A famous passage of Scripture is Psalm 85:6, “Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy may rejoice in thee.” Historically speaking, the psalmist is speaking of the restoration of Israel from some calamity. Whether this is from captivity in exile or other troubled times in the nation’s history, one thing is for sure; the people need revival (חיה,ḥā·yā(h), Hebrew), restoration, recovery, or a return to former glory. Believers need revival today. We are about to enter into a time of revival at our local church.
In a noteworthy writing, Leonard Ravenhill shared six reasons why revival tarries (meaning, why we still have the need for revival). I believe these are still applicable even after a few decades.
- Evangelism is so highly commercialized
- Cheapening of the Gospel
- Lack of urgency in prayer, and
- We still the glory that belongs to God. – Ravenhill, 1959, pp. 55-61
One critical observation about a revival that continues to stand out to me is, “When revival comes, Christians will act like Christians.” In our current society, believers need to measure up to the Bible, not the standards of society. This measuring could take place in many different areas of life, but the Scripture is clear on one thing, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another” (John 13:34-35). Yes, we need to be concrete in our stance against sin, but Christ-like love for believers and all humanity is the Scriptural position of how people should view Christians.
If your “revival” does not incur a friendly, humble, and compassionate group of believers, you may need to seek a greater sense of revival.
Ravenhill, Leonard (1959) Why Revival Tarries. Bethany House Publishers. Minneapolis, MN.