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Pulpit Plagiarism

In fact, it is as difficult to appropriate the thoughts of others as it is to invent.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Though old the thought
and oft exprest
'Tis his at last
who says it best.
James Russell Lowell
A significant part of preaching to convince is the skill of making a sermon breathe life through illustrations. Paul borrowed from philosophers and prophets; Jesus drew heavily from the Old Testament writers. Some were credited and others not. How's a preacher to know where to plant the verbal footnote? And what's fair game to steal — credited or not?Preachers are rightfully wary of signing their name on another's illustration. No preacher wants to appear phony or unoriginal when worshipers recognize an unnamed source.Jamie Buckingham, senior minister of Tabernacle Church in Melbourne, Florida, knows the value of the appropriated thought in his preaching and writing. He has also wrestled with the subtle distinction between a pirate and a parrot, between larceny and license.The following chapter ...
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