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Should We Preach Like a TED Talk?

Strive to be memorable, but let God and his Word change lives.

Should We Preach Like a TED Talk?
Image: Michael Buckner/Getty Images

TED talks have become quite a phenomenon. There are now thousands of short talks by world experts available on the TED website, and because so many of them are captivating and memorable, people are asking "How can I speak as persuasively as a TED speaker?" More specifically for preachers, we sometimes hear or ask: How can I preach like a TED speaker? Because if you see the tagline for TED talks—"Ideas worth spreading"—as a preacher you might think, We have the best idea worth spreading that there is! And you're right. Then we think of the attractiveness and audience pulling power of a TED speaker, and we begin to dream.

But for preachers, there will always be a prior question: "Should I even try to speak as persuasively as a TED speaker?" Because at the back of our minds is, or should be, Paul's devastating critique of rhetoric in 2 Corinthians, which although it is arguably the most rhetorically sophisticated of his letters, is stinging ...

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