WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT?

Whatever happened to the Baptism in the Holy Spirit?  You don’t hear about it anymore.  Churches don’t pray with people to receive it anymore.  There’s a big reason why.
Preacher, if you stopped presenting the Baptism of the Holy Spirit to your people—Satan made you do it.  If there is no room in your service for people to receive this urgent gift—the enemy seized control of your agenda.  If your people don’t even know what it is—you will answer to God.
No matter how noble, persuasive, or convincing the argument, the decision to exclude the Baptism of the Holy Spirit from the life of the church, is a decision conceived in hell.

Omitting this Baptism was a masterstroke of Lucifer.

He knew this was the most destructive deception possible.  It created lukewarm Christians.  It single handedly wiped out a huge amount of our soul winning.  And, it opened the door to untold heresy.

Today we are swimming in more false teaching, false prophecy and false Christianity than ever before.  All across the internet ministries dabble in new age hybrids of Christian faith, exotic extremes, drunkenness and even perversion.   Turns out, the church is the other swamp that needs draining.

Noted Christian Apologist Ravi Zacharias said, “I had dinner with the most popular preacher on television.  He told me that he did not see much difference between Islam and Christianity.”

How can we hang the blame for such foolishness on neglecting the Baptism of the Holy Spirit?   Let’s examine the evidence.
Jesus said, “John 16:13  “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.”
Jesus calls Him the Spirit of truth.  He imparts hunger for truth.  It is futile to layer truth on the unwilling soul.  False teaching abounds from the lack of hunger the Holy Spirit awakens.  Let’s go back to the root:

Don’t make a move without it!

Acts 1: 4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me; 5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
The church has no witness without it.  Acts 1:8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

The Apostles considered it an extreme urgency for all who believed to be filled with the Holy Spirit. 

Acts 8: 14 “Now when the apostles who were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them, 15 who, when they had come down, prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit.”
-Acts 19: 1 “And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples 2 he said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” So they said to him, “We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit.” 3 And he said to them, “Into what then were you baptized?” So they said, “Into John’s baptism.”  4 Then Paul said, “John indeed baptized with a baptism of repentance, saying to the people that they should believe on Him who would come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus.”
5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.”

We have two extremes in the church:  Those who believe in nothing and those who believe in everything.

  Or to put it another way: We have those know nothing of what the Bible says and those who believe anything, anyone says about the Bible. Both are products of a lack of discernment and power.  It is only after you experience the real presence and power of God that you know what is fake.

Look at the discipleship result of the Baptism of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost:

Acts 2: 41 “Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. 42 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. 43 Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.”

One big reason that the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is not preached today is because it is the natural enemy of church marketing.

When God falls, church culture instantly changes.  Human promotion becomes obsolete.   An audience morphs into an army.  An insatiable hunger for the Word of God replaces sales pitches.
The preacher who withholds the Baptism of the Holy Spirit is guilty of treason—of withholding a priceless gift bought and paid for by the blood of Jesus—of holding back an edge of power that would keep the believer strong, alert, and able to win others.  It endows them with a prayer language that pierces all adversity.  How dare we hold this back!
The Pentecostal revival is the greatest Christian revival in history.  Beginning in the humble Azusa Street Mission, it has blazed for on for over 100 years, with over 650 million converts.  Only one thing explains it:  The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.

WHY WE HAVE HOPE FOR AMERICA

Let us tell you why we have hope for America.  As ministers of the Gospel we must take stands that are not popular.  Often, we must warn, correct, and give out bad news.  There is no way around the fact that many things threaten our faith and our freedom.  But there is also hope—hope for America.

We see the mighty hand of God working in wondrous ways—even in this dark time.  When we pray, we feel the fierce love of God for America.  We can hear Him saying, “hold on, I have not yet begun to fight for America.”  We see signs that encourage our faith.  We refuse to let anything steal our joy as we travel this great nation for Christ.  Let us give you the reasons for our hope.

Something supernatural is in our soil.  Michael Medved has identified 16 times America should have been destroyed but was spared at the last moment.  However, it is the way America was saved that is mind-boggling.  Relief literally came out of nowhere.Our hope is that God finishes what He starts.  He established this nation with an impossible victory over Britain.  He has repeated His acts of sovereign mercy again, and again.  Even when things looked much worse than today—and we didn’t deserve it—God turned circumstances in our favor and turned our hearts back to Him.  That is our hope.

