There was this TPM minister in our assembly who was a great fan of the PA System. I would assume the hall to be around 3500 sq ft in area. So ideally the minister should be preaching to the pew inside the walls of the hall. Unfortunately, before the preaching starts, many ladies would pull out their kids and get out of the hall to minimize the impact of the screaming through the microphone. Many of these ladies would complain that their heart would palpitate due to the excessively loud sound from the speakers. The neighbors would often complain about this noise from the Holy Man of TPM. But he thinks that the neighbors are fighting against God. After every police visit, you can hear the sob story through the same microphone accusing the neighbors of persecuting the Children of God.
Love your neighbor as yourself
The above is not an isolated incident in TPM. This is the case of many TPM Faith Homes. Too often TPM pastors go insane while preaching. They are not in a position to speak anything, if they cannot see the microphone before his mouth. They shout unnecessarily, especially when they brag about their consecration. They will yell until the sound crosses deafening decibels. The problem is not that they shout, but that they scream and shout in spite of having a loudspeaker and an amplifier. This is double trouble. It pesters people residing in the neighborhood of faith homes. It is even annoying for people in the pew. Is this the kind of worship which God wants, – that which becomes a nuisance to people living around? Are we as a church, a cause of trouble and pain to the world or a source of relief and joy?
Once on the Sabbath day, Jesus healed a man with a withered hand. Religious fanatics were waiting to see whether Jesus would heal the man on the Sabbath, that they might accuse him. You know what Jesus did? He looked with anger to these religious freaks because they were so devoid of love and sympathy that they thought that it is better to let the man suffer in pain instead of breaking their religious man-made law and letting him get healed (See Mark 3). They never understood what Jesus meant when he taught them “Love the Lord thy God with all your being and Love thy neighbor as thyself.” They never understood that the sum of all laws (on which all the laws hang) was loving our neighbors and caring for them. They never understood the parable of Good Samaritan. Care and love of neighbors are better than singing Lord, Lord (Matt 7:21-23). This is applicable to Pharisees of TPM as well. The Pharisees of TPM shout and scream thrice a week and even at night time of month ending prayers. They are not a bit worried that their shouting might be trouble for people around them. These TPM pastors are without love and care for neighbors. They believe in saying Lord, Lord in loudspeakers but are not an iota careful that their behavior might annoy someone.
A yelling sermon is an annoying thing for people living in the neighborhood of churches. We should take care that our religiosity ought not to be a cause of trouble for others. It is the worst thing you can do to distance a person from Christ. Would you like a Muslim or a Hindu group screaming through the microphones into your bedrooms? Follow the Golden Rule. And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise. Luke 6:31
Why do these uncaring, unloving religious nuts yell from the pulpit?
Have you ever wondered why all of them bawl so much? I think that their philosophy is that good preaching means shouting too much. Even believers are conditioned to think that a fiery preacher means one who shouts frequently during a sermon. If shouting is preaching and you are attracted by shouting then I think this kid is on his way to becoming a top-notch convention preacher for TPM.
It is indeed true that loud voice is one of the skills of a good orator. But what does the bible say? Solomon says The words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry of him that ruleth among fools. (Ecc 9:17). Apostle Paul says “Brethren I came to you, not with EXCELLENCY OF SPEECH (oratory skills)…. My preaching was not with enticing words… (1 Cor 2:1,4)” What Paul is saying is that he did not use oratory skills (Excellency of speech) to win hearts (entice people). For his letters, say they, are weighty and powerful; but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible. 2 Cor 10:10
So why do TPM preachers yell? They want their sermons to be praised by their audience. They want to display their oratory skills. They desire to be called a fiery preacher. And in this passion to be praised they yell atop of their lungs. How did Jesus preach? Bible says, “He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street (Isaiah 42:2, Matt 12:16-20).” Jesus didn’t preach to be called of people as fiery orator! He didn’t work for his name. But these white-clad monks want to draw men after themselves (Acts 20:30). They bawl to boast their consecration. Alluring, attracting people by the art of shouting, emotionalizing and using instruments of public speaking is “alluring through lust of the flesh” Therefore Peter said “..they speak great swelling words, they “allure through lust of the flesh” (2 Pet 2:18).”
Jesus did not shout to be heard in street. Paul did not use oratory skills. Peter criticized usage of instruments of flesh to attract people. Solomon said words of wise men in quietness are more effective than shout among fools. Yet TPM preachers desire to be called the fiery preacher. Let them stop this kind of tricks.
Freaking out the devil with a loud voice?
At the end of the sermon, the TPM pastor usually shouts “Halle……………..luiah” atop of his lungs. Believers will then repeat “Halle……………..luiah.” This they will do four-five times. I often wonder whether they understand the meaning of word halleluiah? “Hallel” means praise and “yah” is from Yahweh. So, Halleluiah means praise be to name of Jehovah (Yahweh). I believe that desire to applaud our God must arise from deep within of our souls. It has to be a spontaneous expression arising out of an emotional feeling of joy. It must not be mechanical. It is not mere show. It is not lip service. Such mechanical dead shout can be termed as “praising God with lips when the heart is far away.” When I asked pastor why does he scream halleluiah so loudly,” then he said the more you shout, the more the devil gets fearful. He continued “Enemy fears our praising of God!” “Ah,” I said, “Interesting!” I want my readers to turn 1 Samuel 4. Here we find Israelites shouted at top of their lungs when the ark of covenant came into their midst. They shouted it with so great a sound that earth rang (I Sam 4:5). But what happened in the end? Philistines smote Israelites so badly that every one of Israelites ran to his own tent.
