Saturday, November 11, 2006

The Church Must First Repent

"Little by little, the church loses its grip on essential things, becomes a social club, goes to sleep or flies off at a tangent. All over the world we find sleeping churches, and all round them are the gospel-starved masses. Instead of performing the first thing of importance, evangelising the masses, they are engaged in a bewildering variety of pastimes--anything but the real thing. It has pleased the Lord to intervene at times to bring back His people to a more normal life. This is called revival. Revival, it must be noted, is solely the concern of believers, and is not an evangelistic campaign as many seem to think, although such a gospel effort may be the outcome of revival among Christians.

The greatest need of the churches today is revival."

"Revival has always begun through the obedience of individuals. Four young men, together with individuals scattered throughout the Province, prayed down the Ulster Revival Of 1859. Evan Roberts and other individual servants of God prayed down the Welsh Revival Of 1904. God lit little fires here and there, in individual homes, and when they became numerous the place went on fire. Andrew Gih, listening to a plea made by Paget Wilkes, in Shanghai, did not wait until the rest of China was moved. He opened his heart to revival, and God has been using him as a revivalist ever since. Instances could be multiplied."

"Thus we see the greatest tragedy of all--this paralyzing, deadly backsliding is wholly unnecessary, wholly uncalled for. At any time, an individual or a church may receive "blessing that there shall not be room enough to receive it."

Sin is very deceptive. The backslider or backsliding Church makes all the excuses possible for the deplorable state of backsliding and powerlessness. There may be a noticeable amount of energy--that is all part of the pretence. Backsliders see so few better than themselves that they begin to feel secure--they lull themselves to sleep, and snore so loudly that they cannot hear the call "Awake." But many individuals feel a sense of disappointment and failure. Their hearts are hungry for deeper blessing. Many more pretend that their lives are all right, when they are not all right. They are more dangerous than conscious backsliders, for they are always praying for blessing upon ' somebody else' , ignoring their own greater need.

The important thing to remember is repentance is the prelude to revival. The Church must first Repent."

--J. Edwin Orr, The Church Must First Repent


Blogger Henry (Rick) Frueh said...

Revival can only happen through unusual seasons of sacrificial prayer. As I look around, I don't see that happening soon. Sadly.

7:26 AM  

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