"If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land," 2 Chronicles 7:14
We sometimes quote 2 Chronicles 7:14 after sudden and tragic story is announced on the news. People might say, "We need revival." Meaning, we need to get before God and pray for repentance because repentance must come first. But, that's not what Pentecost Revival is about for believers.
What is Revival?
In Iain Murray's book, Pentecost Today? he defines it as "An outpouring of the Holy Spirit, brought about by the intercession of Christ, resulting in a new degree of life in the churches and a widespread movement of grace among the unconverted. It is an extraordinary communication of the Spirit of God, a superabundance of the Spirit’s operations, an enlargement of his manifest power.”
Hence, based on his interpretation, revival comes from God and when revival occurs, repentance will start to break out. It happens to both believers and unbelievers as they catch the fire of repentance revival. This happens in churches all the time. They invite an unbeliever and once the spirit fills the room, it hits that person, too! So we know that revival is something extraordinary and it can occur on a widespread level.
Back in 1840, Alexander Moody Stuart was describing the workings of the Holy Ghost/Holy Spirit. He said, “While the Holy Ghost is always present in His church, there are times when He draws manifestly nearer and puts forth a greater energy of power. Every believer is conscious in his own soul of changes corresponding to this; for the Spirit is always with him, abiding in him, and yet there are times of unusual communion and far more than ordinary life. And as the Spirit draws near to an individual, so does He draw near to a land, and then religion is revived, spiritual life is revived, spiritual understanding, spiritual worship, spiritual repentance, spiritual obedience.”
With this interpretation, we come to understand that true revival brings repentance revival. It's God who sends it to reawaken us as God pours out His spirit on us.
Looking back at 2 Chronicles 7:14, widespread repentance comes from God to convict us and heal our land. We've had revivals and widespread repentance before. These occurred at the First and Second Great Awakenings and the Great Revival of 1858-59. It was these revival services that led people to repent. Therefore, we know that when widespread repentance happens again, our land will be healed.
As God pours out His Spirit this Sunday and we repent, we are actually turning back to God, our First Love. Let's continue to repent and ask for God's mercy. He can rightfully judge all of us because we tolerated Jezebel, familiar spirits, and other demons for so long. We must pray for God to intercede for us and bring the repentance revival that we need in our nation. We must also pray that our nation repents and turns back to God. Doing so will lead to the global revival that we know is coming.
As we pray, let us be watchmen on the wall, “I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the Lord, give yourselves no rest, and give Him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth” Isaiah 62:6-7.
That last part is critical. I remember when David put a demand on God in the Old Testament. He reminded God of His Word. And, the Lord had us mention this before, too. We spoke months ago about spiritual droughts and how we must bring to God's remembrance HIS WORDS. Like being in a courtroom, we must use the next few days to cry out for God's Mercy and remind Him that WE as a people can't do this without Him. A pastor shared this once online. He said when you need to hear from God press in UNTIL you hear from God. Let's press in and not rest until we hear from God and He moves to heal our nation and bring us back to Him. We're starting a new chapter.
The New Chapter
Years ago, I was doing the marketing for a new church and the pastor came to me and said, "I want Jeremiah 6:16." I hadn't read this particular passage and looked it up. It reads, "Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein." When I made the banner for the church, I left out that last part of the verse because God's people DO want to walk therein.
We DO want to humble ourselves and repent before the Most High God. We DO want to fast and pray and worship Him. We DO want to groan in the spirit and seek the deep things of God and walk in the spirit all night and day crying before the walls. We DO want to cry out to God for our nation, for change, for TRUE leadership that God wants in place which can only come from the President holding God's Mantle, i.e., President Donald J. Trump. We DO want righteousness, our babies not used for sacrifices, our children not trafficked. We do want to turn on the TV or news without seeing sexual sin. We do want intimacy with God and for His Presence to rest on us and for global revival to come. Revival is coming but first must come repentance.
From now through Pentecost, please press into God like never before and rebuke those distracting snakes and demons trying to come against you and distract. Fast, pray, worship, get before Him. ONLY see God's face, okay? This devil is trying to distract because he doesn't want us worshiping God or getting to Sunday. But, "IT DOESN'T MATTER." Sunday's ALREADY here. It's ALREADY done. We're going to worship God ANYWAY and DESPITE the devil and his attacks. Keep pressing in and don't give up.
