Summary: The transforming power of God will only come when His people partner with Him.
This morning we’re concluding the series, Ancient Prayers for Modern People. So far we’ve discovered how to align ourselves with God’s will through the Lord’s Prayer. Last week we learned how to pray for fellow believers. This morning we’re going to focus on the prayer of revival.
I felt it necessary to explain what revival means because in our day, in our denomination revival means evangelistic worship service or a series of such. But that is a misunderstanding formed mainly out of tradition. Revival literally means “life again” or to “bring to life” or in some cases “new life.” Revival in the spiritual sense is a period of time when God pours out His Spirit upon a group of people. Christians fully devote themselves to the cause of Christ when this happens. Multitudes of lost people find salvation through faith in Christ. An entire culture can be changed in a relatively short period of time when genuine revival occurs.
In the United States of America we are in desperate need of revival. Several years ago I heard a preacher say, “If God does not judge America He will have to apologize Sodom and Gomorrah.” His point was that the things occurring in our country are every bit as bad as Sodom and Gomorrah and if God wiped them from the face of the earth, we most certainly deserve a similar fiery fate.
I think that preacher was right. Our nation is either headed on a collision course with the wrath of a holy God, who will not tolerate wickedness and injustice, or an outpouring of His grace and mercy in revival. What happens in the course of our nation’s history is largely dependant on the response of God’s people in this land.
Let me give you some reasons why we are deserving of the judgment and wrath of God. This is my short list:
Abortion. In 1973, while the church apparently slept, the US Supreme Court ruled that all states must give women the right to exterminate their unborn children. Since that date roughly 1 million children per year have been sacrificed at the altar of personal convenience. If you do that math that means we’ve murdered somewhere in the neighborhood of 35 million children. If God judged Israel for spilling the blood of their children on the altars of Molech, what makes you think we will escape His vengeance?
Breakdown of the family. The illegitimacy rate over 70% in some communities across our country. That means more and more children are born into situations where they don’t even know who their father is. More couples are opting to live together. Marriage, which was ordained by God for sexual express and procreation, is seen as just one option among many. Half of all marriages today are a remarriage. The rate of divorce is slightly higher among Christians. Just a couple of weeks ago the California Supreme Court overturned ban on gay marriage. Unless the legislature of that state passes an amendment, it will be the law. The institution that God ordained between a man and a woman is now open to reinterpretation. What’s next? Legalized polygamy? Unions between adults and children? Marry your horse? Sounds funny, but people have already applied for licenses to do it. Will God not visit his indignation upon a people who mock His created order?