Ten Characteristics of a Genuine Revival

Originally Posted on August 21, 2020

Webinar Transcript

– Welcome to this study that we’re gonna do tonight. Just a brief study on the 10 marks of revival. I’m Terry Long, I am a state missionary here with Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions. I work in the evangelism office with some great guys and my particular role is spiritual renewal or revival and evangelism. So it’s just been a joy to be a part of this team that we work together, to my colleague, Matt Burford today, he’s our apologetics guy. He did a seminar this morning, this afternoon at one o’clock. And so, so really happy to have him. So we’re just gonna jump right in to what are the 10 characteristics of a genuine revival. From the Welsh Revival, which is one of my favorite revivals in all of history. I love the story of the Great Welsh Revival, the revival on the Island of Lewis in 1949 with Duncan Campbell, and the revival of 1857, the prayer revival with Jeremiah Lamphere. And that came out of that prayer time that he started in New York City. Those are my three favorite stories of revival in history, and out of the Welsh Revival, there was a statement that I think is a powerful statement. It says, once you’ve experienced the fire, you can never be satisfied with the smoke. And I know that there’s some listening tonight that you’ve experienced revival, or maybe you’ve read about it somewhere, maybe like me, you’ve read a lot of stories of revival or you’ve heard about revival, but you’ve got an idea of what genuine revival is and if you’ve ever tasted it, if you’ve ever experienced it, there’s always a hunger for that spirit of revival that you experienced. I was privileged to grow up in a little town in Mississippi where when I got saved as a teenager in Baptist Church, that church, and some other churches would take their church members to a place in Myrtle, Mississippi called Camp Zion. Camp Zion was founded by an old home missionary, Percy Ray, and it was a great Baptist camp meeting, and the whole atmosphere of that time you were there, hearing some of the greatest preachers alive. I heard R.G Lee and B.R Lakin and J Harold Smith and Adrian Rogers and Jerry Vines and Gray Allison, and all and all in all, I would hear them and it was just preaching day and night in prayer and singing and worship. But that stirred us in my heart of hunger for revival. And then when I surrender to preach a little bit later and was pastoring my first church at 21 in the early ’80s, Fred Wolf at Cottage Hill Baptist Church was hosting conferences on revival and spiritual awakening. And I would drive over and go to those conferences, and I’m telling you, the Spirit of God would fall on that place, and it was just an amazing touch of God. It was just an amazing thing that you would experience genuine revival. And so if you’ve ever experienced the fire, you’ll never be satisfied with the smoke. And so what I wanna do tonight is examine genuine revival. What does it look like? What is it, what would it look like in today’s world and how would we handle that? How would it affect our churches? How would it affect our lives? How would it affect our communities? And is that what a divided nation and a defeated church today needs more than anything? I really believe that it is. I really believe that’s what we need more than anything. So we wanna talk about genuine revival, and I think we need to understand that we’re living in a time that is ripe for revival. I mean, if ever there’s been a time that’s ripe for revival it’s today, the day in which we live, with the whole coronavirus taking place and all the things that are happening in the world, we’re in difficult days, strange and difficult times. And yet, every revival in history was born in a time like this. In fact, I think you can see that even in biblical history, it was C.S Lewis who said, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, “speaks to us in our conscious, “but He shouts to us in our pain.” Pain is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world. And so when God allows pain to come into our life or into a nation, there’s a purpose behind it. God is calling us to Himself. So all of this going on today that have us all have us up in the air and worried and concerned, we need to be listening to what God is saying to us in these times. Erwin Lutzer said the church is waiting for the world to become regenerate while the world is waiting for the church to become repentant. So we need revival in our land. I don’t think there’s any question about that. So we need to start off with a definition of revival. Before we get into the 10 characteristics, what really is revival? I wanna use Jonathan Edwards’ definition of revival. Jonathan Edwards had a lot to do with first grade awakening and may be the most brilliant theologian our nation has ever produced. And this is what Jonathan Edwards said about revival, “God have had it much on His heart “from all eternity to glorify His dear “and only begotten Son. “And there are some special seasons “that He appoints to that end, “wherein He comes forth with omnipotent power “to fulfill His promise and oath to Him. “And these times are times of remarkable pouring out “of His Spirit to advance His kingdom such a day “is a day of His power.” Jonathan Edwards defined revival as a pouring out of the Spirit of God. It’s something outside of ourselves. And I really liked that definition, and that’s the one I wanna operate on tonight because I think in America, what we’ve done is we’ve contextualized and culturalize this idea of revival, and we’ve done it so much that we basically lost the true meaning of revival. So let’s talk about what it really is. D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones commented on Jonathan Edwards’ definition of revival. And this is what D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones is one of my favorite expositors said about revival. He said today, we’re hearing much about what is called renewal. People dislike the term revival, they prefer renewal. What they mean by that is that we’ve all been baptized with the spirit at the moment of regeneration. And all we have to do therefore, is to realize what we already have and yield ourselves to it. That is not revival, you can do all day teach and derive many benefits, but you still have not had revival. Revival is an outpouring of the Spirit, it is something that comes upon us. Something that happens to us, we are not the agents, we’re just aware that something has happened. Jonathan Edwards reminds us of what revival really is. So revival is not something we can work up on our own. We can’t work it up, we can’t organize it. G. Campbell Morgan said we cannot organize revival, but what we can do is set ourselves to catch the wind of the spirit or the wind from heaven when God chooses to blow upon His people once again. So revival is the rekindling of the fire within the heart of the believer. It’s the pouring out of the Spirit of God upon God’s people. Some people look at revival as just a week of meetings, so we get an evangelist and we get a singer and we get a local rock band or something, and some gimmicks and some bubble gum and some pizza for the youth. And we have a week of meetings, and then when it’s over, we say, we’ve had revival, but you and I both know that is not revival. And then others, you know, there’s another idea of revival, and that is that revival is just a real big time of excitement and emotion. It’s an emotional experience, and the fact is revival may be accompanied by revival, by emotion and by excitement that may accompany revival and often does. But just because you have a jam-packed church full of people that are clapping and raising their hands, and all of that, does not mean you’ve had revival. When the Holy Spirit is poured out upon people, in genuine revival, it is a serious holy moment. The Spirit of God will never lead us to frivolity and foolishness in the name of revival. And there’s a lot of that going on. I just wanna say, I don’t believe any biblical revival ever begins with holy laughter or barking like dogs or howling like wolves or stumbling around like you’re drunk and falling down and being slain in the spirit. I believe these are all counterfeit, pseudo revivals that tickle our ears and give us warm fuzzies and a little bit of entertainment. And sometimes it’s just pure silliness and foolishness, and