It's like a horse that wears blinders. The blinders help him to see straight in front of him because he might startle easy if he sees something approaching on either side. Fix your face forward and ONLY SEE GOD. Hallelu-Yahweh! It's a weird sentence but I'm hearing, "We can't believe to see what's He's done." God has something in the SUPERNATURAL that is coming and He's been saying it. We're going to look back and see His Hand was ALWAYS with us and He ALWAYS had a way made for us. So, don't let what you see on the news stop you from your praise and worship, okay?
When I was praying this morning, I asked Father God about mentioning this to you: It's like people are looking on the news FIRST for it to happen but remember, God works in the spirit. It comes in the spirit realm FIRST, i.e., He reveals it to His prophets FIRST. Once He says it we test the Word and ask Him to confirm it. When He does, we know that whatever it is is coming because He's confirmed it. Then it becomes manifest. So however He does what He's going to do we must RECEIVE it and know that it will come in His EXACT and appointed time. Just say, "Okay, Lord, I believe and I will wait for You." Wait for Him and His timing and keep singing to Him until He reveals it. Apart from Him, we can do nothing. Stay in His Shadow.
Smith Wigglesworth (1859-1947, UK) was known as "the Apostle of Faith." He was one of the leading pioneers who spearheaded the Pentecostal revival that occurred over a century ago.
Despite not having other reference points or the education, he tapped into the infinite resources that God exposed him to. This divine grace from Father God let to the deliverance of many souls.
Thousands would come to Christ after an encounter with Wigglesworth from one of his tent meetings. It's worth noting that hundreds were healed and delivered from serious illnesses and major diseases. The supernatural signs that occurred were astonishing so much so that many ministries have established their teachings, altar calls, and tent meetings based on how God led Wigglesworth.
Because of Wigglesworth's deep intimacy and love for Father God, He always obeyed God and never questioned God in His faith. As one of the first and true generals, the world witnessed the spectacular results that can come from being a God-filled believer.
Please see the sermon excerpt from Pastor Smith Wigglesworth at the end of this page. It is entitled, What It Means To Be Filled With the Holy Spirit.
Bible Reading-Acts 6 - Pastor Smith Wigglesworth
In the days when the number of disciples began to be multiplied there developed a situation which caused the twelve to make a definite decision not to occupy themselves with serving tables, but to give themselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the Word. How important it is for all God’s ministers to be continually in prayer, and constantly feeding on the Scriptures of Truth. I often offer a reward to anyone who can catch me anywhere without my Bible or my Testament.
None of you can be strong in God unless you are diligently and constantly hearkening to what God has to say to you through His Word. You cannot know the power and the nature of God unless you partake of His inbreathed Word. Read it at morn and at night, and at every opportunity you get. After every meal, instead of indulging in unprofitable conversation round the table, read a chapter from the Word and then have a season of prayer. I endeavour to make a point of doing this no matter where or with whom I am staying.
The Psalmist said that he had hid God’s Word in his heart, that he might not sin against Him; and you will find that the more of God’s Word you hide in your heart, the easier it is to live a holy life. He also testified that God’s Word lead quickened him; and, as you receive God’s Word into your being, your whole physical being will be quickened and you will be made strong. As you receive with meekness the Word, you will find faith upspringing within. And you will have life through the Word.
The twelve told the rest to look out seven men to look after the business end of things. They were to be men of honest report and filled with the Holy Ghost. These were just ordinary men who were chosen, but they were filled with the Holy Spirit, and this infilling always lifts a man to a plane above the ordinary. It does not take a cultured or a learned man to fill a position in God’s church; what God requires is a yielded, consecrated, holy life, and He can make of such a flame of fire. Baptized with the Holy Ghost and fire!
