Five dangerous ways to use the pulpit

Nothing is more important to God than the souls of men (John 3:16). For God’s people, bringing the lost to Christ is the noblest task we can ever perform (Matthew 28:18-20).

When Moses encountered God in the burning bush, he was told:

“Do not draw near this place. Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground” (Exodus 3:5, NKJV).

The proclamation of the gospel is sacred work (Romans 10:14-15). We must exhibit fear and respect when we utter the greatest words ever written (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

We do not own any of the Lord’s Words, and we must possess great humility when we share them because God is watching (Psalm 139:7-12). When we teach or preach the Gospel, we must blend into the background, allowing God to speak clearly through the Scriptures.

The sacred nature of the Gospel means that we must never forget the importance and sacred nature of the Bible.

As a result, the pulpit should never be used to:

  • Promote our personal aspirations.

When we proclaim the gospel, we cease to exist except to deliver the message. Preaching is never about us. The pulpit should never be used to advance our career or name. For every inch of our ego that takes the stage, Christ is diminished.

  • Promote our political agenda.

Politics and Christianity rarely ever mix. We must use the Scriptures to refute error but when we move outside of God’s Word and move to politicians and political beliefs, we are awash in danger. In that respect, politics has no place in the pulpit, much less our own beliefs. When we try to project Jesus onto our political agenda, we are courting blasphemy.

  • Promote our ideas.

We are to preach the Word and nothing else (2 Timothy 4:2). When we begin spouting our own beliefs, theories and pet peeves, we have thrown Christ aside and begun preaching ourselves and we may open the door to Satan (1 Peter 5:8).

  • Sort out our own problems.

If we need counseling, we can find help in many places. But preaching is not a glorified form of self-exploration or self-medication.

  • Settle scores.

The pulpit should never be used to take potshots at the brethren or to force brethren to join our army so we can go to war against our enemies. When we lose our focus and mount the bully pulpit, we can destroy the veracity and credibility of the Lord. God is not mocked, and we will pay a severe price for our sin.

God deserves fear, reverence, respect and awe. All Christians must exhibit these qualities at all times. When we complain that the world does not respect Christ, do we ever ask whether we might be contributing to their misconceptions?

20 thoughts on “Five dangerous ways to use the pulpit

    1. The pulpit has to honored as a true and sincere platform for God’s, Jesus our Savior and the Holy Spirit. The pulpit of leaders have gotten to comfortable by. Leaning to their own understanding and forgetting the principles of God commands. The pulpit speak of moral and positive leadership. For a dollar and claim to fame,we have laid aside the spirit that lead many to the pulpit or house of worship. It is long pass due for us to embrace God’s directions and reestablish a foundation that draw all men,women and children back to God’s words of love. As work in God’s ways we shall avoid the corruptions that can destroy his creations. Let us put on the total arm of the Lord and do the work that both pleasing and holy in his vast land of love and blessings

    1. Thank you!! Ben, I thought of you when I was making the list. You are the list-maker. 🙂

  1. I agree with most of these points. But I have a sincere and genuine question that I’ve been wrestling with.. Is it “Promoting a political agenda” if our political views are a natural production of our faith and understanding of truths, and therefore need to be preached?

    If socialistic democracy is legalized theft by majority vote, then shouldn’t Christians be made informed of that by preaching? If the monetary system and National Central Banking system is built on fraudulent fractional reserve banking and a fiat currency and breaks God’s commands for just weights and measures and honest transactions, why should this not be preached against? If a particular war is legalizing murder with a flag wrapped around it (whether the murderer be on one team, the other, or both), should this not be preached against? If people believe state endorsed/legalized divorce or legalized homosexual ‘marriage’ legitimizes those things before God, is it political to preach on these “political issues?”

    I’m very interested in someone’s take, because I honestly think Christian’s ought to be able to follow the implications and draw political conclusions that flow from the Gospel, but the most appropriate manner to develop that is still something I’m not sure about.

    1. Daniel, thanks for your questions. To me, there is a big difference in using God’s Word to combat sin and making political statements. We can and must use God’s Word to speak out against evil and sin. But when we start talking political parties and political statements, we have moved outside of God’s Word and we are in murky waters.

      1. What about all of God’s prophets who spoke against all of the evil being performed by the nations and governments around? Religious beliefs flow directly into politics. We can’t act like our Christianity is separate from politics, because for the most part, it isn’t. I just think there is something wrong when we write off speaking on political issues. Every preacher of God throughout time spoke on the issues affecting that culture. When our politicians are corrupt to the point of destruction, we have to speak on these things. Especially when our audience is supporting some of them!

        1. I never said you couldn’t address the issues of the day from God’s Word. We have a requirement to do so. I’m not saying what you think I am saying.

        2. On Facebook, I see Christians posting political things all day. Many of them are completely false and ridiculous. We can quickly lose focus and cause the world to see us as political rather than spiritual. Instead, when we remain focused on issues rather than personalities and use Scripture for everything, we are doing what God wants us to do. If you don’t like the President, use Scripture alone to speak against his policies.

      2. I appreciate your response. I suppose the line should be between preaching about the root issues and preaching about the people. I think a real danger occurs when we try to tie positions to whole groups of people (and therefore are preaching against people, whom we ought to love), when it’s very rare that the group itself actually supports certain positions rather than some vocal or prominent members in certain groups.

        1. Thank you. On Facebook, I see Christians posting political things all day. Many of them are completely false and ridiculous. We can quickly lose focus and cause the world to see us as political rather than spiritual. Instead, when we remain focused on issues rather than personalities and use Scripture for everything, we are doing what God wants us to do. If you don’t like the President, use Scripture alone to speak against his policies.

  2. I saw the pulpit used to “settle a score” one time. The results were tragic until a Christ-like attitude prevailed. Excellent article Richard!

  3. Great article. I agree with just about everything you said, except that “politics and Christianity rarely ever mix.” The big political issues right now deal with abortion (exodus 20:13, Psalm 127:3), and homosexual marriage (1 Corinthians 6:9). And there are so many other areas where politics cross over into religion. If somebody supports a party line that is involved in these areas, are they not also supporting them indirectly? I don’t think bringing a specific party candidate into the pulpit is right, but it is right (for example) to preach against the mass of Christians who voted for an evil man simply because of his color.

  4. Richard, Some brethren would consider preaching against abortion or homosexuality etc. as “preaching politics” especially if they are supportive of those who support such things. Without explaining a tad, they could think you have their bac

    1. I would call it preaching against sin. We MUST preach against homosexuality and abortion. I do. Thanks for your comment.

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