Millions are praying for revival.  If Abraham’s math is correct, God would have saved Sodom and Gomorrah if just 12 righteous were found.  Despite the widespread number of lukewarm believers and watered-down preaching—there is a vibrant core of Christians who are claiming our nation through fervent intercession.  In fact, Daniel stood alone in prayer and fasting and forced the heart of King Cyrus to release Israel.  Millions are praying.  That corporate cry is not being ignored.

Extremes in the media and other anti-God agencies are backfiring.  The bias against God has been in the media for decades. The difference now is the towering overreach—the blatant bias—the deranged hatred is so intense they can’t hide it.  Time was, they could shape public opinion and call it news.  In their current melt down, they report banalities and keep reporting them even after they are proven false.  The audience looks on with shock and pity and asks, “where is the truth?”

The young are turning to Christ. The great vacuum created by leftist ideology leaves young souls groping for new life.  We see young souls coming forward from all over the tent.  They come quickly, they come forcefully, they come for nothing less than Jesus.   They dispel the lies Satan is saying about this generation.  When it comes to young people, it doesn’t take long for a small fire to grow into a widespread movement.

Signs, wonders and miracles are appearing in convincing scriptural order.  Miracles are not new.  Healings have been with us all along.  The difference now is they are being demonstrated in greater measure and with stronger Bible based preaching.  This makes them more contagious to the lost and more devastating to the enemy.

There you have it…our great hope for America.  There is no denying it will be a hard battle.  But if God be for us who can be against us?  God bless you, Mario and Mechelle Murillo

ALL THAT CAN BE SHAKEN

I am walking the Streets of San Francisco.   I snap this picture and something blasted in my spirit: “all that can be shaken.” God has made His choice.  God has chosen His targets.  God will strike suddenly.

2018: the year that everything that can be shaken will be shaken.

-You companies who have used your wealth and power to persecute the righteous will now be shaken.

-You politicians—who have ruined America for decades will suddenly disappear.

-You preachers who have handled the Word of God deceitfully and cheapened Grace to finance your private life of drunkenness, whoredom, and materialism will have your gift removed in public humiliation.

God shook Himself.  He waited.  He was patient.  He gave you time to play church.  He let you have your blessing toys.  He looked away in hopes we would come to ourselves.  His blessing and his goodness did not bring you to repentance.  No, it became a license to go deeper into counterfeit Christianity.

The America church is guilty of great crimes against the Holy Spirit.  We told Him to leave and lets us grow Christianity incorporated—the worst thing we could have done.

It was a mistake—a terrible, incalculable, ongoing mistake—derailing more truth in less time than any moral plague in history.

It’s why we couldn’t stop Barack Obama—why we made no cogent case to save marriage, the unborn, or free speech—why we stood by and watched America change overnight—why we were helpless to intervene when our nation began hating everything that made her great.

Trump was only the beginning of this shaking.  He is rude, he is offensive—by design.  His words uproot and tear down.  He is a wrecking ball to international corruption.  His crudeness is a tool of a God with a plan.  He makes you queasy?  He scares you?  That’s nothing…

Just wait till they try to get him out of power.  Oh how his enemies rejoice thinking they have nailed him as a racist.  They will fail for 2 simple reasons:  He is not a racist and he is in power for a divine reason.

Watch the most powerful people attack and crumble.  Watch liberal heads explode as Trump remains—not because he is holy or even a good leader—but because he is chosen to wreak havoc on the world system.

Why now you ask?  Why has God rolled up His sleeve to root up false ministries?  Why is He accelerating His earthquakes?  I wondered.  I asked.  The answer was stunning but not surprising.  Here are the reasons:

-We are at the moment when Google, Facebook, Apple, Twitter along with leftist leaders will unfurl a cyber-iron curtain.  Christians will be marginalized.  Values that violate our Constitution and freedom of religion will be enforced.  Bible preaching will be a hate crime.  (How sickening!  Carnal ministers were toadies in this plan to drive the church underground and terrorize Israel.)

-God sees the coming mid-term elections.  Without a miracle by November, Nancy Pelosi will again be the Speaker of the House. What a plague. We are only months away from a leftist backlash that will transcend anything in our history.

God came to the inescapable decision that revival must come now or the nation is lost.  He will pour out wrath…but He will also pour out His Spirit.  Hallelujah!

Look for despised little churches—faithfully preaching the Word of God—to become centers of Glory, miracles and mass conversions.

Look for nobodies to come on the scene like a righteous tornado and roar repentance with such power that their voice will echo in the penthouses of power.

Look for campus ministries to rise because millennials will see the blatant persecution and turn Christianity into a celebrated cause.

Look for preaching to be matched with miracles—confirmation of the WORD by medically inexplicable healings.

