Can we have a revival?
The Upward Look, by Jon Forrest
Can We Have a Revival?
Dr. J. Edwin Orr states, "I am convinced that more work for God could be done in six months of revival than in sixty years of any other kind of effort."
John R. Rice says, "God had an Elijah for Mount Carmel. He had a Jonah for Nineveh. The Lord Jesus Himself was the evangelist at Sychar in Samaria."
If you look at Scripture, both Old and New Testament passages, we find that preaching the Word of God was the predominant way that people were won to God’s will and plan. The prophets preached to the Israelites all the time. John the Baptist led numerous people to God through his preaching. Jesus preached everywhere he went. On the Day of Pentecost, when the Apostles launched the Lord’s church, they preached the good news (gospel) to the crowds with Peter leading the way and over 3,000 people surrendered their lives to Jesus Christ and were baptized that day. Peter, John, Philip, Stephen, Paul, Apollos and numerous others preached to people everywhere. The result was a thing we call Revival.
The Apostle Paul wrote several times about the value of preaching. Look at what he wrote in 1 Corinthians 1:21, For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe.
In Romans 10 Paul talks about how that faith comes when people hear the Word of God preached. Then he asks how they can hear without a preacher.
Certainly, preaching is not the only aspect of Revival, but it is crucial. Prayer is another essential element of Revival. In fact, one of the powerful elements of prayer is lifting up the preacher and for his preaching to be affective.
One powerful aspect of preaching is the personal one on one sharing of God’s Word with people we meet every day. In Acts 8, following the preacher, Stephen’s, stoning by the mob, great persecution broke out against the church in Jerusalem and many of the people scattered, leaving Jerusalem for safety. Verse 4 says, Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went.
We strive to follow New Testament examples and preaching is a huge part of the way God did things back then. This is why we have preaching every Sunday and why we have Revival Meetings with preaching. It is still a relevant method for sharing God’s heart and message with the multitudes. In fact, preaching is God’s anointed and approved method for getting the message of the gospel to the hearts of people.
Certainly, Revival is more than just a weeklong meeting with preaching. True Revival is what comes when the Holy Spirit takes control of the lives of God’s people and spreads to others who will accept the call to become His people. True Revival does not end after the series of meetings. After the series true Revival takes off like a rocket in the lives of God’s people.
I believe the reason many churches have done away with Revival Meetings is because the passion for Christ and for reaching those who don’t know Him has faded from the Lord’s Church. The priorities of the Lord’s people have been turned upside down. People would rather watch their favorite tv show or sports team than hear God’s Word proclaimed. They’d rather go shopping or participate in sports activities or extracurricular school activities or maybe they are just too lazy (tired) from their jobs to give the Lord one partial week of their time. They won’t take the time to pray or invite neighbors and friends to come with them. When our hearts are prepared for Revival, the crowds are unbelievable.
Today, we are preparing for an exciting Revival Meeting at First Christian Church. The Lord is once again sending Andy Avery to proclaim the Word of the Lord through Song and Preaching. I hope that you and I will be praying fervently, inviting feverishly and anticipating God’s movement in our lives passionately. God is preparing the preacher. If we pray continuously, he will deliver abundantly by the power of His Holy Spirit.
Let’s get ready for Revival!
This Sunday we will share another segment in our series Rocky Road; If God can use Peter, he can use you with a message titled, Denial, based on Matthew 26:31-35 & 59-75.
Our Revival meeting begins this Tuesday night at 6:00 and will be nightly through Saturday and finish on Sunday Morning.
Seeking Revival with you and God,