it’s carnal. I think, He calls His angels to weep and demons to rejoice because one lady to ask her pastor, when are we gonna get away from entertaining the goats and get back to feeding the sheep? And so there are a lot of strange ideas about revival. Jonathan Edwards said this, he said, Satan will keep his grip on men as long as he can, but when he can do that no longer, he often tries to drive them to extremes. Satan wants them to dishonor God and wound the Christian faith in that way. Stephen Olford said, “Revival is not some emotion “or worked up excitement, it is an invasion “from heaven that brings a conscious awareness of God.” And so while I do get emotional myself, and I believe that emotion is a part of it, and singing and praising, but I think a lot of what we’re seeing today and what you see on the internet is not revival at all. So revival is not just the week of meetings, and revival is not just a big emotional experience. And I’ll say this too, revival is also different from evangelism. Now I’m an evangelism guy, I work with the evangelism office of the Alabama State Board of Missions, and I’m proud of it and pleased to do it, but revival is not just the conversion of the local atheist or the town drunk or local drug dealer, or some celebrity or athlete. Revival is the bringing of new life to the people of God. Revival is about the church, and there is a difference between revival and evangelism, somebody said it this way, evangelism is down the aisle while revival is across the aisle. I think that’s a pretty good way of looking at it, and I think this is a pretty big misconception about revival as evidenced by the fact that most of us when we hear about a revival meeting, somewhere we say, how many did you have saved? And if they say none, but we think we didn’t have revival, but revival has more to do with the church than it does with lost people getting saved, although the lost people will get saved. And we’ll talk about that a little bit later on. So the word revival comes from two Latin words, re meaning again, and vivo meaning to live. So revival means to live again, to bring back to life, and a lost person cannot be revived. He’s never been revived, he’s gotta be saved. He needs to be born again, he needs to be regenerated before he can ever be revived. So evangelism is the salvation of sinners, revival is the stirring of God’s people to new life, to new dedication, to new commitment, to a new passion for Jesus Christ. Evangelism is bringing the loss to new life in Jesus whereas revival is bringing the church of Jesus Christ to new life. So I really am excited about the fact that we could see revival in this day, and I think we are ripe for it, and given the situation now, the Scripture I wanna use tonight is 2 Chronicles 7:14, it’s our favorite revival verse. Remember, “If my people which are called “by my name shall humble themselves and pray “and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, “then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin “and will heal their land.” Now, we love to quote that in reference to revival, but here’s what we don’t do, we don’t quote the whole sentence, that’s only half the sentence, the word if begins with I, it’s a little, it’s a lower case i because it’s in the middle of a sentence. Now, I don’t know how many years I’ve been a long time without realizing that, it has been a revelation to me. So let’s go back to verse 13 and read the beginning of the sentence now, and then think about the day in which we’re living. Here’s what it says, God’s speaking says, “When I shut up heaven “and there is no rain or command the locusts “to devour the land or send pestilence “among my people, “if my people which are called “by my name shall humble themselves and pray.” The great revival promise that is perhaps the greatest promise, and all of the Bible is half of a verse, the first half of which talks about the judgment of God, talks about plagues, talks about pestilence, talks about God not sending rain. I mean, do you find it just ironic that this great revival verses is in the midst, is dealing with the judgments of the Lord. And God says, if it’s during that time, that if my people will repent, I will heal their land. Now think about today, think about what we’re experiencing, that versus is fully applicable to our situation today. So I believe that God wants to bring revival to our land. So the question would be, if He did that, what would it look like? What would revival truly look like? Well, I’m no expert. I’ll tell you right off, I’m certainly no expert, but I do love the idea, I do love the subject and it feeds my soul. So I wanna talk to you about 10 characteristics of revival. Let’s just start with number one. The first characteristic of a genuine revival is a deep conviction and repentance of personal sin. I don’t have PowerPoint or anything like that, so you just have to jot these down and try to write them down if you can, but I’ll try to make sure you get it a deep repentance, a deep conviction and repentance of personal sin. So I say personal sin because there’s only one thing that can keep revival from coming to your heart and that sin, there’s only one kind of sin that can keep revival from coming to your heart, and that’s your sin, it’s personal, revival is personal, it’s not gonna happen out there before it happens here. Gypsy Smith said, “the key, if you wanna have revival, go into your closet, “take a piece of chalk, draw a circle in it. “Get inside that circle on your knees “and cry out to God to revival.” And when revival comes inside that circle, it’s all. And that’s where it starts, it starts with us. But when the Spirit is poured out, as Jonathan Edwards said in revival, there is immediately a conviction of personal sin. Remember now, the Spirit of God is called the Holy Spirit, so He’s the Holy Spirit, so He’s concerned for our holiness, He’s concerned for our spiritual purity. He’s concerned that we deal with our sin, and Jesus said in John 16:8, that when the Holy spirit comes, He will convict of sin and of righteousness and of judgment. So the very first thing in a reviving work that the Holy Spirit does is that is He convicts people of their sin, and He brings us to a heartfelt repentance, which produces a change in character and a change in character that leads to a change in lifestyle, and that is revival. You just can’t be the same once revival comes. We know that in the Welsh Revival, there was so many things that change when revival came to the Island of Lewis, and in the Welsh Revival, the miners, listen now, the miners had to retrain their mules because their mules wouldn’t respond to their voice because there was no more vulgarity, there was no more profanity and the mules didn’t recognize their voice. So even the mules knew when revival came on the Island of Lewis and in the Great Welsh Revival. So revival is a move of the spirit that produces a heartfelt conviction and repentance over personal sin. I love the way James MacDonald talks about repentance, he says, “I would love it if I could preach “a one-word message, like the Old Testament prophets did. “And I could just say, repent, “you know, good morning, repent, now let’s pray.” That was , that’s kind of the way the Old Testament prophets did. Hello, repent, I mean, that was their message, and it was plagiarism to the max because they all have the same message. Then they would get in their chariot and ride across town, and they’d say, “Good morning, ma’am repent.” “Nice turban, sir, repent.” And I think that will just be hilarious if we could have a one-word message, but that was the message of the Old Testament prophets. Now, why did these Old Testament prophets all preach the same basic message, which was repent. It was because they knew that all wonderful things that God wants to give His people and He’s willing to give His people, and is ready to give His people are released when we come to Him with a spirit of repentance, God is looking for repentance. Now, just in case you think that’s only Old Testament, remember John the Baptist message when he came preaching, repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. And the Bible says, Jesus came out of the wilderness with the Spirit of God on Him and in Him, and the Bible says from that time, Jesus began to preach and say, “Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” And then there’s the early church in Acts 2 on the day of