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What should the “Revivalist,” be teaching?

Posted by appolus on March 4, 2010

Revival can come only to those who know truth. When the inner meaning of familiar doctrines suddenly flashes in upon the heart of a Christian the revival for him has already begun. It may go on to be much more than this but it can never be less

 

WHAT SHOULD THE REVIVALIST BE TEACHING?

 

There is a lot of teaching on revival. Many gatherings to talk about revival, so why no revival? Could it be we are searching in the wrong place ? Tozer writes………

“The New Testament draws a sharp line between the natural mind and the mind that has been touched by divine fire. When Peter made his good confession, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God,” our Lord replied, “Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.” And Paul expresses much the same thing when he says, “No man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.”

The sum of what I am saying is that there is an illumination, divinely bestowed, without which theological truth is information and nothing more. While this illumination is never given apart from theology, it is entirely possible to have theology without the illumination. This results in what has been called “dead orthodoxy,” and while there may be some who deny that it is possible to be both orthodox and dead at the same time I am afraid experience proves that it is.

Revivals, as they have appeared at various times among the churches of the past, have been essentially a quickening of the spiritual life of persons already orthodox. The revivalist, as long as he exercised his ministry as a revivalist, did not try to teach doctrine. His one object was to bring about a quickening of the churches which while orthodox in creed were devoid of spiritual life. When he went beyond this he was something else than a revivalist. Revival can come only to those who know truth. When the inner meaning of familiar doctrines suddenly flashes in upon the heart of a Christian the revival for him has already begun. It may go on to be much more than this but it can never be less.
—Best of A. W. Tozer, The

4 Responses to “What should the “Revivalist,” be teaching?”

  1. cindyinsd said

    Great point, Frank

    I’ve always thought that the word “revival” as typically used was inappropriate. When we say “revival,” usually we mean what I would refer to as “vival” if that were a word. 😉 We want to see sinners come to our Lord. That will never happen until we come to Him first.

    Love, Cindy

    • appolus said

      Hey Cindy, I agree with you. I believe that the Lord responds to hunger and to thirst. “As the deer panteth for the waterbrooks, so my soul longeth after thee.” He bids us “come.’ He says “come unto me.” He says “I stand at the door and knock.” He invites us to move towards Him. Always it requires “movement,” on our part. Now what is the definition of “movement,’ in this context? I watched a documentry on a certain African region that has drought for nine months of the year. The cycle plays out year after year. The river dries up, only water holes remain and they turn into mudholes. All life dies at the mudhole, and a very few get up and move and find out where water is, the rest die slowly. The few that get up, have an arduous journey.

      When the river of life dries up, when there is a drought in the land, will you stay at the mudhole until that too dries up and all die? Deer get into this mudhole with crocodiles, strange bedfellows in this drama. Some, a few get up and look for life.

      Is it possible that we see all around us the carcass of death in our churches, in various states of dying from lack of water? Will the eyes be open in order that we can see our state? And then will we cry out with everything that is within us to God to send the rain or we will surely die. Does our hearts truly “panteth for the waterbooks?” Does our souls truly “longeth after thee.” When we get to that level of desperation, will we quit all of our programs and put everything behind us untill the Lord sends the rain? Perhaps then, the Lord will see from heaven, hear our cries and heal our Church of what ails it, a lack of His manifest presence………..Frank

      • cindyinsd said

        Frank, this is amazing. It shouldn’t floor me that God speaks to His kids about the same things, since He often does, but I just posted a blog very similar to your note above. He is so cool!

      • appolus said

        HI Cindy, its always neat to see and to realize that the Holy Spirit is dwelling within us, leading us and guiding us and giving us commonality of thought and desire. He has a plan and there is a thread tht runs through His children. I love it when we have prayer meetings where people from all kinds of backgrounds stand up and give a Scripture or say a prayer or sing a hymn and you can clearly see the Holy Spirit orchestrating it. Or, if I have been feeling down, and have had a hymn in my heart and I go to church on a Sunday and that very Hymn is played and the Lord smiles and my heart leaps within me. All children love affirmation from their parents, and when we recieve affirmation from our heavenly Father it is such a beautiful thing………..Frank

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