I Was Just Thinking About – AWAKENING (Part 5)
Today’s Blog may be the last entry on the subject of Awakening. In a soon to be published book (currently in the hands of proof-readers), these Blogs are expanded under different titles: To Know and To Make Known; The Image Of God In Man; Spiritual Awakening; Desperate For An Awakening; and Leadership Awakening. This Blog would be titled in the Book: Our Heart Cry For Revival: Real Or Fictional?
In 2005, Dr. Stephen Olford published a book: “Heart Cry for Revival: What Revivals Teach Us for Today.” He wrote: “Never was a church-wide, heaven-sent revival needed than at this present time. It is the only answer to the spiritual warfare we face in every part of the world. Bombs, bullets and body bags will never stem the tide of terror and horror that threatens human existence. We must recognize that: ‘the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ’ (II Corinthians 10:4-5).”
The last chapter of my soon to be published book contains the following: “There is also a need to consider and evaluate the “leaders” of the particular congregation. Are they godly men of vision and prayer? A goal for leadership is summarized in Acts 6:4, “Brothers and sisters, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them.” Was this a good decision? Would there be a good result from this action? There are a series of summary verses in the Book of Acts that characterize the result of a praying church and leadership. Can ordinary men accomplish the extraordinary in the name of Christ?
A first summary answer given is in Acts 6:6-7 (ESV), “The apostles prayed and laid their hands on them. And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.”
A second summary verse is Acts 9:31 (BSB), “Then the church throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria experienced a time of peace. It grew in strength and numbers, living in the fear of the Lord and the encouragement of the Holy Spirit.”
A third summary is Acts 12:23-24, “Herod, who opposed the Gospel and Paul refused to give glory to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down…But the word of God continued to spread and multiply. In the midst of challenge and adversity, God honored His Word, the Holy Spirit moved among the people, and rather that eradication there was multiplication.
A fourth summary is Acts 16:4-5, “As they went from town to town, they delivered the decisions handed down by the apostles and elders in Jerusalem for the people to obey. So, the churches were strengthened in the faith and grew daily in numbers.” The key words in this summary are “strengthened” and “grew daily in numbers.”
What do you think? Can this happen in your local Church, Community, Area? Has it ever been considered? Is there a readiness to make changes? When was the last time this criterion was the standard for spiritual leadership in your Church? Recently? Ever?
Prayerfully – consider these things with me.