Once a pastor preached a sermon on how shouting brings victory. He quoted from an incident from the life of Jehoshaphat. He quoted II Chronicles 20:21 that when people began shouting praises to the holiness of God, then God defeated Moabites and Ammonites. I completely disagree with his deductions. These TPM preachers have a tendency to read in between passages instead of taking the whole passage. If you read the verses above, you will find that Jehoshaphat confessed that he had no strength or power or righteousness or holiness in him. He said “we have no might against this great company that cometh against us; neither know we what to do: but our eyes are upon thee (II Chronicles 20:12). So you see that it was not the shout of praise or loudness of voice or any holiness which was the reason for victory, but it was humility, confession and complete faith in the power of God that brought victory. Do you remember the parable of Pharisee and publican? It was publican’s humility and confessions that he had no righteousness, no holiness, and no strength/power, which made God declare to him justified (Luke 18). He threw his trust from his own holiness and consecration and completely sought the righteousness of God. He was saved by faith. He had faith that though he was ungodly yet God is justifier of him who “worketh not” but believes in God to save him (Rom 4:5). Though he was sinner yet he was declared righteous. Same was the case with the thief on the cross. The Thief was a sinner and he trusted in Jesus completely. He was completely dependent, not on his self-holiness but on will and mercy of Jesus. Therefore he was promised paradise.
So coming to II Chronicles, it was not a loud noise or shout of holiness or an act of greasing God’s ego, but it the as the faith which brought them victory over Moabites and ammonites. TPM pastors have this weird tendency to twist meanings of scriptures, to show that their shouting has the power to defeat enemies. Therefore, they yell and scream.
Another time a pastor gave a childish reason to support their erroneous belief that shouting loudly in praise of God, gives you victory over the devil. He cited the capture of Jericho. He said when people blew trumpets with loud praise, the walls of Jericho fell. Again I say that this is not what the bible says. The walls did not fell (they were not victorious over the enemy) because of loudness of their yelling! It was because of their faith. It was symbolic of victory over devil by denying self-righteousness/holiness/consecration and completely relying on/ trusting/having faith in righteousness of God (Rom 4:5). Therefore bible says “by faith walls of Jericho fell down (Heb 11:30).” Victory does not come from our belief in God as miracle performer, but by our belief in God as one who can make us escape final judgment without us having done any works [imputed righteousness]. It is being victorious by works done by Jesus on the cross and not by our praising or shouting Halleluiahs.
From 1 Samuel 4, we see that loudness of praises unto God, cannot help us defeat the enemy of our soul. Again Joshua’s conquest of Jericho and Jehoshaphat’s victory over Moabites and ammonites was not because of their loudness of praising God. Rather Joshua and Jehoshaphat emerged victorious over enemies because of their faith. Faith in God as their only hope of redemption and escape from annihilation! However twisted theology of TPM will lead you into error.
Continuous exposure to loud noise has many harmful effects on our bodies which takes its toll over a period of time. We may not find attending TPM meetings so very harmful initially. But over a period of time quality of your life will get reduced. Observe for yourself how relaxing it is to return to our homes after attending Sunday meetings in TPM church. Below are some harmful effects of regularly participating in the tumultuous world of TPM.
- Exposure to loud noise makes you mentally dumb. It disables your thinking capacity to reason out. No wonder we have so many blind devotes of TPM demigods.
- One might get migraines. May cause sleeping disorder in many.
- Gets you into hypertension, aggressive behavior, and anger (effects don’t manifest immediately but over a long time).
Final words: Dear brothers and sisters, are we saying we must not shout aloud the praises of our God? No! We aren’t saying that! Psalmist says “let they saints shout for joy (Psalm 132:9).” What we are saying is to make sure our rejoicing is not to be a cause of annoyance to someone else or source of trouble to people who live nearby. Words of wise men are heard in quiet more than the cry of them that rules among fools. A balanced view is as below.
|Shouting acceptable||Shouting unacceptable|
|For Believers: Shouting praise of God when you actually feel the joy uncontrollable (Example: Psalms 132:9). It is a spontaneous expression of joy.||For Believers: Let it not be mere lip service and mechanical, just because the pastor has asked you to shout. Your shouting or loudness has no power. “It is not the praying sheep Satan fears but the presence of the Shepherd.” (Click to read this wonderful article by A.W.Tozer here).|
|For Preacher: an Occasional passionate outburst of emotion is acceptable.|
|For Preacher: Trying to attract people by trying to be fiery is wrong. One needs to attract sheep to Jesus, not to ourselves. One must trust in the power of Holy Spirit and not in power of your throat or oratory skills.|
|For Preacher: When crowd needs a loud voice because the ones sitting in last lines cannot hear. But care should be taken that sound is enough and not more for people sitting in the enclosure.|
|For Preacher: When you have a small group of 100 people and you still megaphone loudspeakers to make sound reach 100m from the pulpit, then it is foolishness and rudeness. Why do you trouble people living beside faith home?|