Pentecost, Peter gets up and preaches, what does he preach? Amazing grace, no, he preaches repentance. He tells the people to repent, repent therefore, turn back that your sins may be blotted out, times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, that’s Acts 3:19. So this message of repentance was so powerful in the Old Testament, powerful in Jesus’ day and powerful in the Book of Acts. My question is this, who’s preaching repentance anymore? Why aren’t we preaching that message? You say, well, there’s so many other things to preach, yeah. And there’s also maybe a little tendency for us to have a self preservation, because one, when you start preaching repentance and preaching on sin, some folks can get pretty mad with you. You know, they don’t like to have their sin pointed out. Joseph Parker said this, he said, “The man whose little sermon is repent, “sets himself against his age and will for the time being, “be battered mercilessly by the age “whose moral tone he challenges. “There is one end for such a man off with his head, “you better not try to preach repentance “until you’ve pledged your head to heaven.” Well said. So we need to understand that when revival comes, the first thing that’s gonna happen is not people are gonna do two hand flips and the somersault down the aisle, laughing their heads off. They’re gonna be spitting with conviction over their sins. And when’s the last time we’ve seen that in our churches? When have we seen people just under deep conviction? We used to see that, but we don’t see that much anymore, and I don’t think the message has changed. I think we the messengers have changed. So revival, the outpouring of the Spirit of God will never come without people, the people of God becoming deeply aware of their sin. Let me just say, if you’re satisfied with your spiritual life the way it is, you’ll never see revival. Revival always begins with a divine dissatisfaction, a stirring in the soul that I’m not what I ought to be, and God needs to do a fresh work in my life. So we’re pretty good at magnifying the sins of others and seeing their sin. And, you know, we have kind of a spiritual hyperopia if you will, farsightedness, we can see way out there very clearly. We can see the sins of others really clear, but everything’s kind of blurry here close to home. And I think Jesus had something to say about that, the Sermon on the Mount, didn’t he about judging one another and getting the speck of dust out of your brother’s eye while you’ve got the log in your own eyes, Matthew 7. So we really need a fresh preaching of repentance and a movement of the spirit of conviction of sin. Now, when that happens, when God begins to move, that confession of sin is gonna be a normal thing. John Avant talks about the revival that broke out at Coggins Avenue in Brownwood, Texas, back in the mid ’90s, one of the greatest more recent revivals we’ve ever seen and confession of sin, people getting up and clearing their conscience and confessing sin was a major part of that revival meeting. And it’s a characteristic of every revival I’ve ever been a part of. When you get close to the Lord, the light of the Lord is gonna shine in your heart. When you get close to the Lord, hold on just a second, somebody’s calling me, okay. When you get close to the Lord, there’s gonna be more light shining in your heart, more light in your heart reveals more sin, exposes more sin, then there’s more confession and there’s more repentance, and there’s more cleansing. I used to think that the closer a person got with God, the less sin he would have to confess, that’s not true. The people that are closest to God that I’ve ever known were more sensitive to sin. They confess things that I find overlook, and I think that’s the way it is, the light draw exposes the sin. Just so have you ever been into a room when it was dark and it looked like everything was fine, you opened the curtains and the light shines in and you see all these thousands of particles floating in the air. Well, did they just come in the moment you opened the curtain? No, they were already there. You just couldn’t see them, but the light expose them and you could see them, and that’s exactly the way it is with repentance and with conviction when the Holy Spirit begins to move. And so once we confess and begin to come to the Lord with the spirit of repentance, revival begins. So that’s the first characteristic of revival. Let’s move to the second one, the second characteristic is humility and brokenness before God, humility and brokenness before God, in seasons of revival, there’s a great spirit of humility and brokenness. The repentance and conviction of sin leads us to that, and I wanna tell you, brokenness and humility is highly valued by God. Can I just tell you that there is one sin that God hates above every sin, it’s clear in Scripture, God talks about this, He hates it every time He sees it, He hates it when He sees it in me, He hates it when He sees it in you, He hates it when He sees it in your wife, He hates it when He sees it in your teenager, He hates it when He sees it on Monday morning, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday at noon, He hates it every time He sees it, and it is the sin of pride, pride. God hates the sin of pride. He said, beware of the leaven of pharisees. What was He talking about? Pride, arrogance, and God hates the sin of pride, why? Because that was the sin of Satan, that was the sin of Lucifer. You say, I thought he got the sin was rebellion. Well, rebellion is the child of pride. And, but before Lucifer rebel, there was pride in his heart, go back and read Isaiah’s passage and Ezekiel’s passage talking about the fall of Lucifer, it says over and over, I think at least five times in the Ezekiel’s passage that his heart was lifted up in pride, his heart was lifted up, and that was the first sin. And once his heart was lifted up, it led to rebellion and all this mess going on in the world today, all of these revolts and all this protesting and all this rebellion, it’s pure satanic rebellion. It’s right out of the pits of hell. And it’s led, it’s sparked by pride. I want to be recognized, I want my cause to be recognized. I want my name to be recognized. And God was not in any of that, He won’t have anything to do with that. So humility and brokenness is valued in the eyes of God. I said, God hates pride anytime He sees it. But can I also tell you there’s something that God loves every time He sees it, God loves humility. He does, He loves humility. He loves it when He sees it in me, He loves it when He sees it in you, He loves it when He sees it in your wife, he loves it When He sees it in your teenager, He loves it on Monday morning, Tuesday morning, Wednesday morning, Thursday morning, Friday at noon, Saturday at midnight, God loves humility every time He sees it, humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and He will lift you up. And what happens in revival is God begins to convict us of our sins, we repent and we’re broken and we’re humbled. Whereas we once may have sought the spotlight and drew attention to ourselves, now we put our face in the carpet and we’re humbled before God. It all changes when brokenness comes about, brokenness is a beautiful, beautiful thing. Psalm 34:18 happens to be my life verse. The Lord is nigh unto those who are of a broken heart and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit, that’s a powerful verse. And the idea of brokenness is that God finds that person that’s broken irresistible. He’s drawn to that person, you’re never more beautiful before God than when you’re going through brokenness, I didn’t know what it was the first time I went through it, 1984, I didn’t know what to call it, but I was experiencing it. Charles Stanley hadn’t come out with his series on brokenness, I got it later and read and listened to the series, and I thought that’s exactly what I had been through. But God only uses broken people, did you know that? I get maybe challenger pierce, whatever name is, a book out or a message called, God uses crack pots, cracked pots , broken vessels, that’s what God uses. Isaiah 57:15 says, “For this says the high and lofty one “who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy. “I dwell in the high and holy place “with him who has a contrite and humble spirit “to revive the spirit of the humble “and to revive the heart of the contrite once.” And so brokenness and humility