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Don't Fear Repetition, Repetition

Clarity in preaching demands more than clear writing.

I was listening to a student preach. In a few minutes I would be leading some class interaction on the message. But I had a problem. I had no idea what he was talking about!

I had a copy of his outline, so I glanced at it. To my amazement, the student's outline was beautiful—a logical progression, with proper subordinations and overall unity. So why couldn't I follow his oral delivery?

That's when it hit me with force that a message that would be clear to a reader requires special skills and adjustments to make it clear for a hearer.

Consider the many built-in aids to clarity that occur in a manuscript that we lose when speaking.

1. The paragraph. When our eye sees a paragraph indention at the beginning of a line, our brain unconsciously tells us, "You are beginning a new thought." Our eyes catch some white space further down the page, and our brain says, "This new thought will last until you reach ...

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