The multitude chose out seven men to serve tables. They were doubtless faithful in their appointed tasks, but we see that God soon had a better choice for two of them. Philip was so full of the Holy Ghost that he could have a revival wherever God put him down. Man chose him to serve tables, but God chose him to win souls. O, if I could only stir you up to see that as you are faithful in performing the humblest office, God can fill you with His Spirit and make you a chosen vessel for Himself, and promote you to a place of mighty ministry in the salvation of souls and in the healing of the sick. There is nothing impossible to a man filled with the Holy Ghost. It is beyond all human comprehension. When you are filled with the power of the Holy Ghost, God will wonderfully work wherever you go.
When you are filled with the Spirit you will know the voice of God. I want to give you one illustration of this. When I was going out to Australia recently, our boat stopped at Aden and at Bombay. In the first place the people came round the ship selling their wares, beautiful carpets and all sorts of oriental things. There was one man selling some ostrich feathers. As I was looking over the side of the ship watching the trading, a gentleman said to me, “Would you go shares with me in buying that bunch of feathers?” What did I want with feathers? I had no use for such things and no room for them either. But the gentleman put the question to me again, “Will you go shares with me in buying that bunch?” The Spirit of God said to me, “Do it.”
The feathers were sold to us for three pounds, and the gentleman said, “I have no money on me, but if you will pay the man for them, I will send the cash down to you by the purser.” I paid for the feathers and gave the gentleman his share. He was travelling first, and I was travelling second class. I said to him, “No, please don’t give that money to the purser, I want you to bring it to me personally to my cabin.” I said to the Lord, “What about these feathers?” He showed me that He had a purpose in my purchasing them.
At about 10 o’clock the gentleman came to my cabin and said, “I’ve brought the money.” I said to him, “It is not your money that I want, it is your soul that I am seeking for God.” Right there he opened up the whole plan of his life and began to seek God; and that morning he wept his way through to God’s salvation.
You have no conception what God can do through you when you are filled with His Spirit. Every day and every hour you can have the divine leading of God. To be filled with the Holy Ghost means much in every way. I have seen some who have been suffering for years, and when they have been filled with the Holy Ghost everything of their sickness has passed away. The Spirit of God has made real to them the life of Jesus and they have been completely liberated of every sickness and infirmity.
Look at Stephen. He was just an ordinary man chosen to serve tables. But the Holy Ghost was in him and he was full of faith and power, and did great wonders and miracles among the people. There was no resisting the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake. How important it is that every man shall be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Tongues and Interpretation: “The divine will is that you should be filled with God; for the power of the Spirit to fill you with the mightiness of God. There is nothing God will withhold from a man filled with the Holy Ghost.”
I want to impress the importance of this upon you. It is not healing that I am presenting to you-it is the living Christ. It is a glorious fact that the Son of God came down to bring liberty to the captives.
How is it that the moment you are filled with the Holy Ghost persecution starts? It was so with the Lord Jesus Himself. We do not read of any persecutions before the Holy Spirit came down like a dove upon Him. Shortly after this we find that, after preaching in His home town, they wanted to throw Him over the brow of a hill. It was the same with the twelve disciples. They had no persecution before the day of Pentecost; but after they were filled with the Spirit, they were soon in prison. The devil and the priests of religion will always get stirred when a man is filled with the Spirit and does things in the power of the Spirit. And persecution is the greatest blessing to a church. When we have persecution we will have purity. If you desire to be filled with the Spirit you can count on one thing, and that is persecution. The Lord came to bring division, and even in your own household you may find three against two.
The Lord Jesus came to bring peace; and soon after you get peace within, you get persecution without. If you remain stationary, the devil and his agents will not disturb you much. But when you press on and go the whole length with God the enemy has you as a target. But God will vindicate you in the midst of the whole thing.
At a meeting I was holding, the Lord was working and many were being healed. A man saw what was taking place and remarked, “I’d like to try this thing.” He came up for prayer and told me that his body was broken in two places. I laid my hands on him in the name of the Lord, and said to him, “Now, you believe God.” The next night he was at meeting and he got up like a lion. He said, “I want to tell you people that this man here is deceiving you. He laid his hands on me last night for rupture in two places, but I’m not a bit better.” I stopped him and said, “You are healed, your trouble is that you won’t believe it.”
