by David Smithers
Many Christians today are eagerly anticipating a mighty move
of God. The opportunity for a widespread revival seems to be standing at the Church's
door. This is the hour for us to lay hold of a fresh vision of the Church, empowered and
purified for Christ's sake and service. We are now in the season when the Lord is calling
forth and qualifying His vessels for revival use! (2 Tim. 2:20,21). Yet we must be
diligent and watchful, lest through negligence we miss the day of our own visitation. The
coming revival I'm speaking of is not some inanimate force or power that can be casually
manufactured and produced. True revival is a miraculous manifestation of the presence of
Jesus Christ. A revival is Christ's Kingdom come on earth in holiness and power! Such a
visitation is the direct result of the Church's passionate pursuit of Christ Himself.
Therefore, the coming of a true revival always requires diligent heart preparation on the
part of God's people. How can we prepare ourselves for the day when our sanctuaries and
communities will suddenly become the very throne room of God? How can we make the King of
Kings welcome in our midst? It is only through brokenhearted humility that we can be
prepared for such a revival visitation. "For God sets Himself against and resists the
proud, but gives continual grace to the lowly and humble." (James 4:6). "For
thus says the High and lofty One who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: I dwell in the
high and holy place, with him who has a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit
of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones." ( Is. 57:15).
Consider King Saul, who while he was little in his own eyes, received the prophet's kiss, the reviving touch of the Spirit and the honor and charge of the Kingdom. (1 Sam. 10 & 15:17). Yet later he had the Kingdom torn from him, because of his own prideful desire for the approval of men. The kingdom was little by little torn from Saul and given to David, his humble neighbor ( 1 Sam. 15: 24-28). Saul had found the Kingdom in the valley of humility and had lost it on the heights of pride and presumption. The Kingdom of God comes on earth only through the humble. In 1st Kings chapter one, we find another timely lesson for the Church concerning God's revival qualifications. The people of God were in a very vulnerable position. David, the faithful and trusted leader of Israel, was now old and had lost his strength and fire. King David's role as a leader was coming to an end, and the people were now waiting to see to whom God would entrust the Kingdom. At such times, when there is a "changing of the guard" there also comes an atmosphere of uncertainty mixed with hope and expectation. These are times of both, God given vision and fleshly activity. When God moves to prepare His people for a fresh work, the enemy is always there with another alternative and deceptive opportunity. These alternatives are almost always dressed in spiritual and religious clothes. Today, the Church is in this same position. One generation of leaders is passing off the scene, while a new generation of unknown leaders is struggling to rise to the need of the moment. Many in the Church are quite aware of this and are now waiting and watching with a mixture of hope and caution. The Church today, needs to be watchful for the enemy's deceptive alternatives and Kingdom substitutes.
During this time of David's weakness and decline, Adonijah, his son, presumptuously claimed control of the Kingdom for himself. "Then Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying 'I will be king . . .'" (1 Kings 1:5). Like Saul, Adonijah attempted to disguise his prideful and self-seeking heart with a great show of religious noise and sacrifice. He tried in vain to substitute religious sacrifice for humble submission. (1st Kings 1:5-9, 1st Sam. 15:14-24). Adonijah had foolishly forgotten the prophetic words of his humble father. "For You do not desire sacrifice or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart, these Oh God You do not despise." (Psa. 51:16,17). Adonijah, though he was David's son, was quickly disqualified and eliminated from any Kingdom use. Instead, Solomon was given charge of the Kingdom. It was Solomon's childlike humility that qualified him for Kingdom usefulness. "He prayed, 'now Oh Lord my God, You have made your servant King instead of my father David, but I am a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in.'" (1 Kings 3:7). The great difference between Adonijah and Solomon was, Adonijah proudly proclaimed himself king, Solomon humbly prayed for the strength to be king.
If our churches are going to be channels of heaven sent revival, we must come to the place of true brokenness and humility. Some may still be asking, "What does true humility look like?" The answer to this question is not found in the theologian's ivory tower, but the nursery's cradle. Surely, we have all heard of the expression "crying like a baby". The chief characteristic of a helpless child is an incessant cry for someone to do what he cannot do for himself. Prayer is the most natural posture and expression of humility. It is a direct response to our insufficiency and God's all-sufficiency. Prayer is the language of the hungry, while prayerlessness is the language of the content and self satisfied. Humble and fervent prayers are always the forerunner to true "Kingdom Come Revivals." I am deeply concerned about some of the current teaching on revival that is neglecting a CLEAR call to fervent prayer. I believe that all those who are talking about establishing the Kingdom in revival power, while failing to urge the Church to prayer, are flirting with the Adonijah spirit.
Now is not the time to be silent or slack about our
responsibility to pray for a revival. God is presently seeking for a humble, praying
people that He can pour His glory through. If we will not yield to God in humble
obedience, He will find a people who will! Some of us may have to visit someone else's
fellowship in order to experience the coming move of God. Let's not deceive ourselves, God
is not committed to use us, but He is committed to remember the prayer of the humble.
(Psa. 9:12). If we refuse to prescribe to the Christ honored methods of humility and
prayer, we will certainly be refused for the Master's use in the coming revival. We
must always remember that the prescription and description for true revival have always
been and will ever be the same. "If my people, who are called by my name (Christians)
will HUMBLE themselves, and PRAY and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I
will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sins and heal their land." (2 Chron.
7:14). Will you miss the coming revival?
From A Revival Source Center