At Beulah Baptist Church, we had revival this past week (May 6-8) and in many ways was anticipating great things. I had gotten word that it had been a little while since there had been a revival so I was anxious to get things going. Revival (meetings) have proven to be profitable for local churches throughout history, but like anything else, have also presented their fair share of pitfalls–at least at times. One of these pitfalls, among others, is an emotional roller coaster that leaves souls (or greater, the church) in a bigger fix than they were before entering the revival. They set their mind on sensual things that may, or may not, happen during that scheduled meeting and then benchmark their existence as a church on that particular revival.
Make no mistake about it–Revival is a good (and NEEDED) experience for the believer and the church. Repentance. Turning from our wicked ways. Pursuing Holiness. Killing sin. Walking in the Spirit. Restoration. Total, unhindered surrender to Almighty God.
I certainly hope and pray that believers and members at Beulah Baptist church practiced repentance this week. I am under the conviction that revival is FOR the church. You can’t revive something that is dead. Dead things, are well, dead. Drive down the road a little ways and you see dead snakes, coons, squirrels…well you get the point. They are dead. Nothing is going to help them.
Ephesians 2:1 states, “And you were dead in your trespasses and sin” (HCSB). At revival this week (on the last night) there were 3 professions of faith. They did not experience revival. The experience NEW LIFE! (2 Corinthians 5:17) I bring this out because these were 3 young people. I know we sometimes get the thrill of seeing the “worst” man come forward and get saved. The reality is that when ANYBODY gets saved, it is a miracle, being born again by the Spirit of God. No matter how good you think you are (Romans 3:10) or how bad you think you are (1 Timothy 1:12-17), you need Christ as your salvation.
Here’s what I’ve been pondering about this particular revival. These 3 young people have been raised in church, under the preaching of the Gospel, and supervision of their families. These 3 young people have been at activities at church (such as Upward, VBS, Fall Fesitivals, etc.) and have seen ( I HOPE) the demonstration of the love of Christ. These 3 young people have heard about Jesus, about how He lived a sinless, perfect life, about how He suffered in the hand of sinful men, about how He died on Calvary’s hill, about how He was put in a borrowed tomb to only rise again three days later, and about how He lives forevermore, seated at the right hand of the Father in Heaven. Parents have prayed and watched. Sunday School teachers have prayed, taught, and, as clearly as they know how, told them about Jesus and His salvation and watched. Children’s leaders have prayed, prepared, and proclaimed the glorious riches and watched. Preachers have prayed, preached, and ministered to them and watched. Last night (May 8th) at Beulah Baptist Church, all things come full circle for 3 young people. They experienced the King of kings and Lord of lords. They were born again by the Spirit of God and given new life in Christ. They are free!
What is my takeaway from this revival? I believe it can be best stated by what the Apostle Paul said to the church at Corinth in 1 Corinthians 3:5-8:
“Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one? 6 I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. 7 So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. 8 Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor.” (NKJV-Copied from Logos Bible Software)
As a church body, we should be eternally grateful! Some planted. Others Watered. We are nothing. He (God) is EVERYTHING! Last night we seen that God gives the increase–to the praise of His Glory. To me, what an awesome way to end a revival. No unneeded hype. No manipulation. No. May we stay the course, dear saints. Let’s continue to work together for the glory of God; planting, watering, but ultimately watching God give the increase. Let’s get out of the way by ultimately being faithful to the end of His eternal purpose for our lives.