This has been on my mind for some time. Within a week, the concept of “Revival” has been turning around in my thinking. Today, while I’m reading a particular chapter, and it is no coincidence it has something to do with the subject of “revivals”; therefore, this resultant post for today.
It was not until I began pastoring in either the Missionary Baptist church or the Church of God in Christ faith when I became aware of these, “revivals” which were usually done once a year. It was a time when a particular speaker who was in vogue—then, known for their rousing messages, would receive an invitation to “revive” the church, so to speak. Now, this would lead me to think either one or two things: (1) The church was dead before, or (2) The church will be dead after. The point, they hadn’t had during the course of the year any inspiration from the so-called leader of their body, the pastor, so someone from the outside is invited to do what they’re not able to do. Sadly, this has become a tradition having lost the true meaning of the word: “Revival”. I like this quotation, which states:
“Before the final visitation of God’s judgments upon the earth there will be among the people of the Lord such a revival of primitive godliness as has not been witnessed since apostolic times. The Spirit and power of God will be poured out upon His children. At that time many will separate themselves from those churches in which the love of this world has supplanted love for God and His Word. Many, both of ministers and people, will gladly accept those great truths which God has caused to be proclaimed at this time to prepare a people for the Lord’s Second Coming. The enemy of souls desires to hinder this work; and before the time for such a movement shall come, he will endeavor to prevent it by introducing a counterfeit. In those churches which he can bring under his deceptive power he will make it appear that God’s special blessing is poured out; there will be manifest what is thought to be great religious interest. Multitudes will exult that God is working marvelously for them, when the work is that of another spirit. Under a religious guise, Satan will seek to extend his influence over the Christian world.” –Ellen G. White, “The Great Controversy”, Chapter 29. Modern Revivals, 1888.
Did you get the point? Let’s make it very clear. Before Christ returns there will be a “revival” which will typify what took place during the time of the Apostles after having left the Upper Room. Who else would seek to “create”, better choice of word would be, “substitute” or “duplicate” what God’s Spirit would do? Satan! He would be the “spirit” behind the “counterfeit” which would have many churches having fulfilled this bit of prophecy, in their so-called form of “revival”. How do we know it doesn’t work? By evidence it is being done annually, sometimes even twice a year. How many medical traumas you’ve ever ran across where the patient needed reviving as many times? If it were my medical team, I would seek to replace them. Why not with the ministry team?
Consider this next quotation taken from the next paragraph cited above:
“In many of the revivals which have occurred during the last half century, the same influences have been at work, to a greater or less degree, that will be manifest in the more extensive movements of the future. There is an emotional excitement, a mingling of the true with the false, that is well adapted to mislead. Yet none need be deceived. In the light of God’s Word it is not difficult to determine the nature of these movements. Wherever men neglect the testimony of the Bible, turning away from those plain, soul-testing truths which require self-denial and renunciation of the world, there we may be sure that God’s blessing is not bestowed. And by the rule which Christ Himself has given, “Ye shall know them by their fruits” (Matthew 7:16), it is evident that these movements are not the work of the Spirit of God.”—ibid.
Well, there you have it! That which is being foisted upon the many different churches/denominations today are not revivals at all. It would better perhaps be called, “pep rallies” taken from what occurs in high schools before the Homecoming football game! At least during those kinds of “revivals”, there’s a chance to win something!
August 29, 2015