Summary: 4 keys for knowing how to pray for revival in your church.
The Church of Jesus Christ is in need of revival. The fastest growing religion in our country is Islam. God’s Word and prayer are no longer desired in schools and government. Christian values such as family, prayer, believing the Word of God is now a rarity. God’s people are no longer bothered with sin in their lives. Over the years we have slowly slipped into attitudes such selfishness, unforgiveness, disobediece, carnality, and lukewarmness in our love to Jesus and others, etc. God’s church, which once turned the world upside down is not being turned upside down by the world…In Such A Time As This...We Need Revival.
Last week, we talked about our promise for revival from Acts 1:1-11. Jesus has a plan, power, and priority for us! A church not far from ours was down to 8 discouraged people – do you know they believed God still had a plan, power, and priority for them? God has turned that little church around and today they are growing…revived and encouraged in Jesus once more!
Today, let’s discover our prayer for revival. How can we pray and prepare for a wonderful revival at our church?
I. Pray for God’s Son to be Lifted Up!
Why we do what we do for the Lord is as important as what we do for the Lord. One of the most compelling motivations to worship and serve the Lord Jesus is that His return is coming soon and we will all give an account of our lives to Him.
Bible preaching reminds us that Jesus alone is the Risen Son of God – Reigning Son of God – Returning Son of God and He is Lord of all. Biblical preaching centers of Jesus crucifixion, “Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death,” (Acts 2.23) Biblical preaching centers of Jesus resurrection, “…whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.” Biblical preaching centers of Jesus exaltation, “32 This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses. 33 Therefore being exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear. 34 “For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself: ‘ The Lord said to my Lord, “ Sit at My right hand, 35 Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.”’[a ]36 “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.”
Gerald Harris of the Christian Index pointed in his article recently that Campus Crusade for Christ surveys suggest that over 50 percent of the hundred million people in church in the USA every Sunday are not sure of their salvation. Today, we have a group labeled as “notional Christians.” These “notional Christians” describe themselves as Christians but do not believe their hope for eternal life is based on a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and the belief He died and rose again from the dead.”
This is precisely one reason we must have Biblical preaching! The only way anyone can be assured of everlasting life is precisely because Jesus died for our sins and is risen from the dead! (Acts 4.12)
When I was in college, our home church had evangelistic revival meetings. My heart was heavy for an elderly neighbor who was not a believer in Jesus. We were always good friends and she accepted my offer to come to church for the revival. To this day I remember what the evangelist preached – He preached on how to be sure of salvation - a powerful message from 1 John. Through the sermon, I noticed how uncomfortable Ms. Janice was. On the way home, I asked her what she thought of the sermon. She said, “It’s nice if that’s what you believe, David, but it’s not for me.”
Today, in America, we like the success gospel over the old, old story of Jesus and His love. We like the gospel of health, wealth, and happiness over the preaching of Christ crucified.
Of the success gospel, Warren Wiersbe says, “The people who preach this gospel dip here and there into the O.T. to pull out their proof texts, but they will fully reject “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20.27). The success gospel is a cheap message for people who are looking for a quick fix for their lives but not a permanent change in character.”
How we need a preaching revival that exalts Jesus and exposes sin. In preaching the Word of God we are reminded once more of Who Jesus is and What Jesus has done for us.