Tuesday, January 10, 2017
(1) Revival cannot be scheduled. Revival cannot be predicted, but neither can it be precluded. There simply are no natural laws that guarantee revival. True revival is a sovereign work of God (Zech. 4:6). In other words, revival is always a miracle. Revival is not "in our pocket." Once we fall into the trap of thinking that revival is at our beck-and-call, we will begin to develop earthly strategies that we are convinced will produce the desired end. We will become sinfully pragmatic in the business of religion, as we justify virtually any tactic or method just so long as it gets "results". But this is precisely what we must avoid at all costs.
(2) Someone has defined revival as "a copious effusion of the influence of divine grace," i.e., a bountiful outpouring of the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. J. I. Packer defines revival as "a work of God by his Spirit through his word bringing the spiritually dead to living faith in Christ and renewing the inner life of Christians who have grown slack and sleepy" (Revival, 36). Or again, "Revival is God stirring the hearts of his people, visiting them . . . coming to dwell with them . . . returning to them . . . pouring out his Spirit on them . . . to quicken their consciences, show them their sins, and exalt his mercy . . . before their eyes" (Keep in Step with the Spirit, 256).
(3) True revival is a surprising work of God. This is because revival is a gracious work of God. No one deserves revival. One may never expect what one does not deserve. If God were not to send revival, no one could protest that an injustice had been done. That is why we must never demand revival, as if God were in our debt. God is not obligated to visit us with the refreshing waters of his presence. That he occasionally does is an expression of mercy. It is the compassion and loving kindness of God that accounts for revival. image
Full article here
More Observations on the Nature of True Revival
Added 1/12/17: A Dozen Additional Thoughts on the Nature of Revival and How People Respond to It
Sunday, December 25, 2016
Rejoice; for, to us is born a Physician, to make sinners pure from sin, to deliver them from the power of Satan, to redeem them from eternal damnation, to impart to all a heavenly joy, that glory may be to God on high, and on earth peace, good-will toward men.
Rejoice; for, to us is born a King, to fill us with joy; a High Priest, to pour on believers the Divine blessing; a Father, to adopt us as his children for all eternity. To us is born a well-beloved Brother, a Master in every kind of knowledge, a veritable Chief, a Judge of most perfect equity, that glory may be to God on high, and on earth peace, good-will toward men.
Rejoice, sinners, for He who is born is the Son of God, the High Priest who absolves all that repent, in order that glory may be to God on high, and on earth peace, good-will toward men. ...John Huss image
Saturday, December 24, 2016
Lo, God, our God has come!
To us a Child is born,
To us a Son is given;
Bless, bless the blessed morn!
O happy, lowly lofty birth,
Now God, our God, has come to earth!
Rejoice, our God has come!
In love and lowliness;
The Son of God has come
The sons of men to bless.
God with us now descend to dwell,
God in our flesh, Immanuel.
Praise ye the word made flesh!
True God, true man is He.
Praise ye the Christ of God!
To Him all glory be.
Praise ye the Lamb that once was slain,
Praise ye the king that comes to reign.
...Horatius Bonar image
Friday, December 23, 2016
Monday, December 19, 2016
Friday, December 16, 2016
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
Just Drop the Blanket: The Moment You Never Noticed in A Charlie Brown Christmas ...Looking at it now, it is pretty clear what Charles Schultz was saying, and it's so simple it's brilliant.
The birth of Jesus separates us from our fears.
The birth of Jesus frees us from the habits we are unable (or unwilling) to break ourselves.
The birth of Jesus allows us to simply drop the false security we have been grasping so tightly, and learn to trust and cling to Him instead...
Anne Kennedy: Dear Baby God, Help Us To Stop Freaking Out ...Humanity is Evil y’all. It just is. That’s why we have to celebrate Christmas. That’s what Christmas is For–to admit that we all blew it So Badly that God could come to earth as a literal human baby and still be stronger than all our capacity to correct our own course. This should be humiliating, but also pretty great. We might as well nestle back in our couches, or our refugee cots, and drink whatever we can get our hands on (well…maybe not whatever) and rejoice that God is strong enough to deal, even as a baby. And he isn’t a baby any more! He’s in heaven, glorified, powerful, ready to judge us all whenever we hit that sweet terrifying moment...