Look for God to pull out all the stops to save America.  Look for every ministry fueled by man to fall by the wayside to make room for the voices that cannot be shaken.

Writing this blog brought me great turmoil until something happened that removed all doubt.  I walked the streets of San Francisco fighting an inner war.  Suddenly my cell phone rang.  It was my good Friend Ron McIntosh—president of Victory Bible College in Tulsa.

He asked me, “what is God telling you about 2018?”  Before I could answer him, he said, “God showed me it will be a year where everything that can be shaken, will be shaken.”

 

REVIVAL IS TOTALLY AVAILABLE

I had an uncle who could walk 40 miles an hour.  There’s no way around it. Every time he told us how far he had to walk to school it got longer and longer until, by his late 90’s, he was telling his great grandchildren it was 40 miles.  And, he made it in an hour.

The same thing happens when some aging saints and revival historians recount past revivals.  Each time they tell stories of past revivals, they become more amazing, more perfect, and better than anything we see today.

They mean well, but they do inadvertent harm.  Revival suddenly looks impossible.  Instead of inspiring people seek an outpouring, people say, “what’s the use?”

The Bible says of Jesus, “a smoking flax He will not quench.” Those words mean something inexpressively wonderful to those who seek revival: God will fan to flame even the most unpromising, smoldering ember. 

Let me put it another way: When you asked for revival from a pure motive, God said “yes.”  At that moment, God took you at your word and began the process.  The thing is most revivals die between the YES and the next step.   Because, what comes next is an act of obedience that offends the flesh.

Bill Johnson is a prime example of this.  He asked for revival, but when God said yes, Bill obeyed the next step.  When many people left Bethel Church in Redding, Bill kept obeying.  When the outpouring was misunderstood, Bill simply kept obeying.

Here’s a classic case of a mighty move of God aborted: Before the revival began he promised the evangelist they would move out of their church building to a neutral site if the move of God outgrew the church.

Not only did it outgrow the hall, it was rising to touch the entire region.  Stunning healings verified the word.  Then the pastor balked at moving the meeting…the real motive for having the meeting was to save the church from financial crisis.  It was over.

Revival is simple.  Notice I didn’t say easy—I said simple. Big difference.  You simply keep obeying in the face of every obstacle. 

Simple obedience should not be confused with self-promoted revival.  Nothing is more hollow than people trying to force a meeting to be something it is not.  I know it sounds strange—given that fact that I am trying to impress upon you the availability of revival—but I think it better not to call it revival, no matter how good it is gets.

Better to have people everywhere coming and being set free and empowered and not call it anything than labeling it revival to convince people something is happening.

Revival is available.  God gives good gifts to His children.  It’s all about what you do after He says “yes.”

ARE MEGA CHURCHES NOW A DISTRACTION TO REVIVAL?

Do you believe current church trends  will rescue our nation?  My guess is you don’t.  If you don’t, you are not alone.  A growing number of believers—many of whom will not say it out loud—question the value of attraction churches.

One day, I sat with some “hot names” in church growth in southern California.  We had talked a lot about styles of worship, preaching and marketing.  Being older than most of them, I felt a little bold.  I asked them: “Can any of you give me the name of a mega church in Los Angeles in 1906? “

Not one of them could come up with a name.  Then I said, “but you all remember the Azusa Street Revival, right?  Why is that?”  Because history remembers revivals and forgets mega churches.”  The reason is simple; revivals make history by reforming society.

Those who praise the glories of mega churches never mention how they have no impact on cultural sin.  In this golden age of mega churches, society is experiencing its greatest moral landslide.   On their watch, the number of people who claim to be atheists has doubled.  More anti-God legislation has been enacted than any other time in our history.

But do churches bear any responsibility for the moral landslide of a nation?  Charles G. Finney sure thought so!   He said, “If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are about to fall away, the pulpit is responsible.”

Some will say it is not fair to ask mega churches to reverse national destruction.   But you also can’t have it both ways.  You can’t go around extolling the wonders of these mammoth ministry centers and then say they can’t fix the nation.  If they can’t fix the only thing that needs fixing, what is the point?

But people point out, “They produce musicals as good as Broadway” Or, “They give the average person hope” These achievements ring hollow.  In a simpler time, they would be impressive.  Not today.

This is no time for entertainment.  This is no time for mild cures. Society’s condition has forced rule changes.  A demon possessed culture needs a church with power to cast out devils.  A culture reeling with unimaginable addictions needs a church were the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and the fire of God is plainly presented.

Are these churches a distraction to revival?  Let me offer this parable about distraction.  A college football team is losing their homecoming game. Badly.  Halftime is a welcome break.  The people are relieved when the marching band takes the field.

