preach

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Related to preached: preach to the converted

preach to deaf ears

To present arguments to or attempt to persuade or advise those who have no inclination to change their opinion or belief. You're preaching to deaf ears if you think you can convince these kids to stay away from alcohol before they turn 21. Even though they know they're preaching to deaf ears, the hate group makes a point of holding protests outside churches and the funerals of slain soldiers.
See also: deaf, ear, preach

preach to the choir

To try to convince someone about something that they already support; to state one's opinion to those who are already most receptive to it. You're preaching to the choir here—we all have kids and understand how busy life can get. Honestly, you're preaching to the choir, but I just don't have any money to donate.
See also: choir, preach

preach to the converted

To try to convince someone about something that they already support; to state one's opinion to those who are already most receptive to it. You're preaching to the converted here—we all have kids and understand how busy life can get. Honestly, you're preaching to the converted, but I just don't have any money to donate.
See also: convert, preach

practice what (one) preaches

To do the things or behave the way that one advises, dictates, or espouses. My parents always told us to respect each other and not to bicker, but they rarely practiced what they preached. If you're going to tell your employees not to incur excessive, unnecessary costs to the company, then you had better practice what you preach.
See also: practice, preach, what

be preaching to the converted

To be trying to convince someone about something that they already support or understand. You're preaching to the converted here—we all have kids and understand how busy life with kids is.
See also: convert, preach

Practice what you preach.

Prov. Cliché You yourself should do the things you advise other people to do. Dad always told us we should only watch an hour of television every day, but we all knew he didn't practice what he preached.
See also: practice, preach, what

preach about something

to give a moral or stern discourse on something. Please don't preach about the evils of fried food. I like the stuff, and people eat it all the time and don't die! She was preaching about the value of a fat-free diet.
See also: preach

preach against someone or something

to exhort against someone or something. The evangelist preached against the operator of the town's only saloon. The principal kept preaching against drinking and drugs.
See also: preach

preach at someone

to lecture or moralize at someone. Don't preach at me! I don't need any of your moralizing. I really don't wish to be preached at.
See also: preach

preach to someone

to give a moral discourse to someone. Please don't preach to me. I know that I did wrong. When you preach to us like that, we don't pay any attention to you.
See also: preach

preach to the choir

 and preach to the converted
Fig. to make one's case primarily to one's supporters; to make one's case only to those people who are present or who are already friendly to the issues. There is no need to convince us of the value of hard work. We already know that. You are just preaching to the choir. Don't waste your time telling us about the problem. That's preaching to the choir. Bob found himself preaching to the converted when he was telling Jane the advantages of living in the suburbs. She already hates city life.
See also: choir, preach

practice what you preach

Behave as you would have others behave, as in You keep telling us to clean up, but I wish you'd practice what you preach. This idiom expresses an ancient idea but appeared in this precise form only in 1678. Also see do as I say.
See also: practice, preach, what

preach to the converted

Try to convince someone who is already convinced, as in Why tell me smoking is bad when I gave it up years ago? You're preaching to the converted. [Mid-1800s]
See also: convert, preach

be preaching to the converted

If someone is preaching to the converted, they are presenting an opinion or argument to people who already agree with them. You're wasting your time preaching to the converted. In any case the film was, by and large, preaching to the converted. Note: The converted are people who have converted, or changed their religious beliefs. Preaching is the activity of telling people about a religion.
See also: convert, preach

practise what you preach

COMMON If you practise what you preach, you behave in the way that you encourage other people to behave. Note: The verb `practise' is spelled `practice' in American English. He practised what he preached, being more interested in moral values than money. I ought to be showing leadership and practise what I am preaching. Note: People sometimes vary this expression. The Bishop said the government had let the people down badly: it had preached love but practised hate.
See also: practise, preach, what

practise what you preach

do what you advise others to do.
See also: practise, preach, what

preach to the converted

advocate something to people who already share your convictions about its merits or importance.
See also: convert, preach

ˌpractise what you ˈpreach

(saying) live or act the way you advise others to live or act: He’s always telling me to go on a diet, but he doesn’t practise what he preaches. He needs to lose weight too!
See also: practise, preach, what

preach to the conˈverted

(American English also preach to the ˈchoir) tell people to support a view or an idea when they already support it: Why do they keep telling us about the importance of women in industry? They’re preaching to the converted here.
See also: convert, preach

preach to the

choir/converted
To argue in favor of a viewpoint already held by one's audience.
See also: preach
References in periodicals archive ?
I've learned a lot from the people who have preached and been pastors to me in Halifax.
I have always preached in the context of the sacrament.
As the novel's many snake images converge in this final mechanical worm, the deus ex machina cuts down the vine of the preacher who has never completely appropriated the texts on which he preached.
This is obviously so if someone's thinking and preaching are misguided: one surely wishes that the Nazis practiced less of what they preached.
When the Greater Los Angeles Crusade was announced in February, Graham said, "I feel somewhat like the Apostle Paul in wanting to go back to places where we have preached the Lord to see how they are doing.
21) When Jesus preached in Galilee, he declared, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe i n the good news" (Mark 1:15, NRSV).
People have the right to have the Gospel proclaimed and hear the word preached in a language they can understand," said Blenkush.
In his 55 years of ministry, Graham has preached in person to more than 210 million people.
The sermon he preached upon gaining the lordship of Genoa in 1318 is indicative.
But Robert preached on a wide variety of occasions and in a variety of settings: at diplomatic ceremonies, both at his own court and elsewhere; at the university of Naples, which operated under royal patronage as an arm of his royal government; at churches and religious houses, during royal visitations; and even at the papal court in Avignon.
Should the same sermon be preached to the same congregation more than once?
However, when she later read a transcript of what she had preached, she felt that the text "had been written in disappearing ink.
Yet I recall with regret stewardship sermons, that I both preached and heard, so intent on getting the congregation to increase their giving that Jesus was somewhere in the background.
In the second church, a deacon sat silent as the priest preached and was not understood.