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Mind Reader

An interview with Richard Cox

When was the last time you thought of how your sermons were received at the neurological level? Richard Cox, a pastor and psychologist, thinks about it all the time. He's the author of Rewiring Your Preaching: How the Brain Processes Sermons (IVP, 2012).

Why write a book about preaching and neurology?

As a preacher, you have to ask, "How will my teaching methods influence what someone will or won't believe? How will they deal with what I'm trying to teach them?" In order to answer those questions, you can't just look at one piece of the puzzle. Saying that our sermon prep should only focus on a person's soul is like training an athlete and only focusing on his motivation. That obviously won't work. You've got to say, "Yes, I need to develop his motivation, but I also have to pay attention to his posture, breathing, timing, musculature, nutrition, and mental state." The brain is an important aspect of sermon reception. Why not learn more about it?

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