Further Pulpit Points

June 17, 2009

A few responses and clarifications in light of the comments.

  • Again, I don’t think pulpits are biblically mandated, and actually agree with one commenter that “the only purpose it should serve is for the preacher to place his notes and bible somewhere to save him holding them.”
  • I agree too that if there is a pulpit, “it’s more important that the bible is visible than the pulpit.” I also recognise that the bible may not be central even when the pulpit is.
  • I didn’t say that “removing the pulpit is tantamount to removing the bible”, but I did ask the question: “will the bible remain central if the pulpit isn’t?” In some cases the answer will be yes, as in the instance of one commenter’s pastor who holds his bible in hand and continues to refer to it. But in other cases, the answer will be no: the removal of the pulpit will be the natural architectural adjustment, given the prior demise of the preached Word in a certain congregation.
  • I think the communion table should be central too, as any good Reformed person would!:  “…where the Word is truly preached and the sacraments are rightly administered!”


  1. ‘The prominence given to the pulpit is idolatrous’: Discuss.

  2. Alex

    My tuppenceworth:

    I think in most cases historically the prominence of the pulpit has simply reflected the prominence churches have given to the Word of God. Its been the bible that has been revered more than the pulpit; and the pulpit because of the bible.

    Perhaps a lot of Christians post-Reformation were ‘biblio-laters’ (the best kind of idolatry?!), yet who could blame them after centuries of not having the Scriptures in their own language.

    That said, its certainly possible for people to idolise the preacher, which is a different thing. I don’t personally think that a prominent pulpit contributes greatly to that. I can think of many celebrity preachers who minus the pulpit still have ‘fan bases’ who idolise their preaching ministry.

    I suspect the issue is whether the man, in or out of the pulpit, shows himself as a man under the authority of the bible.

    Don’t you think?

  3. One all important question has been left off: Where will you hide all the stuff if your pulpit is too small or absentee (batteries, extra Bibles, hymnals, song books, lighters, microphones, just to name a few items bound to find their way under the abode of a pulpit)?

  4. […] Further Pulpit Points […]

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