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The Revival.

The Revival.

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Published by glennpease



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Published by: glennpease on May 21, 2013
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THE REVIVAL.BY REV. J. H. POTTS, A.M.,REVIVAL signifies a return to life, or a quick-; ening of life. It is a rising from a low stateinto a higher. In religion it is the increase andenergizing of spiritual life, an extraordinary out-pouring of God's power in the soul, and upon theChurch and the world.Religious revivals are the life of the world.As nature would die with continued winter, sothe world would utterly perish in wickedness if God did not display his saving power. Who cantell what history would have already recordedbut for the glorious reformation under Luther,and the not less spiritual awakenings under Wes-ley, Whitefield, and Edwards ?Revivals often come unexpectedly to the multi-tude. The day of Pentecost was a surprise tothe Jews. The Church was very weak, and heroutlook apparently was unpromising enough.Christ had been crucified, and had disappearedfrom earth. Skepticism seemed to triumph.The disciples were nearly disconsolate, but con-Eesponsibility of the Church. 69tinued their praj^crs. At length the mysterioussound was heard, the cloven tongues appeared,the mighty power fell, and, endowed therewith,the apostles began publicly to preach and exhort,three thousand souls being saved the first day.But back of all this man's agency appears.Long days of waiting, watching, and applica-tion preceded the public spectacle. The worldknew it not, but God and his faithful disciplesknew.For the salvation of souls great responsibilityalways devolves upon humanity. Some one hassaid that there never was a soul saved apart from
human agency. Certain it is that God uses manto save man, and has sent his Spirit into theworld for the very purpose of preparing it thor-oughly for success in Christian work. " He [theSpirit] shall reprove the world of sin, of right-eousness, and of judgment to come." When theunconverted are convicted of sin by the HolyGhost it is the express mission of Christians topoint them to Christ, to tenderly counsel themand lead them in the way of life. or are Chris-tians always to wait for visible tokens of contri-tion. Serious hearts sometimes beat behind laugh-ing faces. Some temperaments use this device toconceal godly sorrow. They sing when they feel70 The Kevival.like sighing, and smile when they can hardly re-frain from tears.Moreover, Christians cannot know just whentheir efforts for good will be most effectual.IIow often a single word spoken by a soul incommunion with Christ is like the spark thatsprings a mine, opening up and clearing the wayfor the mighty revival which follows ! o onecan account for it. As a cause, it apj)ears inade-quate, but in the hands of God it is an earth-quake shock, followed by a tremendous moralupheaval. We believe it might truthfully besaid that in every case of genuine revival one ormore souls have been dwelling in the inner sanc-tuary — have been waiting on the Lord for therenewal of strength — and thus invigorated, theirsimple words or deeds have inaugurated the visi-ble manifestations of God's presence and power.It is somewhere written that a poor blacksmithin western ew York became greatly concernedfor the state of the Church. Unable either tow^ork or rest, he closed his shop and betook him-self to prayer. There were no doubts or misgiv-ings in his heart as he wrestled mightily for thespirit and power of revival in the Churches. Atlength a meeting was opened. God's Spirit cameupon the people. The fire of love began to burn.
Age7icies in Revivals. 71The faith of many was strengthened and theirspiritual life quickened. The influence extendedto the unconverted, and, ere the meeting closed,over two hundred souls were saved. What atriumph for the humble blacksmith; and what abeautiful illustration of the truth that God is norespecter of persons: but in every nation and inevery place he that feareth him, and workethrighteousness, is accepted with him!There are three agencies to be depended uponfor the promotion of revivals — the word of God,the work of the Spirit, and the labors of Chris-tians. The first two are the same to-day as whenWhitefield and Edwards became instrumental inturning thousands to God. The success of Moodyand otiier great evangelists proves that the super-human agencies are as effectual as ever. How isit with the remaining instrumentality ? We wellknow that when these three agencies operate inconcert revivals follow. Sinners cannot resist thecombined influence of proclaimed Bible truth,moving Spirit-power, and active Christian faithand work. They may resist any two of them,but not all. ow, the word and Spirit are al-ways testifying to the truth, but Christians, theonly remaining agency, so speak and act, or failto speak and act, as to nullify their influences.72 The Revival.*' Ye are our epistles," said the apostle, " knov/nand read of all men." What do sinners read of us ? Is it the spirit and temper, the meeknessand gentleness, the humility and lowliness, theself-denial and charity, the zeal and activity of Jesus Christ ? Do we set no examples of unbe-lief, selfishness, worldliness, and folly? Havenot our lives, if not our lips, been testifyingagainst the blessed agencies of God's word and

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