Monday, September 24, 2012

Real Revival - Into the Light

Spirit & Truth # 290
“Real Revival – Into the Light”
By Greg Smith

            Last week we talked about real revival, and the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead.  Sometimes God’s people have a faith that has been dead so long that it stinks, and we need Jesus to give us new life.  If you’re in need of revival, then take a look at how Jesus brings this into Lazarus’ world, and how He can bring it into yours.

            Before the Lord does anything else, He prays.  “Father, I thank You that You heard Me.  I know that You always hear Me (vv. 41-42 HCSB)."  Central to our understanding of revival is the knowledge that God is our ever-present friend who always hears us.  There is no place where we are absent from God's presence (Psalm 139:1).  God always hears and sees us (Genesis 16:11, 13).  When you seek revival, you seek a real refreshing.  As Hagar needed a supernatural stream in the desert (Genesis 21:8-21), so you need God to quench your spiritual thirst.  And God always hears your cry in the desert.

            When the stone was rolled away, Jesus called with a loud voice, "Lazarus, come out (John 11:40 HCSB)!"  Why would he have to give such a command?  Was it Jesus' voice that awakened Lazarus from the dead?  Or, was it Jesus' inner prayer that awakened him, and Jesus’ words were to the living man inside the tomb, commanding him to emerge?  When God brings renewal to our lives, often we say, "Thank you very much," but in reality we prefer to remain jnside our tombs of depression or doubt or fear.  Jesus didn't resuscitate Lazarus so that he could live in the tomb.  He called Lazarus into the light of life.  He calls you too, saying, "I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will never walk in the darkness but will have the light of life (John 8:12 HCSB).”

            Just as Jesus commanded Lazarus into the light, He also told Lazarus' friends, "Loose him, and let him go (v. 44 HCSB)."  Jesus was the main actor in Lazarus' salvation, but Lazarus also played a part, following the Master's call into the light.  But once he had emerged, Jesus called the faithful to come and unbind their brother.  When revival comes, the entire faith community must respond in order to set free those who were once in darkness.  The resurrected life of faith is not an individual thing--it happens in partnership with other believers who obey Jesus' command to set one another free by His love.

            Jesus calls His people to a living faith.  Too often we let our faith get so stale that it dies altogether—but Jesus wants to raise us up.  I pray the Lord’s revival for your life, and a fresh infilling of God’s sweet breath.  Hear His voice, obey His call, and walk into His light today.

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