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Summary: In this terrible world of sin and ever present evil can revival be a reality in our community again? Can we be the light of the world as Christ has called us to be?

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Sermon Brief

Date Written: April 20, 2007

Date Preached: April 22, 2007

Where Preached: OZHBC (AM) Service

Series Title: A Message on Revival

Sermon Title: Can Revival Come to Albany?

Sermon Text: 2 Chronicles 7:10-16

Introduction:

This morning God has laid a message on my heart that is going to be hard to preach. But this morning I am going to share with you what God has laid on my heart… I am going to preach about Revival!

Well preacher, we are about to have an area wide Crusade/ Revival… why do you need to preach to us about it… we know what a revival is!

Well let me ask you that question, “Do you know what true revival is?” There are many of you here today who would say things like…

Revival is when you get a preacher to come in and preach the gospel and we have a series of meetings, usually about 4-5 meetings in a week’s time… that is a revival.

There are some of you who would agree with me in saying that is not really a revival but just a series of meetings. After all every Sunday morning we have a preacher come in and preach the Gospel message… and all year long we have 3 meetings a week where the Gospel is preached or taught and we meet together in the Lord’s House.

Some of you would say that a revival is a series of meetings where God’s spirit moves and we have a great weekend, or a great week or even (heaven forbid) a great MONTH of gut-wrenching and soul-convicting services.

Well although that is a great thing to happen in any church… it is NOT true revival.

Well preacher, I am confused… is this is NOT what a revival is, what is a TRUE revival?

The Hebrew word chalaph is actually a military term that represents a soldier or group of soldiers that is surrounded and there is NO hope of escape… and then God miraculously steps in and rescues them… We see this played out on several occasions in the OT.

The Greek word eirgo which means to ‘waken from sleep’ it carries with it the idea believers have lulled off to sleep in their devotion and their commitment to God… God then intervenes and awakens them and stirs them to obedience… is that not a great picture of revival…

But we can also see that this world has had many great revivals and we have read about some of them. When we look in the Bible there are many stories of revival:

We can actually see the beginnings of revival happening at the burning bush where Moses submitted in obedience to God’s call… and a nation was freed from slavery and bondage because of his obedience…

After deliverance from Egypt we also see revival break out at the foot of Mt Sinai as the people fell on their face in humility and confession after Moses interceded for them to God to save them…

When Jerusalem had laid dormant for over 70 yrs and Nehemiah came back and rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem there was a great revival as the people got back to the Word of God and began to listen as Ezra read to them about what God required of them…

John the Baptist caused a revival of the heart in challenging people to repent of their sin and be baptized…

Jesus, Himself, issued a call to repentance for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand…

In the book of Acts we read about a great revival that happened in Jerusalem where 3000 people were saved on the very first day…

We also read about the Great Awakening that began in New England and spread down the coast and eventually back to England in the mid 1700’s.

Then there was the 2n Great Awakening in New England that spread down the coast and also across the sea to England in the early 1800’s…

There was a global revival that began in the late 1800’s and culminated in China at the “Shantung Revival’ in the early 1900’s…

There was the “Jesus Movement’ of the 1960’s that brought about the Lay Renewal movement, Contemporary Christian music and an emphasis on Youth in our churches…

There have been MANY revivals that we can read about, but what do people say about revival…

Charles G. Finney said…

He said it is nothing [more] than a new beginning of obedience to God. Just as in the case of the converted sinner, the first step is a deep repentance, a breaking down of the heart, a getting down into the dust before God, with deep humility, and the forsaking of sin.

Billy Sunday said this about revival…

A revival does two things. First, it returns the Church from her backsliding and second, it causes the conversion of men and women; and it always includes the conviction of sin on the part of the Church. What a spell the devil seems to cast over the Church today!

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