The Lord spoke to me recently about something I did not expect – a new pulpit. This caught me off guard, because my focus has been on many other things, and I have to admit that a new pulpit was not high on my list of priorities. However, when God speaks I listen, and He led me to a few scriptures, as seen below:

Then Samuel took a flask of olive oil and poured it on Saul’s head and kissed him, saying, “Has not the Lord anointed you ruler over his inheritance? – 1 Samuel 10:1

The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and be on your way; I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem. I have chosen one of his sons to be king.” – 1 Samuel 16:1

The Lord showed me the difference in how Samuel anointed Saul in contrast to David. In the case of Saul, Samuel took a man-made flask of oil to anoint Saul, whereas in David’s case, Samuel used a horn to anoint David oil. The horn was a creation of God. God was showing me that the man-made vessel reflected the decision of man’s own desire to choose for himself a king, Saul, whereas the God-made horn was used to anoint God’s elected king, David. God’s way is always the best way!

I understood that our new pulpit was to reflect God’s providence through the symbolism of the olive tree, and thus I commissioned one of our local carpenters in Nazareth to create a beautiful new pulpit for us from an olive tree. The olive tree is so often used by God as a symbol of His works and intervention on earth. In regards to the church, the olive tree is a powerful representation of God’s involvement in the lives of His children.

The olive tree is very tough and can survive for centuries through extremely difficult circumstances, and serves as a reminder to us that God protects His church, and that through His power, the church will overcome any obstacles and threats that it may face.

Furthermore we see that the olive tree produces olives which are amazingly useful fruit, with many uses to preserve, to heal, as well to add fragrance and taste. In the same way the church produces its own fruit, among which are those who are saved and discipled to go and spread the knowledge of Christ in all places.

In the same way that the olive tree is evergreen, and retains its healthy and vibrant color all year round, the church remains evergreen as the Holy Spirit infuses it with God’s presence and power.

Another very powerful analogy we see, especially here in Israel, is the olive tree as the One New Man in Christ, Jew and Gentile, united in Christ. The Jewish people are the original olive tree, and we as the nations, and in our case as Arabs, have been grafted in by faith in Jesus as fellow heirs of the Kingdom of God.

Hallelujah! In hindsight I realize how wise and pertinent the decision of God was when He led us to have a new pulpit created from an olive tree. This new pulpit will speak to people about the many aspects of the God’s providence and His Kingdom dynamics, and will serve as a powerful testimony of God’s presence in the life of His church. Amen!