Revival Is For The Redeemed

Title: Revival Is For The Redeemed

Bible Book: 2 Chronicles 7 : 14

Author: Donnie L. Martin

Subject: Revival; Awakening; Renewal



2 Chronlicles 7:14

Our text is perhaps one of the most recognized verses of Scripture within the Christian community. Yet, it speaks of a topic that is also among the least understood and most misunderstood truths of God’s Word. “How so?” you may ask.

When the word “revival” is mentioned, any numbers of ideas are conjured up in people’s minds. Some may think of a brush arbor meeting of like those held years ago. Others may call to mind the renewed enthusiasm among the members of the church, dynamic and inspiring Christian music, energetic and soul-searching preaching by a well-known preacher who came from another city and state to conduct the proceedings for a week. Still others may simply view revival as a time when   more than an average number of professions of faith are made in the church services. And while these things are not bad in themselves, even desirable, they are not necessarily revival. These occurrences may in fact be the results of revival. However, we must understand that true revival is not as much about what happens as about Who is the focus.

If the goal of our revival meetings is nothing more than renewed religious enthusiasm, exciting Christian music, or even more souls reached for Christ, revival will not be the result. You see, folks, revival has little to do with reigniting the dulled emotions of Christians, but rather, it is the intense realization of one’s great need to renew his or her relationship with God. Though saints reap the benefits of revival, the personal benefits are not the goal; God Himself is the goal of revival!

The late Dr. James A. Stewart was originally from Scotland. He was mightily used of God in revival meetings in countries around the world. He was a revivalist par excellence, and one that, in younger days, I had the privilege of hearing preach in person. He knew revival firsthand, as is evident from the following excerpt:

Suffice it to say that no revival is of sudden origin. When the revival manifests itself in a mighty way it comes suddenly as in the days of Hezekiah, but even so, its origins begin with the Holy Spirit of God moving effectively in individual lives in private. Let no one pray for revival—let no one pray for a mighty baptism of power who is not prepared for deep heart-searchings and confession of sin in his personal life. Revival, in its beginnings, is a most humiliating experience. When one, like Isaiah, sees himself in the light of God’s holiness he must inevitably cry, “Woe is me!”

Deep spiritual awakenings, whether in local churches or in whole countries, begin with desperate people like Hannah. God only answers prayers of desperate Christians—Christians who are tired and weary of cold, mechanical “services” before God; Christians who are heartbroken over the deadness of the professing churches and over sinners going to an endless hell; Christians who are desperate about their own spiritual condition. While it is true that when the awakening does come there is “joy unspeakable and full of glory,” this is not the case of the preparatory days. Then, there is no song, but rather groans; there is no laughter, but only tears.1

That, dear friends, is what real revival is about. My heart’s cry to the Lord for our day is, “Oh that thou wouldest rend the heavens, that thou wouldest come down…” (Isa.64: 1a). Look with me for a few moments at what God has to say about revival.

Theme: As we examine the topic of revival, notice…

I. The Choice of Revival

2 Chronicles 7:14a, “If my people…”

I do not mean to imply that all God’s people have to do is simply decide they want revival. God is the Author of true revival, and ultimately, it is He Who decides if His people are in a position to receive it. God’s requirements must be met, and He certainly doesn’t extend the offer of revival flippantly.

However, that being said, God will not visit His people with renewed spiritual life and fervor if they don’t want it, and if they don’t want it for the right reasons. So a choice on the part of the individual to seek God in revival is a necessary step. This choice comes from a heartfelt realization and sense of neediness to draw nearer to God.

II. The Candidates for Revival

2 Chronicles 7:14a, “If my people, which are called by my name…”

Only God’s people can be revived, for, “Revival is the people of God living in the power of an ungrieved, unquenched Spirit.”2

Robert Coleman put it this way: “Revival is that sovereign work of God in which He visits His own people, restoring and releasing them into the fullness of His blessing.”3

Vance Havner, a great old saint of God, who is now with the Lord, defined revival simply, when he said, “Revival is the church falling in love with Jesus all over again.”4

Let me give you some idea of what begins to happen to God’s people when revival breaks out.

Revival is the visitation of God, which brings to life Christians who have been sleeping and restores a deep sense of God’s near presence and holiness. Thence springs a vivid sense of sin and a profound exercise of heart in repentance, praise, and love, with an evangelistic outflow.

Each revival movement has its own distinctive features, but the pattern is the same every time.

First God comes. On New Year’s Eve 1739, John Wesley, George Whitefield, and some of their friends held a “love feast” which became a watch night of prayer to see the New Year in. At about 3 a.m., Wesley wrote, “the power of God came mightily upon us, insomuch that many cried for exceeding joy, and many fell to the ground.” Revival always begins with a restoration of the sense of the closeness of the Holy One.

Second, the gospel is loved as never before. The sense of God’s nearness creates an overwhelming awareness of one’s own sins and sinfulness, and so the power of the cleansing blood of Christ is greatly appreciated.

Then repentance deepens. In the Ulster revival in the 1920’s, shipyard workers brought back so many stolen tools that new sheds had to be built to house the recovered property! Repentance results in restitution.

