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From Pulpit to Page: A Murderous Sermon?

Updated: Apr 29

When it comes to writing, there are many different genres to explore. While some may seem completely unrelated, like writing a sermon and writing a murder mystery, there are actually some surprising similarities between the two!

Building Tension

For starters, both sermons and murder mysteries require the writer to build tension. In a sermon, this might involve creating a sense of conflict or dilemma, leading up to a moral lesson or resolution. In a murder mystery, tension is built by introducing potential suspects, clues, and red herrings, keeping the reader paying attention until the big reveal.

Character Development

Strong character development is also key in both genres. In sermon preparation, the goal is to create relatable characters that the audience can connect with and learn from. In a murder mystery, characters must be intriguing and believable, while also keeping the reader guessing about their potential involvement in the crime.

Plot Structure

Plot structure is another important factor in both sermons and murder mysteries. In a sermon, the narrative must lead the audience to the desired conclusion. In a murder mystery, the plot must keep the reader engaged and guessing until the protagonist solves the crime.


Symbolism is also a powerful tool in both genres. In a sermon, metaphors and symbolic language can help illustrate a point. In a murder mystery, symbolic clues can hint at the true identity of the killer, adding another layer of intrigue.


Finally, language is crucial in both sermons and murder mysteries. In a sermon, language must be clear and impactful. In a murder mystery, it must be engaging and descriptive, bringing the reader into the world of the story.

In conclusion, while writing a sermon and writing a mystery story may seem like completely different tasks, there are actually several similarities between the two. Both require attention to plot structure, character development, language, and the use of symbolism to convey their message. So, whether you started writing a sermon or a great mystery, keep these similarities in mind and use them to enhance your craft!

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