is a big part of revival, and this is how it starts. No revival ever begins with holy laughter. No revival begins with frivolity and foolishness. Revival begins with conviction and brokenness. Michael Catt, Albany, Georgia said this, the message of brokenness, repentance and revival is the last message of the church. Now listen to this, the things that Manley Beasley, Ron Dunn, Vance Havner, Leonard Ravenhill, Bertha Smith and others preach is now pushed aside so that we can be cute and cutting edge. Nothing is more cutting edge than calling God’s people into a right relationship with Christ. So we need brokenness and repentance, that is when you see that happening, you know revival is happening. So there is deep conviction and repentance of personal sin followed by humility and brokenness. Third characteristic, restoration of fellowship within the body of believers. When genuine revival comes, it will always lead to reconciliation between brothers and sisters in Christ whose fellowship have been broken. There are no longer willing to let bygones be bygones, they want a clear conscience. They wanna get right with their brother. Now that’s, it’s not an easy thing to do, but revival produces that. And if you’ve have some of your preachers, if you’ve preached revivals, you’ll bear witness with me on this. I’ve been in revival meetings where I’ve preached my lungs out and nothing happened. And then close out the meeting one night and a lady stands up and says, “I’ve got to say something.” And she says, “I’ve had a bad spirit “toward the pastor’s wife, “and I wanna say, I’m sorry, and I’m wrong, “and I wonder if she would meet me at the altar “and pray with me.” And then next thing, you know, the altar is full and you’re going another 45 minutes in that invitation. But it began with a reconciliation within the body of Christ. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen a revival spirit breakout when somebody gets right with another person. And they, you know, when revival comes, you wanna have a clear conscience, you’re gonna be concerned that you have a clear conscience. You say, well, what is a clear conscience? Well, I heard this definition years ago, and I think it’s probably the best one I’ve ever heard. A clear conscience is the absolute knowledge that there is no unconfessed sin between me and God. There’s nothing between me and God, everything to confess. And there is not one person out there anywhere who can point a finger at me and say, you’ve offended me, and you’ve never asked my forgiveness. So it’s not that somebody would say, it’s not that you never offend somebody, it’s that somebody out there has been offended, but you’ve not asked forgiveness, that’s a clear conscience, nothing between me and God and no one out there can point a finger at me and say, you offended me, but you never asked my forgiveness. Paul said this in Acts 24:16, “I must always strive to have a conscience without offense “toward God and man.” So we all get offended at times, and we all offend others at times, what do we do about it? Scripture is clear when we’re the offended ones we’re to forgive as God has forgiven us, we wipe the slate clean, we don’t hold a grudge, we don’t nurse a grudge, we don’t gossip, we don’t backbite, we don’t treat them any differently, we just forgive the way we’ve been forgiven. We don’t coddle anger, we forgive, that’s what Paul meant in Ephesians 4:31, When he said, “Let all bitterness wrath “and clamor and evil speaking, “be put away from you with all malice “and be kind to one another, “tenderhearted forgiving one another, “even as God in Christ, forgave you.” But what about when we know someone is out there that’s been offended by us, what did we do? Jesus made it perfectly clear and listen, no psychologist anywhere has ever improved on this counsel. Jesus said, Matthew 18:15, “If your brother sins against you, “go and tell him his fault between him and you alone. “If he hears you, you’ve gained your brother” That’s the whole purpose of it, gaining your brother. “But if he will not hear, “take with you one or two more, “and by the mouth of two or three witnesses, “every word may be established, “and if he refuse us to hear them, then go to the church. “But if he refuses to hear even the church, “let him be to you a heathen and a tax collector.” Well, what do we do with heathens and tax collectors? Jesus said, pray for him. You love your enemies, you pray for them. You don’t cut them off and have nothing to do with them and say, well, you can just go on to hell then, no, no, you love them, you pray for them. And you wait for that opportunity to be able to be restored to them. Matthew 5:23-24, “Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar “and there remember that your brother “has something against you, “leave your gift there at the altar, go your way, “first, be reconciled to your brother, “and then come and offer your gift.” According to Jesus, being right with your brother is a priority. If you come to the altar to offer your gift of worship to the Lord, and you’re not right with your brother, He said, leave your gift, leave it and go get right. Now, that’s how important forgiveness is, and reconciliation and restoration of the fellowship is to God. And so I think there are probably a lot of songs that lifted up that don’t get beyond the ceiling because there’s all in our heart to get somebody else, there’s tithes that are given that don’t get to the Lord because there’s all in our heart. Jesus said, leave your gift before the altar and go your way. Now I remember the first time God ever impressed on me, the importance of a clear conscience. And I had to go to some people from years back. I mean, there was a deacon in first church that I served as a youth pastor that got on my case in a deacon’s meeting really hard. And I’m sure I deserved it, but I mean, I felt unfairly treated and I shot back at him and I spoke harshly to him. He was old enough to be my father, may be even my grandfather. And years later after I left that church for years, I would pass that man’s house, and I would think, now, that man hates me, that man hates me, and I was terrified to ever meet him anywhere. You ever been like that? And when the Lord showed me that I needed to get a clear conscience, the first person he put on my heart to go to was this deacon. And I called him on the phone with fear and trembling, I didn’t wanna do it, but I had to do it. And I just thought he was just gonna rape me over the coals and say terrible things to me ’cause I thought he hated me, that’s what the devil had been telling me for like seven years. And so I called him on the phone and he answered the phone. And I said to his name, I gave him, I said, “Brother so, and so I said, this is Terry Long, “do you remember me?” He said, “Terry Long, do I remember you? “My wife and I pray for you every day. “We’ve been following your ministry for seven years, “we thank God for what God has done in your life. “I’m so glad to hear from you, “what caused you to call me today?” I was not expecting that, you see the devil had been lying to me. Remember now his name is accuser, he’s the accuser of the brethren. He’d been accused in that man to me all those years and made me think that man hated me. And if I’d have never called him to clear my conscience, I would have never known differently. And that happened again and again. An old college professor, I thought she couldn’t stand me. I thought I was the worst student, but I had to call her and get something right. And she said, “Terry,” she said, “You were one of my best students, “I love teaching you.” And I was like, “Really, I didn’t ever get that in class.” You know so but my conscious became clear and I can tell you the freedom that comes from that is powerful when you obtain a clear conscience, that’s a characteristic of revival. You’ll see that when you see genuine revival. The power of the early church is revealed in the repetition of this phrase. They were of one mind and one accord, and that’s repeated all through the Book of Acts, they were truly unified. Now compare that with the church of today. There’s so much bitterness and anger and grudges and backbiting and gossip and stuff going on in the church today. No wonder we don’t sense the Holy Spirit in our midst, it flied a long time ago. And so we really have a lot of relationship issues in our church, somebody said the church is a lot like Noah’s Ark, if