clicking the plus (+) sign displays the seasons of the church year instead of Bible verses. Select the type of resource you want, and then select the season to see all available resources for that type and season. 

As you can see, there are many ways to find the material you need to produce a first-class sermon and worship experience. The more you work with the tools, the more proficient you'll become at using the website. 

Use the reader view or print view. 

Reader View 
While the entire site is mobile-friendly and will work well on any device, sometimes you want to get rid of all distractions when you read.  
When you are viewing a Sermon Treatment, you will see the  Reader View icon and link in the upper right corner. This will show you all of the elements of the Sermon Treatment in a reader-friendly format. This is perfect for viewing the material on your tablet devices.

When you want to go back to the site to search more, you can click the Turn Off Reader View link in the upper right.

Print 
Next to the Reader View link, you'll see a  Print link. This will open your print preview modal to print the entire Sermon Treatment including all of its elements such as Commentary, Illustrations, Children's Sermon, and Worship Resources.

 

Anytime you are viewing a page where you only see one type of content (such as commentary or worship resources), the page is printer-friendly. You can use your mouse to right-click and choose "print" or you can choose print from your browser's print menu.

View an entire issue.

If you'd like to read an entire bi-monthly issue, go to the Issues tab in the Header. 

Click on an image or the "Read Issue" link and you will go to a page that includes all of the text to an entire issue.

You will then see the entire issue on the page. You can jump to a specific weekly installment using the Table of Contents

You can also turn on the Reader View if you like a cleaner reading experience. Or in the upper right, you can Choose Another Issue.