Are You Experiencing Revival In Your Spiritual Walk?
Here are some signs indicating that a True Revival is going on in your life. They were taken from a sermon found online called - "Signs Of True Revival" - and preached by Ernest Forrestier. Can you honestly say - based on this list - that you are indeed experiencing revival?
1. You have a hunger for the Word of God and not for the world.
2. You are open to receive the Word of God and closed to the world.
3. You are not focused on how long the service is but are eager to hear and learn all that the Holy Ghost has for you.
4. You take each sermon personally and weep - when under conviction - because of what the Lord is showing you about "you."
5. You take what you learned in each Bible message and then share it with others.
6. There is never a day that goes by that you do not read your Bible and pray.
7. Each week you have a set time to fast and pray.
8. You are not living on the World's principles but on the Word principles.
9. You have a repenting heart whereby you easily confess any and all sin in your walk.
10. You freely worship God on your own without anyone telling you to do so.
11. You are obedient to leadership.
12. You are always on time for the church service - excited and eager to get there early so that you don't miss anything.
The word - "Revival" - is tossed around alot in the Christian circles and is used on many different occasions. Oftentimes, churches will say - "We are in revival" - simply because they have called in a "fiery" evangelist who is preaching every night for three consecutive nights. Then again, some Pastors will say that their church is experiencing "revival" when souls are getting saved every week at the altars. Or, you will even have Pastors brag about their church experiencing "revival" because it is growing in attendance.
But, is this true revival according to the Word of God? How can you know when it has come and is going on in your life, ministry, or church?
Nehemiah 8 documents for us an Old Testament example of a True Revival. It would behoove us to examine some verses in this chapter to see what it is - based on the Word of God.
Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, & 8 relates - "And all the people gathered themselves together as one man into the street that was before the water gate; and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which the LORD had commanded to Israel. And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation both of men and women, and all that could hear with understanding, upon the first day of the seventh month. And he read therein before the street that was before the water gate from the morning until midday, before the men and the women, and those that could understand; and the ears of all the people were attentive unto the book of the law...And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people; and when he opened it, all the people stood up: And Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God, And all the people answered, Amen, Amen, with lifting up their hands: and they bowed their heads, and worshipped the LORD with their faces to the ground...So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading."
First of all, let's note that there was remarkable unity among the people. They had one agenda. They were not separated by differing ideas or opinions. Their focus was the same. They were united "as one man." Even though they could have been doing a thousand other things at this time, the Scripture tells us that they "gathered themselves together as one man."
Please note that it was not just a few who came together here. It wasn't just the "on-fire" ones...the Prayer Warriors...the elderly...the Preachers...the poor...the afflicted or suffering ones who recognized their need for God...or those who had nothing better to do - who were gathered together "as one man." It was "all the people" from all walks of life - facing varying circumstances and coming from different social backgrounds.
"And all the people gathered themselves together as one man"
Notice also that there weren't any excuses offered here by some as to why they needed to be exempt from such an event. There were no exceptions called for because one had a business to tend to...a celebration to attend...or a family incident that needed their immediate attention.
"...all the people gathered themselves together as one man"
For what purpose did they "gather themselves together"? The answer is implied in the words - "...and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which the LORD had commanded to Israel." What was their request? "Bring the book." They desired that Ezra the scribe would "bring the book of the law of Moses" and read it to them.
Who were the ones requesting this action? Was it only the "men"? No, for the "women" were mentioned as well. Was it only for those who were middle-aged or elderly? No, the younger generation was involved as well. How do we know this? The Scripture mentions - "...And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation both of men and women, and all that could hear with understanding..." Both young and old were included in this great number of people who were gathered together "as one man." Both young and old requested Ezra to "bring the book."
And it was both young and old who "stood up" at the reading of the Scripture (possibly the book of Deuteronomy) "from the morning until midday." For six long hours, this group "stood" and listened "attentively" to the reading of God's Word.- "...and the ears of all the people were attentive unto the book of the law..." There was no mention of any complaining or grumbling at how long the service was lasting. No one made excuses as to why they had to leave this holy convocation. Neither is there any mention of those who got bored or fell asleep.
Instead, the people - both young and old - reacted with great zeal, passion, and enthusiasm. They really got into the service with shoutings of "Amen, Amen" - along with lifting up their hands and bowing their heads with their faces to the ground. This was no "dead" religious service. These people were "on-fire" for God.
Notice that the Preacher did not have to coax an "Amen" out of them. He didn't have to ask them if they were listening or if they were actually in attendance. He didn't wonder if they all fell asleep on him. He knew they were there because they were "attentive unto the book of the law." In other words, they made their presence known. No one worried about what their neighbor would think if they shouted out an "Amen" or if they lifted their hands or even bowed their heads with their faces to the ground. They just did it - in response to the reading and preaching of the Word.
Ezra and the Levites who were with him read the Scriptures plainly and intelligently. They didn't mumble through them. There was great enthusiasm involved. They weren't afraid to get loud at times and use expression in their voices. They acted like those who understood what they were saying and were themselves affected with the sense of it. They read it with the intent that the others would be greatly affected as well. In other words, they read the Scriptures with great passion and fire and expected the people to feel and sense the "fire" of God as well. The Levites or teachers then explained the obscure words or passages - making sure that the people clearly understood their duty to God and men.
After studying this passage of Scripture, and examining a perfect example of an Old Testament true revival, which characteristic seems to stand out?
We would all have to agree that a true Biblical revival centers around the Word of God and demonstrates a hunger for it among the people. When individuals, ministries, or churches are in "revival," they are hungry for more and more of God's Truth. They are certainly not among those who complain when the Preacher preaches past noon on Sunday or goes longer than thirty minutes or an hour in his preaching. On the contrary, they are a people who can't seem to get enough of the Scriptures. They personally are always reading them...studying them... meditating on them...or memorizing them. They shout and "get happy" when the Preacher preaches the solid truth. They allow it to penetrate their hearts and bring conviction or godly sorrow for any hidden sin. They aren't just hearers of it but doers as well. What they receive, they feel an obligation to share with others so that they, too, would be edified and found walking in truth.
The question you need to ask yourself is this - are you experiencing revival in your spiritual walk?
No one can answer that question but you!
Your answer will depend totally on the amount of time that you give to the Word of God in your life.
In closing, consider this - If such a meeting would be called nowadays as it was in the days of Nehemiah, just how many people would show up? How many do you suppose would stand for six hours to hear the Word of God read and taught? Would the young and the old be together on this? Would you be in that number?
May God Bless His Word.