Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Awefulness & Awesomeness of Ascending to the Pulpit
Geoffrey R. Kirkland
Christ Fellowship Bible Church

Nothing has as much power as when the voice of God speaks.  When God utters a word, His plan most certainly comes to pass and everything obeys His sovereign decree. So then, it only follows that as a man of God ascends the stairs to preach in the pulpit and speak as the mouthpiece of God, he does well to have some truths plastered on his heart and mind.

Paul wrote that he knew the terror of the Lord. It is the fear of the Lord that is the beginning of wisdom. Knowing God and His person and work must produce a deep-rooted and an awe-struck amazement at the majesty of God. God speaks through instruments. God spoke through prophets of old. God has revealed Himself generally through creation. God has provided His sufficient Word in the pages of written Scripture. And in so far as the man of God takes the Word of God to declare God’s truth to the people of God, he speaks for God. The preacher must remember the fear of the Lord.

The Word of the Lord is tested, true, and refined. God cannot lie nor does His Word ever fail. God’s Word has stood the test of time as the only reliable, verifiable, infallible, and supernatural Word. A false teacher was exposed because of his false prophecies. A true man of God was known to be true because the word which he spoke came true. A man who preaches the Bible must humbly bow before the holiness of God and beg God to cleanse his lips before he would endeavor to herald for God.

God sent a lion to kill a prophet who disobeyed the clear Word of God. God struck down two priests for conducting their priestly duties in a way that God had not ordained. God’s power is unrivaled, supreme and fearful. The man of God with the Word of God in hand must realize that he unquestionably wields the most powerful weapon in existence—the powerful Word of God. The man must humbly bow before God’s power because God promises that all false teachers will necessarily meet their end. May God’s power infuse God’s man with humility.

To ascend to a pulpit, open the Bible, and say ‘Thus says the LORD’ should be the most sober, serious, and solemn moments of the week. The preacher speaking for God is speaking to God’s people. How remarkable is the thought that God entrusts His blood-bought prized possessions to his undershepherds. God’s man who teaches the Word must feed God’s sheep with good, healthy, solid, mature food. God’s man must care for God’s sheep that are wounded, hurting, dying, and straying. What an honor and privilege to tend to and love the people Christ purchased.

The preacher must preeminently be a holy man. God chooses to not use impure vessels for His glory and for the advancement of His gospel. All Christians must be holy since God is holy. How much more the man who speaks for God, with God’s Word, to God’s people, with God’s gospel! He must turn from sin and passionately hate it. He must mortify sin and carefully extract it and slay it from its inception. He must serve Christ, love Christ, worship Christ, and commune with Christ. The man who ascends to the pulpit to preach must have no ongoing sin in his life. He must not live in or remain in any known sin. He must murder sin because He treasures Christ so much more! He must meet with the living God, speak with the living God, hear from the living God, and speak for the living God. Preeminently, he must be holy in his heart, in his mind, with his life and only then may he speak for the Lord.

Download the pdf article here.
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