Month: November 2015

What Is Revival?

Already Not Yet

From Justin Taylor:

Here is how J. I. Packer answers that question in his essay, “The Glory of God and the Reviving of Religion” in A God-Entranced Vision of All Things (pp. 100-104):

Revival is God touching minds and hearts in an arresting, devastating, exalting way, to draw them to himself through working from the inside out rather than from the outside in.

It is God accelerating, intensifying, and extending the work of grace that goes on in every Christian’s life, but is sometimes overshadowed and somewhat smothered by the impact of other forces.

It is the near presence of God giving new power to the gospel of sin and grace.

It is the Holy Spirit sensitizing souls to divine realities and so generating deep-level responses to God in the form of faith and repentance, praise and prayer, love and joy, works of benevolence and service and initiatives of…

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Five marks of revived churches

Already Not Yet

packer_podium

Ray Ortlund:

J. I. Packer, writing in God in our Midst (Ann Arbor, 1987), pages 24-35, proposes that, among the variety of God’s ways, five constants appear in biblical revivals:

1.  Awareness of God’s presence: “The first and fundamental feature in renewal is the sense that God has drawn awesomely near in his holiness, mercy and might.”

2.  Responsiveness to God’s Word: “The message of Scripture which previously was making only a superficial impact, if that, now searches its hearers and readers to the depth of their being.”

3.  Sensitiveness to sin: “Consciences become tender and a profound humbling takes place.”

4.  Liveliness in community: “Love and generosity, unity and joy, assurance and boldness, a spirit of praise and prayer, and a passion to reach out to win others, are recurring marks of renewed communities.”

5.  Fruitfulness in testimony: “Christians proclaim by word and deed the power of the…

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Daily Light [Evening]

Three Iron Nails

He … is called: Extraordinary Strategist. – Isa 9:6 NET

The Lord’s spirit will rest on him – a spirit that gives extraordinary wisdom, a spirit that provides the ability to execute plans, a spirit that produces absolute loyalty to the Lord. He will take delight in obeying the Lord.

Does not wisdom call out? Does not understanding raise her voice?… To you, O people, I call out, and my voice calls to all mankind. You who are naive, discern wisdom! And you fools, understand discernment! Listen, for I will speak excellent things, and my lips will utter what is right…. Counsel and sound wisdom belong to me; I possess understanding and might.

The Lord who commands armies, … gives supernatural guidance and imparts great wisdom.—If anyone is deficient in wisdom, he should ask God, who gives to all generously and without reprimand, and it will be given to him.—Trust…

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Wake Up and look around you…

Iron Sharpens Iron, Men Strengthen Men

ironsharpensiron555x268

Many churches of all persuasions are hiring research agencies to poll neighborhoods, asking what kind of church they prefer. Then the local churches design themselves to fit the desires of the people. True faith in God that demands selflessness is being replaced by trendy religion that serves the selfish.

Billy Graham

So I read this quote from Billy Graham today and it hit me over the head like a hammer. In the back of my mind I may have known churches were doing this but I never fully understood the reason why. Guys simply put, if we tailor our religion to only what we want to hear, or rather only a “feel good” message, God cant help us because we are to busy enjoying ourselves to hear Him.

This idea behind what Billy Graham is saying was never Gods intent for our Christian walk. But I do think it is…

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Another Prayer for Revival

“Oh, revive us!  Then, Your people can rejoice in You again.”  [Psalm 85:5]

Dear Lord, revive Your people as the Spirit speaks to and through Your messengers on the Lord’s Day. May Jesus Christ be praised and lives renewed by Your Spirit. In Jesus Name. Amen.

Growing Downward While Looking Up

ChosenRebel's Blog

Saturday Musings

John Piper describes Charles Simeon’s growth in grace this way:

“he ‘grew downward’ in humility
and upward in his adoration of Christ.”

Collected Works of Charles Simeon Collected Works of Charles Simeon

It was this dual and simultaneous growth that Piper attributes to Simeon’s never yielding to bitterness or to the temptation to never leave his congregation for 54 years. This, despite the fact that the first 12 years were filled with reviling, persecution, and disrespect not only from the congregation but from all of his colleagues at the University. He stayed, because he “‘grew downward’ in humility and upward in his adoration of Christ.”

Most modern day pastors and church planters as well all the rest of the body of Christ in America will never experience anything approaching what Simeon experienced but we can learn from his life. What is the secret to enduring through the trials and curveballs of life? How do…

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