Summary: Gypsy Smith, a British evangelist during the late 19th and early 20th century said the way to have revival is to draw a circle around yourself, get down on your knees and pray, “Lord send a revival and let it begin inside of this circle.” The reason I ch
…Because It Was Done So Quickly!
The reason I chose this present passage to begin the New Year is given to us in verse 17.
Everything that was carried out in this chapter occurs in the first month of the Jewish religious calendar, which corresponds with our March/April.
What a fantastic way for us to begin the New Year!
In other words, to start by taking the holy decision to correct and renew our lives and to carry out works worthy of such correction and consecration.
On the first day of their year under the leadership of their new King Hezekiah, the Israelites began the purification of the Lord’s Temple and completed this cleaning in sixteen days.
2 Chronicles chapter 29 describes a spiritual revival, a unique, amazing spiritual reformation, and a formula is given to us, a model if you will, so that WE, TOO, can taste and enjoy by the grace of God a spiritual REVIVAl.
The recipe is very simple and 3-fold:
-consecration and purification
-sacrifices and offerings
-worship and singing.
Nothing new, nothing fancy, nothing unknown, nothing different, but the same old recipe of God that always works.
Think about it: what does revival mean?
In Greek the word carries the idea of rekindling the fire; we push aside the ashes, re-light the fire and keep the fire hot and strong by throwing a lot of kindling wood. Anazopureo: Ana-again, Zo-life, Pur-fire.
Let us take a look at this revival’s characteristics in the PROPER order.
First, a few things about King Hezekiah:
When Hezekiah became King, at 25 years of age and reigned for 29 years, the condition of the whole country, Jerusalem and the Temple, was pathetically tragic, and perhaps it brings to mind the condition and state of many churches today:
1.The doors of the temple were closed and sealed shut, see verse 7.
This symbolizes the total lack of approaching God.
Especially when we don’t carry out the verse, “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence,” Hebrews 4: 16.
His father Ahaz did all this! 2 Chronicles 28: 24.
2.Lamps that had been put out, verse 7.
This shows the lack of witnessing: “In the same way let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your father in heaven,” Matthew 5: 16.
3.They did not burn incense, verse 7.
Prayers were not raised to the Holy Presence of God: “May my prayer be set before you like incense; may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice,” Psalm 141: 2.
4.They did not present any burnt offerings at the sanctuary, verse 7.
The burnt offerings in the book of Leviticus is an amazing and unique symbol of total dedication where they would offer their best. They would offer it every day, morning and evening in Old Testament times, and in the New Testament, Romans 12: 1-2.
All of these things were missing from the Temple, and all of these things are clear signs of God’s people distancing themselves, with painful and dire consequences, verses 8-9.
So what did EXIST in the Temple that was the heart of religious life in the Old Testament?
There were impurities, there was dirt and dust, there was rubbish, there were cobwebs, there was rust on the furnishings, his father had taken away all the sacred furnishings so that the Priests could not carry out worship to the Living God, 2 chronicles 28: 24 – but above all else there were unclean idols.
How greatly must young Hezekiah have suffered, how great a number of tears he must have shed, seeing his idolatrous father and the frightening impertinence and indifference of the people!
How great must young Hezekiah have suffered seeing the doors of the Temple sealed shut, being able to do absolutely nothing, hoping that the time would soon come that he would take over power and make drastic changes, and perhaps in this way he would rekindle and awaken the zeal of the worshippers which had by this time grown cold, it had completely vanished.
So then, what did the King do?
It all starts with consecration, verse 5.
We cannot speak of a church and of working for God without a consecration, a self-cleansing, a transparency, a holy life.
The consecration, the purification comes before service to God, verses 5, 11!
Neglecting consecration is a great sin because God (who is Holy) has honored us by giving us the great holy right to serve him and he must therefore expect from us analogous and holy response.
Consecration means I step aside, to straighten things out, to live differently.
Consecration means I am with the Lord. The Lord dresses me, he adorns me, he guides my every move, he guides my day, he guides my every breath.