We have arranged with Brother Correia for a series of descriptions of evangelistic visual aids which he has, under counsel, made of three-ply fire wood, and which for convenience we will denominate "cutouts." These have been tried out and proved effective, and cover a diversified range of devices so as to avoid the monotony of sameness. At the same time dignity is blended with freshness of designand approach.—EDITOR.
Ministers of this movement are messengers of a mighty message. Maximum efficiency in the cause of Christ is our major objective. To improve at every opportunity should challenge the best that is in us. Those who are anxious to make the truth interesting and attractive have found visual aids to be of great help in augmenting their preaching.
One progressive evangelist, W. W. Simpson, over a third of a century ago used his ingenuity in providing life-size representations of the prophetic beasts, and Mrs. White wrote the following commendation of him: "I am pleased with the manner in which our brother has used his ingenuity and tact in providing suitable illustrations for the subjects presented—representations that have a convincing power. Such methods will be used more and more in this closing work."—E. G. WHITE MS. 105, 1906. (Italics mine.)
It requires careful study to discover an appropriate illustration to enhance the effectiveness of the spoken word. Often an evangelist can think of a proper device as a visual interpretation of some special item. At times he might find it profitable to consult one of the several sources containing suitable suggestions for illustrative material. Advertisements and special layouts in newspapers, 'magazines, billboards, signs, books, etc., often contain many usable ideas. For instance, The Sabbath School Worker has featured excellent cartoons for some years. Such items can often be adapted to advantage for practical use in the creation and construction of evangelistic charts and cutout symbols.
The prophecy of the twenty-three hundred days is one of the most important in the Bible. It is not only the longest but also one of the most intricate prophecies to portray before our hearers. With mathematical precision it reaches across the centuries, touching many great events at vital points. One of its chief functions is, of course, to provide the prophetic setting for the judgment phase of the advent message, which we are commissioned to give. Such an important prophecy needs the best possible visual illustration, or interpretation. There is need of a chart or device large enough to command the attention of sizable audiences—a chart made in a representative manner, its various features presented progressively and with maximum appeal.
Progressive Build-up for 2300-Year Prophecy
One way to meet that need is to construct a chart composed of standards with placards, and cords, as' here pictured. The standards are like signposts, giving the dates, and are tied together with colored cords which can be adapted to the length of any platform.
As to the mechanics of this device, the disks are made of three-ply, one-fourth-inch fir, cut in circular form with a coping saw. These disks are bolted with wing nuts to a three-fourths-inch round standard or upright, which is about three feet long. The lettering is four inches high—large enough to be easily read by a sizable audience. The disks are painted with flat white, and the lettering is a deep blue. The flat paint eliminates the glare of the footlights or spots. The blue band on the edges provides maximum contrast against any and all backgrounds.
The round standards are anchored in the substantial bases made of wood blocks twelve inches square and two inches thick. They fit snugly into the hole in the center of the base, but can be easily removed. To be ideal, it may be added, all evangelistic equipment should be made collapsible for, shipping purposes.
The bases and the round uprights can be stained medium oak in color. The colored cords represent the various time periods; consequently, each period may have a different color of cord. Hooks may be taped to the ends of each segment of cord.
These can be inserted easily into large screw eyes located on the uprights. Care should be taken to see that the diameter of the cords is large enough to balance with the standards, and of proper color to be seen against the background.
When the equipment for display is being set up, the entire device should first be put together, and then properly spaced and chalked on the floor. The bases can be secured to the platform by means of a nail in each base. Then the superstructure should be taken off and the various pieces placed where they can be picked up conveniently and quickly. The ideal technique is for the evangelist to operate the chart himself, describing the various events as they are exhibited progressively. For added effect, stereopticon pictures can be flashed on the screen, placed diagonally at the corner of the platform so that it will synchronize with the placement of the standards. Another possible feature would be to have the cross on the A.D. 31 standard illuminated at the proper time.
It is always a safe policy to practice the assemblage of such an important display before the actual presentation, so that all the various operations will work smoothly and without confusion or delay. Another precaution is to check the lighting provisions on the, platform to see that maximum effect is achieved. Many who have seen or used such visual aids to augment the spoken word have found them most practical and helpful.
The progressive development here provided is the ideal. The element of surprise and expectancy is of greatest value. The subject can easily be reviewed with a chart on which all features appear. Or, if desired, it can be used for the seventy weeks alone.