it weren’t for the storm on the outside, we couldn’t stand the stench on the inside. You know that little poem that says to dwell above with the saints we love, all that will be glory, but to dwell below with the saints we know, well, that’s another story. And so being right with one another is a part of revival and that’s one of the marks, you’ll see that happening when genuine revival takes place, a reconciliation between brothers and sisters in Christ or a restoration within the fellowship. Well, let’s look at number four, the fourth characteristic of revival, an unbridled sense of joy and freedom. Now there is a relationship between true revival and true joy, so how do you know that? Well, listen to Psalm 85:6, and that’s that great prayer of David for revival, and David said, “Wilt thou not revive thy people again, “that we may rejoice in thee” In the early spring of this year, well, let me just say this about that before I get away from it, the only stated purpose that David gave, the end game for revival in that verse is that God’s people would rejoice. There’s a connection between revival and rejoicing, and the lack of joy that we see in our churches and even in our lives is indicative of the fact that we’re not anywhere close to revival. So there’s this sense of joy that comes, I was gonna say in the spring of this year, I read through the Bible in 90 days, I love doing that. I can’t do it too many times, but I’ve done it a few times. And this spring, I read through the Bible in 90 days and marked every verse that referred to the blood of Christ or to the atonement always about 475 of them, somewhere along in there, that was a beautiful 90 days of Scripture. And right now, I’m reading through the Bible the second time for this year in 90 days. And I’m marking every verse that refers to joy, gladness or rejoicing. And you’d be shocked how much is in the Bible about God’s people rejoicing in Him. God wants us to be rejoicing, and we’re the only people on earth by the way that have a right to be happy because our past is forgiven, our present makes sense and our future is secure. So we have a right, we have a reason to be happy, we wanna be the most joyful, happy people on earth, but we don’t look like it most of the time, most Christians today are a lot like Lazarus after Jesus raised him from the dead. He had raised him from the dead, he was alive, but he still had, he was still bound by the grave claws, remember, so he was alive but bound. And that describes a lot of Christians today, we don’t have freedom from the sins, we’re alive in Christ, but we’re still bound by a lot of guilt and bitterness and anger and sins of habits that we have that we think we can never break, moral impurity and all these things, thought patterns that defeat us and we’re bound, but yet we’re alive, and we’re convinced by the enemy of our soul that we can’t be free so we often just give up on the idea of victory in Christ and we settle for just fewer defeats. My goodness, I’m getting under conviction, he’s been talking about that, but Jesus didn’t leave Lazarus in that alive, but bound condition did He said, He gave the command, unbind him and let him go. And I just wanna say that’s what happens when true revival comes, people get set free from the things that have them in bondage. I think about Bartimaeus by the side of the road when Jesus came along and Jesus said, bring Him to me, Bartimaeus cast aside his garment. Now that he’d been holding on to that garment for no telling how many years, it was all he had. And yet he threw it aside to go to Jesus and get his sight. And I know a lot of Christians that are clinging to their garment, you know, that’s their security. And when Jesus comes in revival, when the Spirit is poured out in revival, people are willingly cast aside those garments and those things that hold them down and keep them in bondage, and they get the chains of sin broken and they’re set free. In 2012, I was called by God to do an unusual thing, it’s the most unusual thing I’ve ever done, and that was to put up a 14 foot cross up on the side of the road in South Mississippi at a busy intersection, and to go to that cross for 100 days and just pray. I would get there about six o’clock in the morning, and stay about four or five o’clock in the evening. And I did it for 100 days with fear and trembling. I mean, I was terrified. I’m not a great man of faith or anything like that, but God called me to do it. And then He supernaturally confirmed it was, thought I might get out of it if He didn’t confirm it but He did so for 100 days I go to the cross. And in that 100 days, over 1500 people came to that cross for prayer about somewhere between 23 and 30 got saved, 23 while I was there within a week or two, it was the number went to 30 people who came to know Christ. And I saw some of the most amazing some of the most radical salvation experiences I’ve ever seen in 44 years of ministry. But one of them was a guy named Rodney Fernandez, he didn’t get saved, he was already saved, but he came, he stopped there one day on his way to work, he and his muffler shop, he was kind of a Hispanic guy, Fernandez was his last name. And Rodney got out of his truck, little Toyota pickup, and he just stood at the tailgate of his truck, sobbing in his muffler uniform. I mean, he had his uniform, so he just sob, I walked out to him and I stood there for a long time before he could get a word out. Finally, all he could get out is a hammer and a nail. So I would have people all that time. I had people write their prayer requests on a piece of paper. I would give them a hammer to nail, they would walk to the cross so they would nail that prayer request on the cross, there were thousands of prayer requests within that 100 days nailed to the cross and he knew what to do. I gave him a hammer and the nail, he already had it all written out, it looked like a novel in his hand actually, he’d been up all night writing out his sins and his problems. And he walked through the cross and he stood there for a long time looking at all, all the prayer requests that were up and down that cross nailed to it. And then turned to me and he shook his head and he said, “I’m not worthy.” And I said, “What do you mean?” He said, “I’m not worthy to put my prayer requests “where theirs is.” So he walked to the back of the cross and scrape the dirt away from the bottom, from the back of the cross, he scraped away the dirt and nailed his prayer request into the dirt at the backside of the base of that cross. And I remember standing there thinking, Lord, if I’ve never seen humility, I’ve just seen it. Well, Rodney pray and I’ll stay back and just let him deal with God, let God deal with him. When he got up, I put my arm around him I said, “Brothers, is there something you wanna talk about? “Is there some way I can help you?” He said, “No, it’s too much.” And he started to walk away, then he came back and he said, “Yes, I will, I can’t talk about it.” And he poured out in the next 30 minutes, a life of sin and guilt. And then we prayed and asked God to set him free. Well, he went on to work in the next morning at about the same time that truck pulled up again. And this time he jumped out of the truck and he literally ran down to where I was standing by the cross, threw his arms around me and bear hugged me. And he was grinning from ear to ear. He said, “I am free”. He said, “I slept for the first time in years, “last night, the best sleep I’ve ever had.” He said, “My heart is so happy.” He said, “I am so free, I’m free from the guilt, “and I’m free from the sin. “And thank you, thank you for bringing it for coming “and put this cross up. “I just wanna thank you.” And he got in his truck and drove off and about two or three days a week for the rest of the time I was at the cross, he would stop get out of his truck, run down, bear hug me, thanked me for the cross and we pray together, but he said, I’m free, I’m free. And that’s what happens when revival comes to your heart, by the way, about five years later, I stopped by that man’s muffler shop in Moss Point, Mississippi, just to see how he was doing. And he had pictures and Scriptures and Bibles everywhere. He had a picture of that cross on his computer, he would show it to people when they came in, this is five years later. He had tracts, he had Bibles, he was sharing Christ with everybody, and he was still just lit up with the freedom and the joy that he