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Revival is nothing less than a full surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

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"Lord, Send A Revival!"

Dr. Franklin L. Kirksey, pastor
First Baptist Church of Spanish Fort


2 Chronicles 7:14


INTRODUCTION

On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, our President, George W. Bush solemnly stated: “Today, we have had a national tragedy.” In an internationally televised call to Prayer and Remembrance on Friday, the Reverend Doctor Billy Graham spoke of our “horror, shock and revulsion” to the events this past Tuesday. Graham also stated, “September 11 will go down as a day to remember”. Graham reminded us that we must “confess our need of God” as we face “a new kind of enemy and a new kind of warfare”. He also emphatically stated, “We need a spiritual renewal, a spiritual revival in America”. Graham shared his that we are more united in America than ever before. For example, he told of seeing the members of Congress who stood shoulder to shoulder and sang ‘God Bless America’. Graham called our nation to “repent of our sin” and to “return to [God] and He will bless us in a new way”.

Dr. Alan Redpath stated, “I would always distinguish revival from evangelism. Although often confused, the two are entirely different. Evangelism is winning the unsaved; revival has to do with the Christian. Evangelism is the permanent duty of the church; revival is a gracious out pouring of the Spirit of God.” He goes on to say. “It is possible to have a measure of success in evangelism without ever having revival, but I do believe that genuine revival in the church would lead to a mighty blessing in evangelism, inevitably. The fact that the fruit of evangelistic witness today may be relatively small in comparison with the effort and money that are put into it is not necessarily the fruit of the evangelist. To introduce young converts into dead churches even though many of them are orthodox in doctrine, is to quench the Spirit and freeze out the fruit of a soul-saving ministry.”

The problem of man is that he is insubordinate, obstinate and plain and simply rebellious. There can be no revival unless and until the rebellious surrender.

Revival is nothing less than a full surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

Looking at our text in second Chronicles, let us examine what God wants to instill in our hearts.

I. First, The Premise

“. . . My people who are called by My name. . .” (2 Chronicles 7:14a)

This verse is written specifically to God’s people, Israel.

Someone has wisely said, “Although all Scripture is not written to us, but all Scripture is written for us.”

As the apostle Paul taught Timothy, his son in the ministry, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

Isaac Watts, the great hymnwriter, boldly expressed, “I’m not ashamed to own my Lord, Or to defend His cause.”

“. . . My people who are called by My name. . .” (2 Chronicles 7:14a) In the original the emphasis is on those who owned, or professed His name.

II. Second, The Practice

“. . . will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways. . .” (2 Chronicles 7:14b)

A. “. . .humble themselves. . .”

Revival does not come to the proud.

Micah 6:8 clearly states, "He has shown you, O man what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?"

It is written of King Uzziah in 2 Chronicles 26:16 that he ". . .was lifted up to his destruction."

James 4:6b tells us ". . .God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble."

Verse 10 goes on to say, "Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up."

1 Peter 5:5b-7 says, "Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for ‘God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.’ Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time,

casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you."

We read in Philippians 2:8 of our Lord Jesus who, ". . . humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross."

We must ask ourselves this pointed question: "Am I haughty or humble?"

B. “. . .pray. . .”

1. Selflessly

James 4:3 “You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.”

2. Earnestly

James 5:16b-18 “The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain; and it did not rain on the land for three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth produced its fruit.”

3. Definitely

Charles G. Finney, “I have prayed all night, not because God was reluctant to hear me, but because I had to get my heart ready for what God had to say.” As the old timers talk about “pray through”.

George Mueller said, “I live in the spirit of prayer. I pray as I walk about, when I lie down and when I rise up. And the answers are always coming.”

C. “. . .seek My face. . .”

The Amplified Bible brings this verse home, “Seek, crave and require of necessity My face. . .” O that we would crave the face of God most earnestly! God give us an unquenchable longing, a fervent craving, and an ever increasing hunger for You! If there is one thing the church has lost it is a hunger for God.

As Hosea the prophet tells us “. . .it is time to seek the Lord, till he come and rain righteousness upon you.”

The prophet Isaiah proclaims, “Seek the Lord while He may be found call upon Him while He is near.” (Isaiah 55:6)

The writer to the Hebrews reminds us that “. . .he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6).

According to Avery Willis, the situation of 2 Chronicles 6 and 7 involves a “Solemn Assembly” which is a call to nation wide seeking of the Lord’s face and favor.

Willis cites several passages in which this was the case. For example, Asa in 2 Chronicles 15:2; Jehoshaphat in 2 Chronicles 20; Hezekiah in 2 Chronicles 29-31; Josiah in 2 Chronicles 34 and Joel in Joel 1:14; 2:1,12-17.

D. “. . .turn from their wicked ways. . .”

The ways of some “Christians” is a stench in God’s nostrils. Their soap operas, their R--rated movies, their unholy conduct displeases God! Their foolish talking and jesting grieves the Holy Spirit. As does their unforgiveness, their bitterness, their evil speaking. Do you know that such things are evil?

Proverbs 28:13 warns, “He who covers his sin will not prosper. But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy.”

“Let the wicked forsake his way, And the unrighteous man his thoughts; Let him return to the Lord, And He will have mercy on him; And to our God, For He will abundantly pardon” (Isaiah 55:7).

If we look at the church today, not just our fellowship here but the Church in general, we are at a time when we need revival. Christians seem to have lost their passion for God, they have lost their passion to walk according to God’s commandments. Many church services are just social gatherings or entertainment.

There must be a turning from everything that is not of God.

B. B. McKinney penned these words in 1927 in the 3rd stanza of his hymn: “Lord, Send a Revival”: “Send a revival among Thine own, Help us to turn from our sins away, Let us get nearer the Father’s throne, Revive us again, we pray.”

III. Third, The Promise

“If. . .then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14c)

This is a conditional promise. It is based upon man’s trust and obedience. “If. . .” the condition is met “. . .then. . .” the changes will be made.

A. “. . .I will hear from heaven. . .”

The word “hear” in this verse means “to listen to a point where you are moved to action.” In other words He was promising to respond to their cries.

Prayer Promises:

“If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear” (Psalm 66:18).

Isaiah 59:1-2 states: “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.”

Evangelist Dwight L. Moody said of 2 Chronicles 7:14: “It brings heaven within speaking distance.”

B. “. . .I. . .will forgive their sin. . .”

Dr. Alan Redpath said that “God’s mercy with the sinner is only equalled and perhaps out matched by His patience with the saints, with you and me.”

1 John 1:9 reminds us that “If we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

C. “. . .I. . .will heal their land.”

Healing the land and sending down the showers of rain he was promising not only to cleansing their land but causing the seeds to burst forth to bring an economic revival.

We see that in many of the Great Revivals they did have an impact on the surrounding area, not just impacting those within the building in which they were held.

Avery Willis writes, “Make the connection. If we will not heed God’s warning through His Word, He’ll speak to us through His world. He will allow disasters to come upon us. . .to get our attention.”

United States President, Woodrow Wilson’s last words to the American people were these: “Our civilization cannot survive materially unless it is redeemed spiritually.”

CONCLUSION

We need revival. Are you willing to humble yourself and pray, and seek His face, and turn from your wicked ways?

Lord, Send a Revival,
Lord, Send a Revival,
Lord, Send a Revival,
And let it begin in me.


Lord, Send A Revival!
2 Chronicles 7:14

© Sermon 2005 All Rights Reserved
Dr. Franklin L. Kirksey, pastor
First Baptist Church of Spanish Fort
P.O. Box 7111 
Spanish Fort, Alabama 36577
(251) 454-3325
fkirksey@bellsouth.net

 

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