Born Again, Born Again by God's Spirit, Ephesians 2:1-6, Hot or cold?, Jeremiah 20:9, John 1:12-13, Matthew 11:28-30, Psalm 85:6-8, Revelation 3:20, Revive US again, Revive us oh Lord?, What can't be revived
What Can’t REvive??? Bible Ballistics: Vol. 20 No.02
“And you hath he quickened,
who were dead
2 Wherein in time past
according to the course of this world,
according to the prince
of the power of the air,
the spirit that now worketh
in the children of disobedience:
3 Among whom also
we all had our conversation
in times past
in the lusts of our flesh,
fulfilling the desires of the flesh
and of the mind;
and were by nature
the children of wrath,
even as others.
4 But God,
who is rich in mercy,
for his great love
wherewith he loved us,
5 Even when we were dead in sins,
hath quickened us together
(by grace ye are saved;)
6 And hath raised us up together,
and made us sit together
in heavenly places
in Christ Jesus:” Ephesians 2:1-6
I love God’s Word, it is so true, hopeful, and enlightening to help us see where we have come from, and to see how urgent it is to help others come to Jesus. The thing I want us to think about today is what does “Revival” mean? I have prayed for revival for many years and will continue to pray for it until Jesus comes, or HE allows me to see a real Holy Ghost, heaven-sent, knee-bending, sin-confessing, tear-stained altar (and sadly to me, many young people don’t even know what that is!) filling, life changing, church-altering, REVIVAL! The kind of revivals that I knew and saw as a child and a young adult that brought conviction to bear on believers to the repenting of sin, the recommitment of hearts and lives, then a world that takes note of the change!
But there is a catch!
Revival: restoration to life, consciousness, vigor, strength, etc. ….an awakening in a church….an evangelistic service or a series of services for the purpose of effecting of a religious (my word is Spiritual) awakening…
The key I want us to note is “restoration”, for to be ‘re’stored, something must exist first; and that is what Paul is pointing out to the Ephesian believers, and to us! Only when we realize that we are “dead in trespasses and sins” will we see the need to come to Jesus to be “born again”, or as Paul says here in Ephesians 2, that God has “quickened us”, in Blanche’s paraphrase, “God has given us life from the dead”, or as the Apostle John wrote in his gospel:
“But as many as received him,
to them gave he power
to become the sons of God,
even to them that believe
on his name:
13 Which were born,
not of blood,
nor of the will of the flesh,
nor of the will of man,
but of God.” John 1:12-13
It’s like what Jesus told Nicodemus in John 3, we “must be born again” by the power of God through the Holy Spirit! And my friends, if we haven’t received the new birth–NEW LIFE– from Jesus then we are still “dead in our trespasses and sins” and we can’t be “Revived”! Revival is for those who have received new life in Jesus. It is for those who know Jesus, but have grown cold toward spiritual things, or have lost their ardor, or just become muddled and confused in the fray of life and need a rekindling of the fire in their heart. Sort of like a fireplace where the coals are either close to the fire and glowing, or they have become cold with the distance between them and the fire! Jesus IS our fire!
“Wilt thou not revive us again:
that thy people may rejoice in thee?
7 Shew us thy mercy, O LORD,
and grant us thy salvation.
8 I will hear what God the LORD will speak:
for he will speak peace unto his people,
and to his saints:
but let them not turn again
to folly.” Psalm 85:6-8
God is ever at work conforming His own into the “image of His Son”; our job is to stay near to our “fire” –the fire of Holiness and truth! Jeremiah shared that he had a fire of God’s power in his life, we also have a call, a ministry, a life of obedience, and I think I understand what Jeremiah means, for God’s call is ever on my heart. I would love to be the one God calls to write the “fluff stuff”, but God has called me to often speak the hard things, may I ever hear his call and like Jeremiah speak as God directs.
“Then I said,
I will not make mention of him,
nor speak any more in his name.
But his word
was in mine heart
as a burning fire shut up in my bones,
and I was weary
and I could not stay.” Jeremiah 20:9
So, as I pray for revival amongst God’s own, won’t you join me and seek revival in your own heart–for revival must start with “ME”! How about you? And if you don’t know Jesus and are just trying to play the game, use the right words, do the right deeds, be in the right church, or belong to the right group…God wants YOU and YOUR heart not your stuff or your abilities to get to heaven. HE wants you to come through Jesus’ substitutionary, atoning, sacrifice!
I stand at the door,
if any man hear my voice,
and open the door,
I will come in to him,
and will sup with him,
and he with me.” Revelation 3:20
Jesus calls us to Himself for rest as well as life–take HIS yoke, and you’ll never walk alone!
“Come unto me,
all ye that labour and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest.
29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me;
for I am meek and lowly in heart:
and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
30 For my yoke is easy,
and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30