As I look at our nation today, I am increasingly convinced that our only lasting hope is for spiritual revival. We look to our leaders to solve our problems, but they are impotent in the face of such global challenges. We can take comfort in the fact that God never told us to rejoice in this world. Rather, we must rejoice in the Lord!
How does such a revival occur? Let’s answer that question by looking at a future revival that is foretold in Scripture.
“And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace…” (Zechariah 12:10, NKJV)
This is the third post in the series. Last time we looked at the question of whether revival is caused by God or by people. We saw that God takes the initiative in healing backsliding, in taking away stony hearts, and in pouring out His Spirit on all flesh.
In the above passage from Zechariah, God speaks of pouring out the Spirit of grace. Revival begins here. Why is that?
Perhaps we should first start by describing what grace is. Grace is God’s unmerited favor. Justice is getting what we deserve; mercy is not getting what we deserve; grace is getting blessings that we don’t deserve. Grace is an attribute of God.
And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty…” (Exodus 34:6–7, NKJV)
When people ignore God’s commandments and go their own way, they cannot appeal to God on the basis of what they deserve. That would be like a driver running a red light, killing a pedestrian, and then asking the judge to give him what he deserves by letting him go! Even in a culture where we feel entitled, we have no reason to expect God’s blessings except on the basis of His grace.
We are just as dependent on His grace when it comes to revival. We cannot expect people to seek God on their own.
As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God.” (Romans 3:10–11, NIV)
It is only when God pours out the Spirit of grace upon us that our hearts can respond by seeking Him. It isn’t about what we deserve. God overwhelms us with His goodness to the point that we see that He is so much better than all the other things we think that we want. This is the origin of revival.
If we would hasten revival in our day, then let us begin with earnest prayer that God would pour out the Spirit of grace upon our nation, and let it begin with His grace being poured out upon us. We do not ask on the basis of our merit but because of His character. Such a work of God’s Spirit can only result in fullness of joy and hope that cannot disappoint!
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