The band leader sees how much the people are enjoying the distraction.  He decides “we don’t need a second half; it is a good thing to just keep the show going.”

The lyrics of American Pie put it this way, “Now the half-time air was sweet perfume
While sergeants played a marching tune We all got up to dance Oh, but we never got the chance ‘Cause the players tried to take the field, the marching band refused to yield
Do you recall what was revealed The day the music died?”

You, dear leader of a mega church, must ask yourself, is my church the band that refuses to yield.  Is my mega ministry a distracting substitute for revival?  Am I keeping the church from starting the second half?

The Bible asks painful questions about times.  Elisha’s servant Gehazi secretly took money and clothes from General Naaman after Naaman was healed of leprosy.  Elisha asked Gehazi, “Did not my heart go with you when the man turned back from his chariot to meet you? Is it time to receive money and to receive clothing, olive groves and vineyards, sheep and oxen, male and female servants?”-2 Kings 5:26,26

In a time of mass murder, mass suicide, of hurricanes floods, and fire, is it time for pastors to parade wealth, and grant mild cures?

Haggai asked another painful question: “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins?” -Haggai 1:4  The modern application for this is simple:  Pastor, are you building a personal empire, or the Kingdom of God?  Will you allow a nation to go down in flames while you live in a bubble of false victory? 

If we can truly confess that babble has replaced the Bible—that self-enhancement has replaced self-denial –that marketing has replaced miracles—and unconditionally surrender to the Holy Spirit, God will turn our churches into fire-breathing, nation-changing powerhouses.

IS GOD DOING A SECRET WORK IN YOU?

Mario Murillo says, “Many Christians are fed up with the world system—especially the way it operates in the church.  They leave church thinking, ‘this is not it, there’s something bad wrong here.’  They can’t stomach the glitzy entertainment centers anymore…”

IS GOD DOING A SECRET WORK IN YOU?

by Mario Murillo

Many Christians are fed up with the world system—especially the way it operates in the church.  They leave church thinking, “this is not it, there’s something bad wrong here.”  They can’t stomach the glitzy entertainment centers anymore.

They are angry at ego-centric pastors with grandiose, expense and carnal visions.  They accuse them of being distracted—even derailed from their first love.   Disciples are abandoning attraction churches—something revolutionary is happening inside them.  God has started a secret work in them.

Many honest Pastors are also in divine turmoil.  The enemy condemned them for having a smaller church.   After years of blood sweat and tears their churches were battered, broken and diminished because they can’t compete with mega-mania.

And why can’t they compete? It’s because they keep their integrity!   When they see large crowds and big money pour effortlessly into churches that either hide or pervert the Gospel…it’s easy to feel like a fool for staying true.  The Bible says, “Surely I have cleansed my heart in vain, And washed my hands in innocence. For all day long I have been plagued, and chastened every morning.” Psalm 73:13,14.

However, our friend in Psalm 73 came to a great conclusion. After being bull-dozed by the success of the wicked he took action “16 When I thought how to understand this, It was too painful for me—17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God; Then I understood their end.”  Many pastor’s  hearts are crying out for more—for a miracle they can’t even describe.

When he entered the sanctuary exhausted and discouraged, the greatness of God began to overtake him.  He saw that there is no version of this battle where Satan wins.  This is a part of the secret work God is doing in pastors!

A growing number of hungry hearts agree—with all its money and crowds—the compromised church did nothing to rebuke America’s sin.  The seeker model was a house of cards against the onslaught on the unborn and marriage.  While men slept, we had millions of abortions and marriage was destroyed.  The last 10 years we have lost battle after battle in government, education and the media.  We are a hopelessly divided nation—to a large extent the pulpit is to blame.

Charles Finney said, “If there is a decay of conscience, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the public press lacks moral discernment, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the church is degenerate and worldly, the pulpit is responsible for it. If the world loses its interest in Christianity, the pulpit is responsible for it. If Satan rules in our halls of legislation, the pulpit is responsible for it. If our politics become so corrupt that the very foundations of our government are ready to fall away, the pulpit is responsible for it.”

Deep, deep in my soul where the real knowing happens—I know God is doing something new.  Every atom of my being tells me that God is doing a secret work in His people.  God is finished with hirelings.  He is drawing a remnant out of corruption and into a special, supernatural nearness to Him.  They will empty themselves of everything, every ambition will be burned out but one…to love and please Christ.

Is God doing a secret work in you?  Has God closed you in and stripped you of all enjoyment of lesser things?  Are you in divine frustration because you are going to be a part of something only God can do?