felt. So when revival comes, there is a freedom and a joy that is just unbridled because you’ve confessed, you’ve repented, you’ve been broken, you’ve been humbled. And you’ve gotten right with everybody and that you can get right with. Now there’s nothing holding you back. And there’s that tremendous freedom that comes from that. Remember Nehemiah said, “The joy of the Lord is our strength.” And if that’s the case, I know a lot of churches that couldn’t whip a sick rabbit because there’s just no joy. But when revival comes, there will be that joy. All right, let’s look at the fifth characteristic, now we’re gonna pick up the pace a little bit ’cause we were moving on in time. The fifth characteristic of revival is a renewal of our first love for Jesus and a deep sense of the Lordship of Jesus Christ. So I will say that any so-called revival that does not exalt Christ or that exalts anything or anyone above Jesus Christ is not a Spirit-led revival. Remember now the Holy Spirit stands on the sideline and points to Jesus. Jesus said, when He comes, He will not speak of himself. He’ll testify of me, so a genuine revival is a Christ-centered revival. One of the most complimented churches in the Book of Revelation, the seven churches of Asia Minor was the church in Ephesus in Revelation 2:1-7. If that church existed in today’s world, it would be a five-star church, it would win every award. Jesus said to this church, I know your works, so they were a working church. He said, I know your labor, they were a laboring church. He said, I know your patients, they were a patient church that you cannot bear those that are evil, it was a separated church, a holy church. You’ve tested those who say they are apostles and are not, they were a discerning church. You have persevered, they were a persevering church. You have patients and have labored, and have not become weary again, they were a busy working church. I mean, most of us would love to pastor a church like that, right? But then Jesus says this, I have somewhat against thee, why Jesus, what do you have against this church? It’s the five-star church. They’re busy, they’re working, they’re laboring, they’re patient, they’re discerning. He said, but you have left your first love, right there we know that Christianity is not about what you do, it’s about who you love. it’s about, it’s about your relationship with Jesus Christ. And so in an unrevived state, it’s easy to substitute works for love. But one of the characteristics of a genuine revival is that the love of Jesus just bubbles up within you, there is a deep sense of His Lordship in your life, and you become obedient to Him. It’s easy to love the work of the Lord and not love the Lord of the work. But Jesus condemned that. And so I remember reading about Adrian Rogers and Joseph Todd, Joseph Todd was the spiritual hero of Romania. And Adrian Rogers was riding in a car with him in Romania. And he said to Joseph Todd, he said, “Joseph, tell me about, tell me what you think ‘about American Christianity.” And Joseph said, “Adrian, I’d rather not.” And he said, “No, I want you to, I want you to tell me, “I want to know.” He said, “Well, since you’ve asked me, I’ll tell you.” He said, “The key word in American Christianity “is commitment, that’s what you all talk about.’ And Adrian Rogers said, “Well, that’s a good thing, “isn’t it Joseph?” And he said, “No, it’s not.” He said as a matter of fact, the word commitment didn’t come into great usage in the English language until about the 1960s. And he says, “In Romania, “we don’t even have a word to translate the word commitment. “If you use that word in your sermon tonight, “I won’t be able to translate it for you. “I don’t have a proper word for that.” And when a new word comes into usage, it usually pushes an old word out. He said, “Adrian, do you know the word “that the word commitment ‘in American Christianity pushed out and replaced?” Adrian said, “No, what is it?” He said, “It’s the word, surrender, surrender.” Adrian Rogers said, “Joseph, what’s the difference “between commitment and surrender?” Joseph Todd said, “When you make a commitment to something, “you are still in control, “whether it’s you’re committing to a diet “or committing to read a book “or committing to witness for 10 days, “you are the one still in control.” And Americans like being in control. But he said, “When somebody sticks a gun in your face “and says, surrender, you throw your hands up “and say, I surrender it’s over. “You do whatever they tell you to do, “you’re not committing to anything, “you don’t tell him what you’re committed to, “you surrender.” Joseph Todd said, “The key word in revival is surrender. “We’re to be slaves of the Lord, Jesus Christ.” And I think that’s a really good way of looking at it, we like commitment, we like being in control, but we don’t like to surrender. And yet revival is about renewal of the Lordship of Jesus Christ in our life. There simply can be no revival without a new commitment and understanding of the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Let’s look at the sixth characteristic of genuine revival, it is a new passion and urgency in prayer. There’s never been a revival without prayer. Now there have been some revival that have taken place without preaching. There’s never been a revival without prayer. The Great Welsh Revival was not characterized by great preachers, it was characterized by great pray. Same is true with the revival of 1857/58, Jeremiah Lamphere seeing the worried looks on the faces of businessman, walking down the streets in New York City decided maybe we should have a prayer time. So he sets a prayer meeting up at noon on Wednesday and invites people to come, and there were only five people that showed up at the last minute in the North Dutch Reform Church in New York City, and five in that first prayer meeting, but the next week they had 20 and the next week they had 40, and the next week, they had 100. And within five weeks, they were 150 of those kinds of prayer meetings going on in New York City. And you have to know that you cannot puncture heaven with that kind of prayer without people being saved without revival coming in, revival came and in just a matter of weeks, 50,000 people had been saved in that hall, in that New York City area. And then just within a few weeks more, it was 90,000 people swept into the kingdom of God and revival spread all over New England, and then down the Eastern Seaboard, it affected the Naval ships coming in. Captains would be saved, whole crews would be saved when they hit kind of a fire zone out off the Eastern Seaboard, and it even got as far down into Alabama, great results from the revival of 1857. And it started with urgency in prayer. Same is true with the Great Welsh Revival. Same is true with the revival on the Island of Lewis. Everybody thinks that the revival of the Island of Lewis was started by Duncan Campbell who went out there in 1949. Well, it happened well before Duncan Campbell ever got there. Have you ever heard of two sisters that lived in the little town of Barvas on the Island of Lewis? Two sisters, Peggy and Christine Smith, 84 and 82 years old. Peggy was blind, Christine was bent over with arthritis, but those ladies love the Lord. And they were concerned about their church in Barvas that was dead, spiritually dead, nobody coming here, nobody getting saved. Young people wouldn’t even come to church. So they decided to start praying three nights a week from 10 pm to 3 am, and they heard God speak a verse to them. I believe it’s Isaiah 44, passage Isaiah 44, where God talks about, I will pour out my Spirit upon the people like water upon drying thirsty land. And they began to claim that verse, and Peggy then challenged her pastor to take some men and to begin to pray at the same time, they were praying three nights a week. And so these men went out into a barn on the outskirts of the village of Barvas. And in that barn, they would begin to pray 10 pm to 3 pm, cry out to God night after night, week after week. And after being out there for several weeks praying in that barn way into the wee hours of the morning, one morning, one of those men stood up and a typical British idiom said, “Being this is rubbish, “what if we’re the ones hindering revival?” And he read or quoted Psalm 24, “Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord “and who will stand in His holy place, “he that have clean hands and a