Finally, the Spirit works fast: godliness multiplies, Christians mature, converts appear. Paul was at Thessalonica for less than three weeks, but God worked quickly and Paul left a virile church behind him.5

III. The Cost in Revival

A. The Saints Must Submit

2 Chronicles 7:14b, “…shall humble themselves…”

Folks, if we ever hope to experience revival in the Church of Jesus Christ, its people will have to cease living self-centered, self-pleasing lives and yield themselves wholly over to the will of Christ. This poem says it well:

O Lord, my best desire fulfill, And help me to resign

Life, health, and comfort to Thy will, And make Thy pleasure mine.

Why should I shrink at Thy command, Whose love forbids my fears’

Or tremble at the gracious hand That wipes away my tears’

No, rather let me freely yield What most I prize to Thee;

Who never hast a good withheld, Or wilt withhold, from me.

Thy favour, all my journey through, Thou art engaged to grant;

What else I want, or think I do, ‘Tis better still to want.

Wisdom and mercy guide my way, Shall I resist them both'

A poor blind creature of a day, And crush’d before the moth!

But ah! my inward spirit cries, Still bind me to Thy sway;

Else the next cloud that veils the skies Drives all these thoughts away.6

That we’re talking about here is total dedication to the Lord. This was pictured in the Old Testament tabernacle and temple sacrifices, via the whole burnt offering. Wiersbe says:

When worshipers wanted to express commitment to God, they brought the burnt offering, and possibly along with it the grain or meal (“meat,” KJV) offering and the drink offering (see Num. 15:1- 10). These offerings speak of total dedication to the Lord.7

This total dedication to the Lord is precisely what Paul spoke about in the Book of Romans.

Romans 12:1, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

Jesus was the epitome of yieldedness to God. We should emulate Christ’s attitude when He said, “…Not my will, but thine, be done” (Luke 22: 42).

Charles Spurgeon once said: “If I had my choice of all the blessing I can conceive of, I would choose perfect conformity to the Lord Jesus, or, in one word, holiness.”8 Folks, if we want revival, we’re going to have to conform to the image of Christ.

B. The Saints Must Seek

2 Chronicles 7:14b, “…pray, and seek my face…”

What we need today is for Christians to stop trying to put on airs with God, and just get plain and honest with Him about their needs.

Howard Hendricks told of a new Christian who was attending his first prayer meeting and was afraid to pray aloud because he couldn’t do it like the others.

After some encouragement, he stood and said, “Lord, this is Jim. I’m the one that met You last Thursday night. Forgive me, Lord, because I can’t say it the way the rest of these people do, but I want to tell You the best I know how: “I love You. Amen.”

Hendricks said that man’s simple prayer ignited the prayer meeting. Many people think they don’t know how to pray because they put too much emphasis on how their words will sound to God. We can “come boldly” to Him and express our questions, our praise, our fears, and our requests.

Eloquence is not necessary, but a fervent spirit is!9

Folks, revival never comes apart from prayer. 2 Chronicles 7:14 makes that clear. Even Satan knows that. That’s why he and the demons of Hell work so hard to keep Christians from praying.

Why The Devil Hates Prayer

An evangelist said sometime ago that the devil must surely urge his demon forces to keep us from praying. He might well say to them, “Boys, keep them from praying. If you keep them from praying, we win every time. If they pray, the Lord wins every time. Whatever you do, keep them from praying.”10

C. The Saints Must Separate From Sin

2 Chronicles 7:14b, “…and turn from their wicked ways…”

You may wonder why I preach so much against sin in the lives of Christians. It’s simple: God can’t bless or work in our mist like He wants to when there is sin in the camp. Mousey preaching is part of the problem of our day. One of my former church members in Raytown, Missouri refers to it as, “Cotton Candy Theology.”11 Larry King asked Joel Osteen about preaching on Hell. Here’s how he answered: I don’t have it in my heart to condemn people. I’m there to encourage them. I see myself more as a coach, as a motivator to help them experience the life God has for us.12

The Church of Jesus Christ must repent of her worldliness if she ever hopes to see revival.

Note that G. Campbell Morgan was right when he said that the church did the most for the world when the church was the least like the world.13

One of the greatest tragedies of the Church in our day is the empty altar. Going to the church altar to pray and repent is almost unheard of in the modern-day church service. Vance Havner once noted: Repentance is almost a lost note in our preaching and experience, and the lack of it is filling our churches with baptized sinners who have never felt the guilt of sin or the need of a Savior...We are trying to get young people to say, “Here am I” before they have ever said, “Woe is me!”14

IV. The Culmination of Revival

A. Our Supplications Will Be Heard

2 Chronicles 7:14c, “…then will I hear from heaven…”

B. Our Sins Will Be Forgiven

2 Chronicles 7:14c, “…and I will forgive their sin…”

C. Our Situation Will Be Helped

2 Chronicles 7:14c, “…and will heal their land.”


1 James A. Stewart, Invasion of Wales By The Spirit Through Evan Roberts, Copyright © 2004, 1963 by Revival Literature, Asheville, NC 28816, All rights reserved; pgs. 15-16.

2 James A. Stewart. 3.Robert Coleman

3 Robert Coleman

4 Vance Havner

5 James Packer, Your Father Loves You, Harold Shaw Publishers, 1986.

6 Olney Hymns, William Cowper, from Cowper’s Poems, Sheldon & Company, New York.

7 W. Wiersbe, Be Holy, QuickVerse 2006, Version 10.1.

8 Charles Spurgeon.

9 Source unknown. Acquired from

10 Ibid.

11 Lanetta Chapin

12 Ibid

13 Warren W. Wiersbe, Be Holy, QuickVerse 2006, Version 10.1.

14 Vance Havner.

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