I was recently musing over a request in a pastors forum for books on Revival. I never did quite determine if it was a history of revivals that the pastor was looking for but what happened as people started listing titles and Authors… and then I noticed something. Almost all the titles being offered were “why revival doesn’t come.” books. Why doesn’t revival happen in America? Why don’t we see another great revival again? Well to begin with, no one repents any more.
Revival starts with repentance.
2 Corinthians 7:1 (ESV) — Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.
The world in the church keeps looking for revival from the outside. So busy finding new methods, new butts in the seat, new members of their social engagements that they have missed even their own repentance. Could you imagine that being written on a tomb stone? “Once to busy to repent, now to late to repent.”
I would argue that revival comes from a place of personal REPENTANCE and PRAYER. It starts with you an me, there is a hope in Christ and the power of the Spirit at work in our lives. This hope provides us a foundation for godly living. It also provides us a constant awareness of our sin, not in a way that makes us walk with shame, but in a way that leads us back to the feet of the Master.
2 Corinthians 7:10–11a (ESV) — For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death. 11 For see what earnestness this godly grief has produced in you, but also what eagerness to clear yourselves, what indignation, what fear, what longing, what zeal, what punishment!
Repentance is a response to the Gospel in the power of Christ.
Want to see a revival? Start by asking God for ‘godly grief’ over your sin.