"The notes that were left behind do not reveal some kind of timeless universal homiletical blueprint we might label 'Barthian' and then discard. Instead, they offer a glimpse at a self-consciously contextual, dialectical, theological, and temporary homiletic forged in the midst of political and personal turmoil.
There are, of course, vast differences between the advanced democracies of the twenty-first century and the Germany of the early 1930s, but those charged with preaching the gospel today in many parts of the world know something of what a partisan and media-saturated environment is like. We know something of economic turmoil. We know something of the pathos that rails against enemies, foreign and domestic. We know something of a church that longs for full pews and public influence. Surely Karl Barth's efforts to teach young people to preach in a time of political, ecclesiastical, academic, rhetorical, and homiletical turmoil have continuing relevance for everyone who walks into a seminary classroom or steps into a pulpit today." (p. 327)
After reading the story of Barth's preaching class in Bonn I could not agree more. It leads me to believe that the form of preaching that I have been drawn to is also an emergency homiletic intended to speak a crucial word in a time when the church is threatened with communal amnesia and the resulting loss of its peculiar identity as a baptised people.