pure heart “and has not lifted up his soul to an idol.” And then that man lifted his hands up and he said, “God, are my hands clean? “God, is my heart clean?” And at that moment, the Spirit fell upon those men in that barn. And they were smitten to the ground and they cried out to God in repentance and confession of sin. And they wept before the Lord till almost daybreak. And they left that barn, walked back into the village and saw an amazing thing. What happened in that barn, it happened all over that village, the Spirit had fallen, God Spirit was poured out. People had gotten up out of their sleep, three and four o’clock in the morning, had made their way in their nightclothes out into the street, and we’re kneeling along the street, crying out to God trying to get saved. And as they, as these men walked back into the village, they were astonished to see this happening. And they realized that revival had hit, Spirit had been poured out. So they saw a great mass of people moving toward of all places, the police station, not the church, but at the police, why the police station? Well, there was a constable there who was a godly man and they were seeking him out. And maybe it had to do with the fact that those two sisters that had been praying for revival lived right next door to the police station. But that’s where several hundred people gathered. And before that night was over, revival had broken loose, and in that entire village, I mean, almost everybody was saved. It was an incredible revival on the Island of Lewis. And it came because of prayer. Now, J. Edwin Orr is one of the greatest revival historians in modern day history, and J. Edwin Orr says almost all revivals have occurred when just one to 11 people get thoroughly right with God. It doesn’t take a lot of people for revival to come. In fact, I think it just the leadership of a church would get right, thoroughly right, revival would come. I think if the leadership of our nation got right and our churches got right, we would see revival. I think God is more anxious to bring revival that we are to have it, and we’re suck without it folks, we need to understand, we don’t just need revival for cosmetic looks, we don’t need it for convenience, we need it for survival, it’s revival for survival. And so there’s a new urgency in prayer, and you understand that praying, and praying becomes precious to the people. Matthew Henry said, when God intends of blessing for His people, He sets them of praying and that’s where revival begins. So the seventh characteristic of revival is that God’s Word becomes precious. When revival comes, believers begin to delight in the Word of God like never before, when the Spirit is poured out and people are revived, they cling to His word and His word becomes precious. You know, there’s a great poem called “The Precious Book”, it says, though the cover is worn and the pages are torn and though places bare traces of tears, yet more precious than gold is the book worn in old that can shatter and scatter my fears. When I prayerfully look in this precious old book, many pleasures and treasures, I see many tokens of love from the Father above who is nearest and dearest to me. This old book has been my God, has been my God, it is a friend by my side. It will lighten and brighten my way and each new promise I find soothes and gladdens my mind as I read it and heed it today. Is your Bible precious to you? Is the Word of God precious to you? So the Word of God in times of revival becomes precious, but not only that, it also becomes authoritative. When God’s Spirit is poured out in revival, God’s Word is exalted. The Spirit will always magnify Christ and exalted His word. And the word is authoritative over man’s experience, So many of our so-called revivals today center around human experience and emotion and sensationalism rather than the authority of God’s Word. I’m amazed at what I see on YouTube and these churches that are having gold dust and clouds of gold glitter and stuff, and people are falling for that stuff. I’m disturbed by the westernization of Christianity that we’re seeing today in the lack of discernment in the 21st century church. I wonder if it’s because we’re so biblically illiterate today that we become modern day fulfillments of P.T Barnum’s statement, there’s a sucker born every minute. And I sometimes think that that describes the church of Jesus Christ. At times we just buy into everything, and the reason we do that is because we don’t believe the Word of God is authoritative enough or powerful enough to change people’s lives without us put in some additives in it, so it’ll splutter along. I wanna tell you the Gospel of Jesus Christ doesn’t need your additives to change people’s lives. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is powerful, the Word of God is powerful, it’s authoritative, infallible, inerrant, perfect and eternal. And so when revival comes, you’re going to see, you will always see God’s Word exalted and prayer becomes precious. The eighth characteristic of revival is more passionate worship and a pure worship. In seasons of revival, worship will take on a new dynamic. If you’ve ever been involved in revival, you know the singing is different, the worship is different, people are weeping and songs that we use, we would sing with dry eyes and dry hearts now break our hearts and we weep, that’s what happens in revival. The first guy that got saved when I went to the cross and spent 100 days on day five, a drunk drove his truck up the wrong side of a four-lane highway to get to that cross, and we got out of his truck, he stumbled sideways and fell into the ditch. We got him up out of the ditch and sat him in a chair underneath the cross. And for 45 minutes, he poured out one of the saddest stories I’ve ever heard of how you become an alcoholic. But I shared the gospel with him and he accepted Christ. And I drove him home ’cause I didn’t think he was able to drive. And I sent him my friend that came and picked me up. I said, I don’t think you’ll remember tomorrow what he did today. O, ye of little faith. Sunday morning I was standing in front of my little church, welcoming people and here come a guy across the parking lot. I almost didn’t recognize him, he was dressed nicely. The guy that came to the cross smelled terrible, had a t-shirt stained with holes in it, cut off blue jeans and a pair of dress shoes with no socks and shoes were on the wrong feet, that was the guy that came to the cross. But the guy that came to my church two days later was dressed nicely, had a nice shirt, had a blazer on. I said, “Jesse, is that you?” He said, “It’s me preacher.” He said, “I’ve still got the shakes, “but I hadn’t touched a drop of alcohol “since I went to the cross and got saved.” He came in the church and we sang. And every song we sang, he take his glasses off and wiped the tears, he was weeping, he was joyful, but he was weeping. That’s what happens with worship when revival comes. So the Bible opens with a worship service in the Garden of Eden, the Bible closes with a worship service in the Book of Revelation. And in the Great Welsh Revival, worship was a magnificent thing. In fact, many of the churches that filled up with people had no preacher. Sometimes they’d be four or five, six, 800 people there and no preacher, and somebody would stand up and start testifying or somebody in one case, a man, an older man stood up and began to sing the great hymn, hear his love vast as the ocean. And if you’ve never read the words of that hymn or heard that hymn, it became known as the great love song of the Welsh Revival, here is love vast as the ocean. Let me just read second verse of that hymn. It says on the Mount of crucifixion, fountains open deep and wide through the flood gates of God’s mercy flowed a vast and gracious time. Grace and love like mighty rivers poured incessant from above in heaven’s peace and perfect justice kiss the guilty world with love . Those are some powerful lyrics and that became the love song of the great revival, Great Welsh Revival. And there is the sense of worship that changes when revival comes, and we wanna bow before God, we wanna kneel before God. Read the Book of Revelation and watch John. You know what John does throughout the Book of Revelation? He just keeps falling on his face. I mean, every time he’s fallen on his face in front of Jesus. And one time, a couple of times in front of an angel, thinking that that