News reports in recent weeks have been filled with stories about more than 250,000 classified U.S. diplomatic cables and documents that are suddenly public record due to the work of WikiLeaks, a website produced by a rather strange Australian/Swedish character who believes nothing should be secret except his own location.

It seems that due to the quality safeguards used by government computer specialists, a soldier in Iraq had access to loads of military documents, State Department documents and the secret recipes of KFC chicken and Coca-Cola. He copied it all onto a CD—I don’t suppose anyone thought it was unusual that an Army private was downloading hundreds of thousands of documents from government servers, did they?—and gave it to the WikiLeaks folks, who promptly dumped this massive load of material onto the Internet for everyone to see. It’s apparently such a big deal that The New York Times thought it was worth reporting.

Now government officials and diplomats are wringing their hands over the grabbing and dumping of this material. Meanwhile, I’m wringing my hands wondering why no one has even made an attempt to download and publish my documents.

Hey, I’ve got file after file of sermons, articles, interviews and lots of other stuff. I may not have any clever cables describing the eating habits of North Korean dictators and such, but there are some pretty meaty expositions of 1 Thessalonians in here. I’ve got that series of sermons from Malachi that was quite well received back in the day. Why doesn’t anybody want to steal those? Where’s my document dump?

It’s not just me. Across America and around the world, there are thousands of preachers typing to save those sermons on relatively unprotected computers. Yet I haven’t heard a word about massive thefts of homiletical documents, and The New York Times is silent on this mysterious absence of digital sermonic theft.

It seems that hackers are only interested in stealing diplomatic cables, military secrets, and the plots of future Star Trek movies, not sermons. While that shows remarkably limited perspective on their part, I don’t think we can just take this sitting down. I think we need to enlist a new class of seminary-trained hackers who can invade pastoral computers, grab all those expository messages and dump them on an unsuspecting public.

WikiSermons, anyone? Anyone?

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About The Author

Michael Duduit is the founding publisher and editor of Preaching magazine. He is also the founding Dean of the new College of Christian Studies and Professor of Christian Ministry at Anderson University in Anderson, South Carolina. Michael is author and editor of several books, including the Handbook of Contemporary Preaching (Broadman & Holman Press), Joy in Ministry (Baker Books), Preaching With Power (Baker) and Communicate With Power (Baker). From 1996 until 2000 he served as editor of the Abingdon Preaching Annual series. His email newsletter, PreachingNow, is read each week by more than 40,000 pastors and church leaders in the U.S. and around the world. He is founder and director of the National Conference on Preaching and the International Congress on Preaching, which has been held in 1997 at Westminster Chapel in London, 2002 at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and 2007at Cambridge. He has been a pastor and associate pastor, has served a number of churches as interim pastor, and speaks regularly for churches, colleges and conferences.

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