[OPINION] Why Pulpits Have Been Shifted To An Unknown Destination.
I read with the utmost disdain and heightened apprehension of worrisome remarks of some believers and multitudes crying to God for a sooner cleansing of the pulpits.
By the series of calls over attitudes exhibited by of some men behind the pulpits, nobody though permitted to judge others, however, as nature would have it, it would be proper to critically measure this by what they preach.
This keeps giving me speedy gulping of water to quench the surging disbelieve of how the pulpits have been enmeshed in a series of wanton pleasure concordance.
The chapel of the seminary that most preachers attended years ago which had a high pulpit have been lowered to disreputes
Years ago, the pulpit of truth, dominated the whole chapel. It was in the centre at the front of the sanctuary and you had to climb several stairs of faith to get up to the apex to preach.
Once you’re a preacher by integrity Providence, you are seen and respected like “Earthly God”.
This pulpit of the then honour is towered over the congregation which inconsonant, gave the sheep the senses of direction to crave as well, more of it.
I learned that this type of pulpit was patterned after churches of long ago during Reformation and Puritan times where the preaching of the Word of God was central and supreme.
I had the privilege as a student in my hay days to see preaching in that pulpit a couple of times.
After climbing the steps and finally getting into the pulpit, the preacher would look down and first of all see a large pulpit Bible open before him and then he would see a small gold plate visible only to the preacher which had engraved on it these words – “Sir, we would see Jesus”, When the preacher saw those words, he would know what he was in that pulpit for.
It was to proclaim the Word of God and show Jesus to the people.
The listeners acted like, “Men brought back from the dead”.
Today, powerful preaching of the Word of God has mostly been replaced by friendly talks from the stage.
Today’s friendly talks fall far short of the powerful preaching that occurred in the pulpits of the Reformers and others who saw the Bible as the very Word of God.
John Knox preached a famous sermon on November 8, 1559, from Psalm 180.
Iain Murray in his book A Scottish Christian Heritage writes, “For years to come men spoke of the effect of that one sermon.
As I was sitting in the chapel of a local seminary where a congregation was meeting temporarily, I noticed the pulpit had been moved to a far corner.
The stage where the pulpit had probably once stood in the centre was cleared.
The musicians had taken over the stage and when it came time to preach, the minister used a small music stand to put his Bible and notes on.
So many evangelical churches today, have put the pulpit aside and cleared off the stage. Many preachers do not even use a lectern any more.
They just walk around on the stage to give their message to the people.
But could this be an indication of the value that modern evangelical churches put on the Word of God?
Where is the powerful preaching of the Word of God that was heard by generations of the past? It seems that that kind of preaching has largely faded away.
Most evangelical preachers today seem to give talks to their congregations rather than powerful sermons from the Bible.
Of course, there are exceptions to this, but this seems to be the fare in most modern evangelical churches.
The great revivals of the past have been accompanied by the powerful preaching of the Word of God. For a thousand years, the gospel had been veiled.
But today, superstition and idolatry had crept into the church living believers wailing without clear cut direction.
The Bible had been taken away from the people and preachers taught the traditions of men.
Notably, in my concerted research, I have spotted that the Preaching of prosperity by most pastors which have of course taken over the stage is a major factor for this spontaneous act of immorality.
Although prosperity is good, however, when you are jobless and not ready to engage in quality services, it doesn’t change anything.
Most pastors nowadays assume the role of God Almighty without detailed studies and research of what to preach.
Lord have mercy!
They are entrenched in flamboyancy and now stuck in an unholy life which have taken the real purpose of the doctrine far too way-off the sanctity mark.
Too many accusations of infidelity have taken larger Chunk of their day to day way of life.
We are well aware of what the scriptures say about passing judgment on those Manning the pulpit. But how long can we continue to close our eyes for this to continue?
As far as I condemn open criticism of men of God, I will not condemn reasonable suggestions to abate their excesses.
Like you know, they are human and prompt to mistakes. Only God is infallible. Nobody can play God.
You can’t expect a lost soul who is looking up to you as a pastor and role model to hear the man is involved in unholy conjugation.
Where have all the pulpits gone? Maybe we better say, “Where has the powerful preaching of the Word of God gone?” There is a dearth in the land. We need to pray that God would once again restore the powerful preaching of the Reformers and those who followed them of the same spirit.
Remember, John Owen in 1674, when there was a decline in powerful preaching in Britain, looked back to an earlier time when great preaching had been common in the land.
He writes, “They had a useful and fruitful ministry in the world, to the converting of many to God.
But we have lived to see all these things decried and rejected…all conviction, sense of and sorrow for sin; all fear of the curse and wrath due unto sin; all troubles and distresses of mind on account of these things, – are ‘foolish imaginations, the effects of bodily distempers, enthusiastic notions, arising from the disorders of men’s brains’… and the whole doctrine concerning these things is branded as a novelty, and hopes expressed of its sudden vanishing out of the world.” (taken from The Old Evangelicalism p. 25) Yet, suddenly, the great preaching came back within seventy years of John Owen’s writing these words.
It came back in the Great Evangelical Revival through the preaching of George Whitefield, John and Charles Wesley and others.
God sent a great revival that changed England and brought back the preaching of the Word of God in the spirit of the Reformers.
Today, we must not give up. It is still possible that the pulpits can come back and that great convicting preaching can return.
It may be that God will once again raise up preachers who will cry with Jeremiah saying, “Then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his name.
But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay.” (Jeremiah 20:9 KJV) We must pray to that end!
Then suddenly in the 16thcentury the Reformers came on the scene, dusted off the Bible and began to proclaim it with great power and the whole world was changed.
Iain Murray writes that the Word of God is like a trumpet to awaken the people. He says, “Reveille, the morning hour of wakening in the army, is announced by a bugle.
When times of awakening occur in the church, the preaching of the Word serves that same function.
Christians, non-Christians, followers and the society at large, are hopeful of a radical change in the shifted pulpits to trust and see more robust preaching that encompasses the belief in the pulpit by those saddled with such responsibilities.