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The Power of Repetition

By Zac Poonen

‘Deuteronomy’ means ‘a second law.’ This is because there is a repetition here of many important aspects of the law. There is also a repetition of many matters that were already written in the earlier books of Moses.

We should not be disturbed by repetition. Repetition is necessary for us to be gripped by the truth. That is why God has repeated many things in His Word.

The history of the kings of Judah are mentioned twice – first in the two books of Kings and again in the two books of Chronicles.

Why does the New Testament open with four biographies of Christ and not just one? There is a lot of repetition in the four gospels. Some matters are mentioned four times – in the four gospels. There must be a very good reason for that.

Many things are repeated in the letter to the Colossians which were already mentioned in Ephesians. What we can learn from this is that the apostles were not ashamed to repeat themselves.

Some preachers are afraid to repeat a sermon on the same subject lest they lose their reputation before the people. They are more concerned about what people think about them than about those people’s need.

I heard of an evangelist who conducted seven days meetings in a town and preached every day on the subject: “You must be born again.” An unconverted man who attended all the meetings got tired of hearing the same theme on all seven days and asked him why he preached every day on, “You must be born again“? The evangelist replied, “Because you must be born again.” That’s the answer. The message had to be repeated until the man was born again. He does not need to hear something else. The patient has to take the same antibiotic until he is cured!

Now if you were to ask me why I keep on saying, “You must get victory over sin“, I hope you know the answer: “Because you must get victory over sin.

The Old Testament prophets repeated the same message again and again because Israel needed to hear what God was saying clearly. Jeremiah preached virtually the same message for more than 40 years, until he almost got tired of preaching it. But many a time, people need to hear something ten times before the truth sinks in. So we should never be ashamed of preaching on the same subject again and again to the same audience. If we are anointed, the message will still be fresh each time we preach it.

If we seek the honour of people, we will not repeat. But if we seek their good, we will repeat it until they have understood it.

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