First off, I stop trying to be original in my sermons. Once in a great while I’ll write one that almost qualify as original, but the only problem is that I am confident that someone, somewhere has thought through what I just preached on. And without knowing I may have quoted them indirectly, or restated their original thought. Also I do strive for integrity in my messages and always give proper credit when I know that I am utilizing someone else ideas, etc.
I think about this often when writing my sermons. I read a great deal and much of my thought process is influenced by what I read, including blogs. But when I am writing I am not necessarily consulting any books just expressing what I have learned. Sometime I can’t even remember where I may have read it.
If I do quote someone directly I always give the reference. There are also times when one book influences me in such a great way, that I seek to craft a series of sermons based on the person’s writings. At that point so much of what they said has influenced my message that I just state that this series of messages are based on the works of such and such author and that they are more than welcome to buy the book and follow along. When this happens I restate in my own words what the original author said, and I present it in a way that my listeners will understand. It is never a word for word, and if it is (a direct quote), again I do give proper credit.
Many of the books that I read state that they hope that it will help pastors in their understanding and messages. So I think that at least in someway I use their material in a way that the author had hoped for.
Anyhow, anybody wonder about this but was afraid to ask? BTW: I do write all of my sermons, and I have used other peoples materials when teaching various classes like the Theology Program that Michael Patton offers, but even then I add or remove various parts.