Summary: With repentance we will have revival
Intro: Revival begins with us, with “God’s people.”
• Why does revival tarry? Because often God’s people fail to repent. It’s not for lack of specialized revival ministries. It’s for lack of repentance by God’s people!
A key to how this works is found in Isaiah 6.
Isaiah 6:1, 5-8 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple....  “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”  Then one of the seraphs flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar.  With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”  Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
•• Awareness of personal sin —> repentance —> “Here am I. Send me!”
• Revival begins with us. Isaiah felt his own sin ... he repented ... God took away his sin ... Then Isaiah was ready for God to send him out and touch other people for God.
•• What, then, should we be repenting of?
•• Let’s look at how Jesus answered that question in letters to five churches in Revelation.
Revelation 2:1-5b To the angel of the church in Ephesus write:...  Yet I hold this against you: you have forsaken your FIRST LOVE  Remember the height from which you have fallen! REPENT and do the things you did at first. [caps mine]
•• We need to repent of a loveless, formal relationship with the Lord.
• Working hard for God (vs. 2), but not centered on loving God.
• Remember the “first and great commandment” — to love God deeply.
•• Is your relationship with God works-focused or love-focused? If not love-centered, then repent!
Revelation 2:12-16a To the angel of the church in Pergamum write:...  I have a few things against you: You have people there who HOLD to the TEACHING of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin by eating food sacrificed to idols and by committing SEXUAL IMMORALITY.  Likewise you also have those who hold to the teaching of the NICOLAITANS.  REPENT therefore!
•• We need to repent of holding bad teaching.
• Jesus said to be careful what and how you hear.
• We live according to what we believe, much of which comes from the teaching we receive.
•• Believers may need to repent of sexual immorality.
• Not just with our bodies, but with our minds and our eyes.
• What kind of movies and TV do we watch?
• What kind of language do we use? jokes?
• Are you at all flirtatious?
• Dressing modestly?
•• If not, then Jesus’ command is: “Repent!”
•• Believers may need to repent of " an exaggerated doctrine of Christian liberty.
Revelation 2:18, 20-22 To the angel of the church in Thyatira write:...  I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols.  I have given her time to repent of her immorality, but she is unwilling.  So I will cast her on a bed of suffering, and I will make those who commit adultery with her suffer intensely, unless they repent of her ways.
•• We need to repent of tolerating evil influences among us.
•• Again, repenting of sexual immorality.
• A repeat warning, therefore very important to Jesus.
• Eating food sacrificed to idols is also repeated.
•• And again, repenting of subjecting yourself to erroneous teaching.
• Otherwise, how can we be influences for revival in our community if we have a wrong message?
Revelation 3:1-3a To the angel of the church in Sardis write:... I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead.  Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of my God.  Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; obey it, and repent.
•• We need to repent of surface Christianity — a good reputation that does not describe us within.
• Jesus, of course, saw through their outward appearance and discerned their real state.
• The unbelievers we’re trying to reach will see through us, too, if our faith is not real and vibrant inside.