He was at meeting the next night and when there was opportunity for testimony this man arose. He said, “I’m a mason by trade. Today I was working with a labourer and he had to put a big stone in place. I helped him and did not feel any pain. I said to myself, `How have I done it?’ I went away to a place where I could strip, and found that I was healed.” I told the people, “Last night this man was against the Word of God, but now he believes it. It is true that these signs shall follow them that believe, they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover. And all through the power that is in the name of Christ.” It is the Spirit who has come to reveal the Word of God, and to make it spirit and life to us.
You people who are seeking the Baptism are entering a place where you will have persecution. Your best friends will leave you-or those you may esteem your best friends. No good friend will ever leave you. But it is worth while. You enter into a realm of illumination, or revelation by the power of the Holy Ghost. He reveals the preciousness and the power of the blood of Christ. I find by the revelation of the Spirit that there is not one thing in me that the blood does not cleanse. I find that God sanctifies me by the blood and reveals that efficacy of the work by the Spirit.
Stephen was just an ordinary man clothed with the divine. He was full of faith and power, and great wonders and miracles were wrought by him. Oh, this life in the Holy Ghost! this life of deep, inward revelation, of transformation from one state to another, of growing in grace and in all knowledge and in the power of the Spirit, the life and the mind of Christ being renewed in you, and of constant revelations of the might of His power. It is the only kind of thing that will enable us to stand.
In this life, the Lord puts you in all sorts of places, and then reveals His power. I had been preaching in New York, and sailed one day for England on the Lusitania. As soon as I got on board I went down to my cabin. Two men were there, and one of them said, “Well, will I do for company?” He took out a bottle and poured out a glass of whiskey and drank it, and then he filled it up for me. “I never touch that stuff,” I said. “How can you live without it?” he asked. “How could I live with it?” I asked. He admitted, “I have been under the influence of this stuff for months, and they say my `inside is all shrivelled up,’ and I know that I am dying. I wish I could be delivered, but I just have to keep on drinking. Oh, if I could only be delivered! My father died in England and has given me his fortune, but what will the good of it be to me except to hasten me to my grave?”
I said to this man, “Say the word, and you will be delivered.” He enquired, “What do you mean?” I said, “Say the word, show that you are willing to be delivered and God will deliver you.” But it was just as if I was talking to this platform for all the comprehension he showed. I said to him, “Stand still,” and I laid my hands on his head in the name of Jesus and cursed that drink demon that was taking his life. He cried out, “I’m free! I’m free! I know I’m free!” He took two bottles of whiskey and threw them overboard, and God saved, sobered and healed him. I was preaching all the way across. He sat beside me at the table. Previous to this he had not been able to eat; but at every meal he went right through the menu. You only have to have a touch from Jesus to have a good time. The power of God is just the same today. To me, He’s lovely. To me, He’s saving health. To me, He’s the lily of the valley. O this blessed Nazarene, this King of kings! Hallelujah! Will you let Him have your will? Will you let Him have you? If you will, all His power is at your disposal.
They were not able to resist the wisdom and spirit by which Stephen spake, and so, full of rage, they brought him to the council. And God filled his face with a ray of heaven’s light. It is worth being filled with the Spirit, no matter what it costs. Read the seventh chapter, the mighty prophetic utterance by this holy man. Without fear he tells them, “Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost.” And when they heard these things they were cut to the heart. There are two ways of being affected at the heart. Here they gnashed their teeth and cast him out of the city and stoned him. On the day of Pentecost, when they were pricked at the heart they cried out, “What shall we do?” They took the opposite way. The devil, if he can have his way, will cause you to commit murder. If Jesus has His way, you will repent.
And Stephen, full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. O, this being full of the Holy Ghost! How much it means. I was riding for sixty miles one summer day and as I looked up in the heavens I had an open vision of Jesus all the way. It takes the Holy Ghost to give this.
Stephen cried out, “Lord, lay not this sin to their charge.” As he was full of the Spirit he was full of love, and he manifested the very same compassion for his enemies that Jesus did at Calvary. This being filled with the Holy Ghost means much in every way. It means constant filling, quickening, and a new life continually. Oh, it’s lovely! We have a wonderful gospel and a great Saviour! If you will but be filled with the Holy Ghost you will have a constant spring within, yea, as your faith centres in the Lord Jesus, from within you shall flow rivers of living water.