Like many, I’m praying for revival in our day. By revival I mean Christians returning to a deep intimacy with the Lord. Revival is the condition of believers being right with God and living in close fellowship with him. When revival comes, it certainly makes an impact on the world. Revival, however, is for believers who know the Lord but have drifted from full surrender to his will and his ways.
So why should we want revival? Why should we care? Here are some reasons to desire revival in the life of our churches and in our personal lives.
1. Because God has something better for us than casual Christianity. What God wants for you is better than what the world wants for you. Casual faith tries to live like the world and look like the world. “Don’t be too radical with your Christian faith,” it warns.
But God’s way is so much better. I didn’t say Continue reading
Revival is more than a slogan or a meeting. Revival is when the people of God get right with God and experience him in his fullness. It is a fresh touch of the presence of the Lord. If you, Christian, want to experience revival in your own life and church, here are some things that need to happen.
1. Desire God. Hunger for more of him. God feeds this hunger. When we are more hungry for the Lord than we are for power, position, fame or fortune we are closer to revival than before. When we long to sit at the feet of Jesus and Continue reading
If programs were our greatest need, the Southern Baptist Convention (and Evangelicals as a whole) would have accomplished all the Lord asks of us long ago. Programs are fine, even good. We need the practical application of our faith. But programs and methodology are not our deepest need.
If behavioral changes were our greatest need, we might whip people into obedience and call it a day. Right behavior is good, even critical. We need to do the things God asks us to do and avoid those he tells us not to do. But this is not our deepest need.
If cultural battles were our greatest need, we could Continue reading
Posted in baptist, Christianity, revival, sbc, southern baptist convention, spiritual awakening, Uncategorized
Tagged Christian, Christianity, revival, SBC, southern baptist convention, spiritual awakening
The great need of our day is for genuine revival to come to believers in our nation. I’m delighted to see Ronnie Floyd’s emphasis on revival (sometimes called a “spiritual awakening”) in my own denomination. It is desperately needed.
Revival is specifically about the revived spiritual commitment of those who know Christ as Savior and Lord. While it leads to evangelistic concern (and often an awakening among those who are not saved to their need for salvation) it is specifically about reviving those who have already been “vived”.
Here are some results that will follow a genuine revival should it come to our churches and believers.
1. A deepened love for God and the Continue reading
Posted in revival, spiritual awakening, Uncategorized
Tagged Christian, Christianity, discipleship, Evangelism, God, Jesus, Religion and Spirituality, revival, spiritual awakening, spiritual growth
My wife recently posted her 10 most influential books. (She put my books on her list. Danger of nepotism?) So, here is my stab at my most influential. (Not counting my own. Danger of ridicule?) And, I’ve doubled and trebled up to get in some more. And, I’m leaving out some books that ought to get me banned from libraries and sitting rooms as penance.
1. The Bible. I read through the bible every year at least once and have for many years. It is more thrilling to me every year and is the foundation for my faith and my life. It is really 66 books, of course, but I’ll count it as one for this. If you haven’t read it yet, try starting with John and then Acts. Finish the New Testament a couple of times and then read the entire book.
2. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis. This is a 7 book set. It is lots of fun to get lost in them. Very easy reading. I love the spiritual connection and the fun. I read them to my children and look forward to reading them to my grandchildren. And, add to this Mere Christianity (Lewis’s best non-fiction, I think) and The Screwtape Letters (tremendous insights into our spiritual battles) by Lewis. A serious Christian thinker not reading Mere Christianity is sort of like a serious student of English novels never reading A Tale of Two Cities–these things ought not to be done.
3. Trilogy of the Civil War by Shelby Foote. These three Continue reading
Posted in books, Christianity, education, history, revival, Uncategorized
Tagged bible, bible study, book, Christian, Christianity, deeper faith, devotional book, discipleship, God, Immersed, Jesus, Religion and Spirituality, revival, spiritual awakening, spiritual growth
I have a special love for Isaiah 55. It is a powerful chapter in the bible that speaks to our generation just as it did to the generation that first read its words.
When revival came to my life and church 20 years ago, this is the chapter I preached on for the next several Sunday evenings. A couple of those services last 4 hours and longer. Without complaint. Let the thought of those last two sentences sink in a moment.
God has Continue reading
Posted in Christianity, revival, Uncategorized
Tagged bible, bible study, Christian, Christianity, faith, God, Jesus, Religion and Spirituality, revival, scripture, spiritual awakening, spiritual growth
I was asked to write a couple of short things on revival recently. (One for the Illinois Baptist coming out in a few weeks and another for an update on “The Revival in Brownwood, TX and beyond” from 1995.) It has caused me to consider what happens when genuine revival comes to a person, church or region. By the way, I am speaking of a revival- a return to God among believers, not just a revival meeting or an evangelistic campaign- though I love them too.
I care about revival from two vantage points. First, I studied revival during my Ph.D. work. I wrote my dissertation on J. Edwin Orr, the greatest historian of revival and my mentor was Dr. Roy Fish, who taught and loved revival. Second, I have experienced a touch of genuine revival at several moments in my life- the time in 1995 being especially noteworthy. I’m not an expert, but I have some background.
Here are 7 things that change for us when revival come to our lives.
1. We Continue reading
Posted in Christianity, Church, evangelism, faith, revival, spiritual awakening, Uncategorized
Tagged Christian, Christianity, discipleship, Evangelism, faith, God, Jesus, relationship with god, Religion and Spirituality, revival, spiritual awakening, worship