What I love about NT studies (and what is true here is perhaps true
of any academic discourse) is way in which meticulously detailed study
of the texts, using all of the technical skills that one possesses,
many years of hard work, the full range of scholarly resources – all
this can result in the ability to say things in a relatively simple and
straightforward way, such that people who have not studied the texts in
the same detail can nonetheless grasp the issues and understand the
implications of what one has said. Much of my teaching is a
combination of (a) saying a few things simply, in such a way that the
group can understand what I am claiming and why it is important and (b)
showing how those few simple statements are in fact rooted in detailed
work with the primary and secondary sources. Whether I succeed is a
moot point. But as an illustration consider these two posts on the
Synoptic Problem. One is written by Brandon Wason, and gives detailed
information on the way that Luke has used Mark.
The second is by Mark Goodacre (who like one of his mentors, Michael
Goulder, seems to hold much of this kind of detailed information in his
head) describing the Synoptic Problem in 8 Easy Steps.
I think that good preaching combines these two elements. I often think
that those who know the most and have worked the hardest, preach the
simplest. Complicated preaching is often the result of inadequate
understanding and/or preparation.