Course: The Importance of Effective Prayer.
Lesson Title: Prayer for Revival
Text: "Wilt Thou not revive us again, that Thy people may rejoice in Thee?" (Ps. 85:6)
Introduction: The darker the hour the greater the urgency for revival.
· It is essential that we pray for revival. The need should lead us to prayer.
· The prayer of the Psalmist "It is time for Jehovah to work, for they have made void Thy law." (Ps. 119:126)
Revival is characterized by the quickening power of the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 2:1
Revivals are sometimes
· general and can be spread worldwide. For instance the Welsh revival. or
· local and confined to a particular church or area.
We should pray for a general revival as well as a local one.
Introductory Story: Charles Finney visited a factory and 3000 people came to Christ. click here
1. The RESULTS OF A REVIVAL are apparent in ministers, in the church and in the unsaved.
The results of a revival in a minister are:
(1) The minister has a new love for souls.
(2) When true revivals come ministers get a new love for God's Word and a new faith in God's Word.
(3) Revivals bring to ministers new liberty and power in preaching
The results of a revival on Christians generally are as marked as its results upon the ministry.
(1) In times of revival Christians come out from the world and live separated lives.
(2) In times of revival Christians get a new spirit of prayer.
(3) In times of revival Christians go to work for lost souls.
(4) In times of revival Christians have new joy in Christ.
(5) In times of revival Christians get a new love for the Word of God.
But revivals also have a decided influence on the unsaved world.
(1) First of all, they bring deep conviction of sin. (John. 16:7,8).
(2) Revivals bring also conversion and regeneration. The first result of Pentecost was new life and power to the one hundred and twenty disciples in the upper room; the second result was three thousand conversions in a single day. It is always so.
2. WHY A GENERAL REVIVAL IS NEEDED
Look first at the ministry.
· Many of us who are professedly orthodox ministers are practically infidels.
· Even when our ministers are orthodox--as thank God so very many are!--they are oftentimes not men of prayer. How many modern ministers know what it is to wrestle in prayer, to spend a good share of a night in prayer? I do not know how many, but I do know that many do not.
· Many of us who are ministers have no love for souls. How many preach because they MUST preach, because they feel that men every where are perishing, and by preaching they hope to save some? And how many follow up their preaching as Paul did, by beseeching men everywhere to be reconciled to God?
Look now at the church:
Look at the doctrinal state of the church.
Look at the spiritual state of the church.
· Worldliness is rampant among church members.
· Prayerlessness abounds among church members on every hand.
· Neglect of the Word of God goes hand in hand with neglect of prayer to God. How many Christians average an hour a day spent in Bible study?
· A lack of generosity. The churches are rapidly increasing in wealth, but the treasuries of the missionary societies are empty.
· Then there is the increasing disregard for the need to meet together on Sunday. It is fast becoming a day of worldly pleasure, instead of a day of holy service.
· Christians mingle with the world in all forms of questionable amusements.
· Then how small a proportion of our membership has really entered into fellowship with Jesus Christ in His burden for souls!
Now look at the state of the world.
Note how few conversions there are.
There is lack of conviction of sin.
Unbelief is rampant.
Hand in hand with this widespread infidelity goes gross immorality, as has always been the case.
· Look at the legalized adultery that we call divorce.
· Immorality found in the theater.
· Much of our literature is rotten.
· Art is oftentimes a mere covering for shameless indecency.
· Greed for money has become a mania with rich and poor.
· The moral condition of the world in our day is disgusting, sickening, appalling.
3. THE PLACE OF PRAYER IN REVIVALS.
· The first great revival of Christian history had its origin on the human side in a ten-days' prayer-meeting. (Acts 1:14.)
· The result of that prayer-meeting we read of in the 2nd chapter of the Acts of the Apostles, (2:4)
· Further on in the chapter we read that three thousand were added (2:41)
· This revival proved genuine and permanent. (2:42, 47)
The great need of to-day is a general revival. What then shall we do? Take up the Psalmist's prayer, "Revive us again, that Thy people may rejoice in Thee."
Take up Ezekiel's prayer, "Come from the four winds, O breath (breath of God), and breathe upon these slain that they may live."
1) Revival is needed to change the church
2) Revival is needed to bring in the unsaved.
3) Revival is needed because the church today should resemble the early church in the Acts of the Apostles.
We should have expectancy that the Holy Spirit will bring Revival when we pray.
R A Torrey
How to Pray