Summary: A sermon examining the elements of genuine revival.
WHAT REAL REVIVAL LOOKS LIKE - Part II
Recently I found a few quotes that go a long way in describing revival:
"Revival is that sovereign work of God in which He visits His own people, restoring and releasing them into the fullness of His blessing." - Robert Coleman
"Revival is a return to spiritual health after a period of decline into sin and broken fellowship with God...
Revival is for God's people when they need to be forgiven and restored to life, spiritual health, and vitality" -Blackaby & King (Fresh Encounter, Lifeway, 1993)
"Revival is an extraordinary work of the Holy Spirit producing extraordinary results." - Richard Owen Roberts
(Quotes retrieved from - http://www.baptiststart.com/print/revival_what_who.html)
The first few Chapters of I Samuel describe certain events in the life of the Children of Israel. By the time you arrive at Chapter 7, these people had faced several intense attacks from the Philistines. On one occasion Israel lost 4,000 men, on another they lost 30,000, following this the Philistines seized the Ark of the Covenant, Eli and his sons and his daughter-in-law died. Following a series of devastating plagues the Philistines thought it best to return the Ark to the people of Israel. The Ark remained in the house of Abinadab for a period of 20 years. After a period of time away from God, Israel sought counsel from their leader Samuel and took the proper steps to return to the Lord.
- This morning we began to walk through this passage and examine "What Real Revival Looks Like", this evening I would like to continue to consider that thought.
- In verses 2-4 we saw:
I. THE RECIPIENTS OF REVIVAL
II. THE REQUIREMENTS FOR REVIVAL
The recipients of revival are the people of God. The work that God did among the Israelites proves that God desires to bring revival to His people. Before God's could be revived, they has to meet certain qualifications. Samuel stated that Israel must:
"return unto the Lord with all their hearts, put away the strange gods and idols, prepare their hearts unto the Lord and serve Him only!"
- God's people today must do these same things in order to see real revival! Verse 3 covers 3 requirements for real revival:
A. THERE MUST BE A REALIZATION - You must realize your sinful condition.
B. THERE MUST BE A REMOVAL - You must remove anything that you have placed between yourself and God
C. THERE MUST BE A RESOLVE - You must turn from your man made idols and serve the Lord and Him alone!
- Once these requirements are met, revival can be a reality. As we move deeper into this passage I would like to look at what happens when a child of God experiences personal revival. Look with me to verses 7-14 as we consider:
III. THE RESULTS OF REVIVAL
- There are numerous results that will be experienced by God's people who experience revival. Our selected text covers no less that six of them. First of all we see that when you experience revival:
A. THE LORD WILL HEAR YOUR PRAYERS - v7 and when the Philistines heard that the children of Israel were gathered together to Mizpeh, the lords of the Philistines went up against Israel. And when the children of Israel heard it, they were afraid of the Philistines. 8 And the children of Israel said to Samuel, Cease not to cry unto the LORD our God for us, that he will save us out of the hand of the Philistines.
Keep in mind, Israel had been devastated by the Philistines in the past. It seems that they had not forgotten the defeats that they had previously endured. The people of Israel went to Samuel and begged him to intercede on their behalf.
v8 “the children of Israel said to Samuel, Cease not to cry unto the LORD our God for us, that he will save us out of the hand of the Philistines.”
You can already see that there was a difference in the Israelites. Because of revival, they knew that the Lord was their helper and protector. Instead of trying to handle things on their own, they sought the Lord! They were claiming the promise given to them in v3 (if you will remove the false Gods and turn to the Lord) and serve him only: and he will deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.
Sin creates a barrier that hinders communication between you and God. There is a great example of this in - Judges 10:13 ye have forsaken me, and served other gods: wherefore I will deliver you no more. 14 Go and cry unto the gods which ye have chosen; let them deliver you in the time of your tribulation.