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Thursday, June 30, 2005

DAILY ENCOURAGEMENT - THURSDAY - A PENTECOSTAL REVIVAL! #1


“Revivals begin with God's own people; the Holy Spirit touches their heart anew, and gives them new fervor and compassion, and zeal, new light and life, and when He has thus come to you, He next goes forth to the valley of dry bones…Oh, what responsibility this lays on the Church of God! If you grieve Him away from yourselves, or hinder His visit, then the poor perishing world suffers sorely!”Andrew A. Bonar.
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When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. -Act 2:1-4. ESV

There is a desperate need for the Church of Jesus Christ all over the world to be revived! When we begin to encounter the kinds of crime and depravity that go on in society today, and the biggest percentage of His Church have a couldn’t care less attitude, then we need a revival like the one that took place on the day of the Feast of Pentecost, the day that His Churched was birthed publicly!

A U.S. Lutheran bishop tells of visiting a parish church in California and finding a stirring red and orange banner on the wall. "Come Holy Spirit. Hallelujah!" it declared in words printed under a picture of a fire burning. The bishop was also interested in the sign directly underneath the banner which said: "Fire extinguisher." So much for that parish's commitment to spiritual renewal. - One World.

What is a true "Pentecostal" revival? The picture of Acts is often a far cry from what we see in many churches today. First let's look at what it is not… a Pentecostal revival is not a revival of programs, a revival of human personalities or a revival of pomp and circumstance. A Pentecostal revival is…

A REVIVAL OF PASSION
When they came down out of the upper room
they didn't come down whispering, they didn't hide in the shadows, they rushed out into the market place with a revived passion. True passion always comes out in the speech and actions of the passionate. If people do not see and hear Jesus in us, then our passion is lacking.

On the day of Pentecost, the passion would not be contained or concealed in an upper room, it had to make its way, like a river, into the city, and eventually, all the world.

A few years ago, when Latin America was experiencing phenomenal growth in the Pentecostal churches Roland E. Vaughan, General Director of Church of God World Missions, said the reason was not because of education, or facilities, or finances, or programs; "the reason they are growing," he said, "is because the people have a passion for God."

James, in his Epistle, said... Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world. true and undefiled religion is to minister to the needs of widows and orphans. - Jam 1:27.

True religion has enough compassion to do something about the plight of the outcast of society. True religion has enough passion to care and to create ministries which will make a change in people's lives. There is no Christianity without compassion, and there is no "compassion" without passion."

Jesus Christ was often moved with compassion to minister to the masses. Compassion should move us, it should motivate and compel us to do something. Far from the placid figure portrayed in modern media, Jesus was a passionate man. He was also moved with passion to rebuke the religionists, and to clear the temple of money changers.

O for a passionate passion for souls,
O for a pity that yearns!
O for the love that loves unto death,
O for a fire that burns!
O for the pure prayer-power that prevails,
That pours itself out for the lost!
Victorious prayer in the Conqueror's Name,
O for a PENTECOST!
-Amy Wilson Carmichael.

Paul told Timothy… For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, - 2Tim 1:6. A passionless church is a church that has left its first love, it is a church that is neither flowing with cool refreshing streams nor the hot therapeutic springs, but is lukewarm, half-hearted, empty, apathetic and complacent. Don't let the passion die; don't lose your first love, fan the flame and let the fire burn!

I have but one passion; it is He, He only. - Ludwig von Zinzendorf.

Loving Father, by the power of the Holy Spirit, blow across the glowing embers of the Church of Jesus Christ again, and revive within us a passion for the lost, a passion for prayer, a passion to praise, a passion for God in all of His splendour! In Jesus wonderful name I pray!

GBYAY

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