was Jesus and angel said, I’m not, stand up, but John was falling on his face, that’s pretty much the posture of worship. And it’s interesting to me that when I watch these guys on TV, slaying people in the spirit, they always fall backwards. But in the Scriptures, when somebody is falling before Jesus they’re falling on their face, you might think about that a little bit, they’re always slaying them backwards, always going backwards. I don’t think that is the genuine work of the Holy Spirit. So the Bible says that worship is affected by revival, so number nine, we’re gonna bring this to a close pretty quickly, the ninth characteristic of a genuine revival, and I’ve been wanting to get to this one is spontaneous and enthusiastic spreading of the gospel. If revival takes place, I will tell you what’s gonna happen. Whatever else happens among other things that might happen, you’re gonna get on fire for telling people about Jesus, you’re gonna spread the gospel, every time in the Bible, every time the New Testament when the spirit would fall, people would go out telling people the gospel, evangelism rises like cream to the top when revival takes place. And history bears witness that more souls are ushered into the kingdom of God during seasons of revival than at any other time. Listen, if the church were to get revived today, we’d see more people saved by accident than we could ever get saved on purpose in an unrevived state. In my first pastorate, just a young kid preacher didn’t know anything, but the gospel and how to tell people about Jesus. And we had seen some people say, but we had this revival meeting, and this is back in the early ’80s and this little church that had ran 33 when I went there and had grown a little bit in first year, but we were seeing some positive things happen, but we had a revival meeting and we had a touch at revival breakout on the second night, we had 17 people saved that second night. And I mean something was happening, I couldn’t, I had no control over it. I didn’t know, I was just hanging on, the next night we had 17 people saved, 33 people saved in two nights, it was an amazing spirit of revival. And when that revival was over, our people were so fired up about telling people about Jesus. They went everywhere telling people about Jesus, so this little church that ran 33 and then was running maybe 50 or 60 at that time in the following year after we’d had that revival breakout in our church, we saw over 100 people saved. I baptized 95 of them, and we were in the top three or four in the state of Mississippi in baptisms. And I didn’t even know anybody kept records like that. I wouldn’t raise baptist, so I didn’t know. So we had 95 baptisms, over 100 people saved. And 87 other people that joined our church by letter. So suddenly we’re running, you know, we’re running 275 in Sunday school, whereas a year or so before we running 30 and 40, you can’t explain that except in terms of a supernatural God pouring His Spirit out upon His people. Certainly wasn’t because of the pastor, because I didn’t know what I was doing. I was just hanging on. I mean, it was a wonderful experience, but this is what happens when revival comes, people get excited about the gospel and sharing. Bill McLeod, pastor in whose church, the Great Canadian Revival was birthed made this statement. He said, “Remember this in times of evangelism, “evangelists seek sinners, “but in times of revival, sinners seek the Lord.” So when revival comes, you can bank on this, sinners will get saved and Christians will get excited about telling people about Jesus. Let me just say this. There are more people out there who want to hear the gospel than there are Christians in our church willing to tell them, and that’s sad because the gospel is the only thing that can change a person’s heart. So we need to be, we need to seek the Lord for revival so that our church can just overflow with the Spirit of God. And so that when we’re filled with the Spirit, we go out in the power of the Spirit and we tell people about Jesus Christ. Somebody said, you can’t spell God without spelling go, you can’t spell good without spelling go, and you can’t spell gospel without spelling go. And a good two-word sermon is God, G-O says, go G-O, God. And Satan says, sat, S-A-T. So that’s the choice of our churches, you either gonna go or you gonna sat. And only one them is a result of revival, 100,000 souls a day are passing one by one away in Christless guilt and gloom, O church of Christ what will thou say when on that awful judgment day, they charge thee with their doom. So when revival comes, we’re gonna be soul winners and that’s still a good word, we’re gonna be evangelists. So the 10th and final characteristic of a genuine revival is a significant impact upon the community at large. We see this evidence in the Great Welsh Revival, on the Island of Lewis when I mentioned that in 1949, the bars all closed down, the court rooms closed down because there was no crime. The policemen formed quartets to sing gospel songs because there was no crime, no one for them to arrest. And the mules had to be retrained because their masters weren’t using profanity anymore. So this is the atmosphere, and when revival comes to a church or to a community, the whole atmosphere is changed. And the result of all of this revival took place in Wales was undeniable. The names of those that were saved were listed in the newspapers. It was an amazing thing, here’s what Duncan Campbell said in the nature of a God sent revival. He said, “The difference in successful evangelism “and revival is this, in evangelism the two, the three, “the 10, the 20, and possibly the 100 make confessions ‘of Jesus Christ, and at the end of the year, “you’re thankful if half of them are still standing, “but the community remains untouched, “the public houses are crowded, “the dance ballrooms are pack, “theater and public picture houses are patronized “by the hundreds, no change in the community, “but in revival, when God, the Holy Ghost comes, “when the winds of heaven blow, “suddenly the whole community becomes God-conscious. “A God realization takes hold of young, middle-aged and old, “so that as in the case of the Hebrides revival, “75% of those saved one night were saved “before they ever came near a meeting house. “Speaking of the island of Berneray, “again the Welsh Revival, “I questioned if there was one single house ‘on the Island that wasn’t visited that night, “and awareness of God, “a consciousness of God seemed to hover “over the very atmosphere, “and the atmosphere was charged “with the power of Almighty God, that is revival.” So remember the phrase that came out of the Welsh Revival I started with tonight, once you’ve experienced the fire, you’re never satisfied with the smoke. I will tell you, I’m hungry for the fire. I’m hungry for the fire. I don’t wanna be satisfied with the smoke. Well, let me close tonight with something I read in a book that touched me. It was about a Ugandan pastor who attended a conference on revival at the Moody Bible Institute in 2011. And he asked if he could speak, if he could say something and then ask a question. And they said, yes. And he stood up and he said, “In Uganda, we are experiencing genuine revival, “but it came at a price.” He said, “We ignored all the warnings “and we didn’t seek God, and so God allow great devastation “to come to our country, “and there was horrible atrocities that were committed. “And out of that, the church repented “and the church had revival.” And he said, “I wanna tell you that today, “the church is praying for America. “The Ugandan church is praying for America “to have revival because they know “that if revival comes to America, “it will quickly spread around the world.” And he said, “But we also know that revival only comes one “of two ways.” And he said, “You know, revival can come “through desperation or it can come through devastation.” For us, he said it was devastation. So my question is, what are you Christian leaders in America doing to foster a spirit of desperation so that you don’t have to experience devastation before revival comes? What a great question in our day, what are we experiencing today? And could it get much worse, we need to be praying that God would give us a spirit of desperation for revival so that we don’t have to experience devastation beyond what we’re already experiencing.

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