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We Need Revival, but What is Revival?by Duane Mabee on May 12, 2021
Most Christians believe we need God to move in a new and powerful way in our day. We historically have called these movements of God revivals. Though we may agree on the need for a revival in our nation, I doubt we all have the same thing in mind.
When you think about God moving in our time, what do you envision God doing? Most of us want God to do something to straighten out “the world” meaning people out there, but that’s not the way God works. He doesn’t straighten out the culture at large. He moves on His own people and makes needed changes in His Church.
Christ’s letters to the seven churches in Revelation are an example of what He is thinking of when He talks about revival. In them, Christ mentions problems in the society at large, but He doesn’t give any calls for correction to the society. His calls for change are all directed to the churches – His Own people.
Here is what He calls His churches to do. This is a paraphrase of what Daniel Henderson wrote in Old Paths New Power.
- Repent and return to our first love for Jesus.
- Know that we will be called to suffer for Christ and be faithful to Him even if it means death.
- Be aware of the way Satan works and reject all deception and false teaching.
- Recognize, reject, and repent of all forms of sexual immorality and hold fast to purity until Christ returns.
- Be aware of our own tendency to appear spiritually alive when we are actually dead, and answer Christ’s call to awake up and strengthen the essential things of the faith.
- Persist in genuine love, trusting our all-powerful Christ to bring His enemies into subjection, as we keep His Word with patient endurance.
- Be repulsed by our own lukewarm condition and allow Christ to enter and transform His Own Church.
There are a lot of definitions of what a revival is, but revival happens when the Spirit of God moves with power on His Church, restoring it to Christlikeness and total surrender to the will and ways of Christ. When God revives His Church, it will have an impact on the surrounding culture, but His primary target is not the culture. God wants His people to be His people – fully surrendered to Him.
Lord, God, please bring revival to Your Church today. Start with us. Start with me.