Tony Evans’ Book of Illustrations
Published in 2009
Review by Ryan Ho
There are a lot of sermon illustration books on the market. Unfortunately, so many of them reproduce the same stories that were published in other volumes, simply re-categorizing them to make the sale. In addition, many of these volumes are heavy on one-sentence anecdotes and quotes but light on stories, providing little that can meaningfully fill out a sermon.
Tony Evans’ Book of Illustrations is a breath of fresh air in the midst of the plethora of stale material currently available. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that I could not find a single story in Tony Evans’ book that I’d heard previously. This volume is jam-packed with new illustrations. Almost every story took about half a column of the two-columned page to print, some even taking up the entire page. Even better, most of the stories are truly meaningful. I could see myself using nearly every one as a sermon relief point or as a sermon introduction–something I cannot say for any other sermon illustration book.
Each sermon illustration is arranged alphabetically by topic, like most other sermon illustration books. Unlike some other books, however, the topics are very relevant and should make finding meaningful illustrations easy. There aren’t too many, but they are also not too simple. Examples include “Fellowship,” “Holy Spirit,” “Sin,” and “Word of God.”
Of all the books that I have seen come through our bookstore this year, this volume is easily on my top three list and is vying for #1. If you do any amount of preaching or teaching at all, this is a book that you absolutely must purchase. For everything it offers, I’d gladly pay double the price that Tony Evans’ Book of Illustrations sells for. Buy this book today, say a word of thanks to your worn copy of Swindoll’s Ultimate Book of Illustrations as you put it back on the shelf, and start preparing a fresh and meaningful sermon for Sunday worship.