What if millions of Americans get so miserable that they cry out to God in total desperation?  What if their cry is too deep and their hunger is too great to ever be happy in a lukewarm church?  This is why the Holy Spirit is recruiting a new breed…a breed that can be trusted in an awakening.

God is doing a secret work!  He is pulling a remnant to Himself.  He is taking the prophetic core and communing with them—training them—empowering them—preparing them for one last mighty blast of power.  The Holy Spirit sees that our nation hangs by a thread.  The death-rattle is in America’s throat.   Before God allows destruction—He is going to do one last massive miracle.  What will that look like?

-People no one’s ever heard of will come to the forefront.  They will arrive with awesome power and piercing messages.  Not all of them will be regular ministers.  In fact, the majority will not leave their secular careers as God is using them.  Some will be children!

-Strange locations will house massive outpourings.  Churches that have been small for years will become ground zero of God’s presence.   People will flock in from everywhere to these centers of fire and glory.  Stunning signs and wonders will rock entire communities.  These churches will be forced to stay open 24 hours a day.

God is doing a secret work in you.  He is making you miserable to make you into a miracle.  

A.C. Valdez was a child at Azusa Street who later became an evangelist.  God showed him the future and here is what he said:  “All the electrifying adjectives in the dictionary shaken together, pressed down and running over will not begin to describe the soon-to-come, greatest outpouring of the Holy Spirit of all times-what the Bible calls “the latter rain.”  You are going to see lay members carry out an amazing ministry through gifts of the Holy Spirit.  There will be wholesale cures of “incurable” conditions, healings of the blind, deaf, dumb, and handicapped, and creative miracles that will strain the imagination.  For those born without eyes ears, fingers arms or legs-or those who have lost them through disease or accidents- God will make new ones. Many astonishing miracle swill happen to bring on an international Christian breakthrough.”  I believe A.C. Valdez is not talking about a time far off in the future.. he is talking about now because, my friend it is now or never.

Think about it.  You are going to attend a conference, seminar or convention this year.  Choose the one that will change your life and equip you to change the world.   The convention is free, but you must have a ticket.  You can print out your ticket right now by using the link below.  Do it now.  Space is limited.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/living-proof-world-convention-tickets-36123306783

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Yes, you’re right. Revival is now impossible

 

Yes, revival is now impossible.  Everything thing the pessimistic Christians say is true. They are right about our national morals, division and the deadness of the church  but they are forgetting one thing about revival…

Revival struck London through John Wesley when it was impossible.   One out every seven houses in London was a house of prostitution.  More people were attending seances than church.  Nearly 100,000 children lived like animals.  The London times had not mentioned Christmas for decades…not even once.

The Methodist revival under Wesley turned England into the world’s missionary leader.

Revival struck Kentucky when it was unthinkable.  This was the most lawless state in the union.  There was no police.  Every criminal on the run headed for Kentucky.  Murder, rape, and alcoholism were pandemic.  Revival flipped Kentucky so violently that it became the most zealously Christian state in America.

The early twentieth century was a far more skeptical era than today.  The blush of Darwinism and Marxism was so feverish that it was a foregone conclusion that Christianity would go away altogether. Scientists declared the age of reason and solemnly assured us that religion would be gone by the 1920s.

raw bravery

Imagine in that atmosphere, if you were to have said in 1906, “a one eyed black man is going to rent a dingy horse livery on Azusa Street in downtown Los Angeles and start a movement that will engulf nearly 600 million people worldwide.”  

The point is that revivals are impossible…and when it looks totally impossible they happen.

You should also know what the church was preaching in those darkest moments before awakenings began.  Pulpits were filled with pessimists who instead of rebuking the despair joined in the chorus.  They declared the day of revival to be over!  Even that did not stop God.

How is it that revival can strike without warning in the most unpromising times and grow in the hardest soil?  The answer is that when darkness is intense we tend look at the wrong indicators.  It’s not that there are no warnings of revival it is simply that we do not know them when we see them because fear is so loud.

Look at today.  Do you see any signs of revival?  Most would say absolutely not.  They would say all of the same things that people have said before every outpouring of God.   The times are too evil.

That is the argument today.  We legalized gay marriage, drugs and we toy with Islam.  Our leaders are loons that are finding the best ways to drive us into extinction.  Churches are closing and 1,000 ministers are leaving the ministry every month.  You know the rest because you have heard a hundred times.

Atheists are boasting that the whole world in general is becoming secular and anti-supernatural.  The facts are just the opposite.  It is a very religious world, far more religious than it was 50 years ago.

Consider these statistics from sociologist Rodney Stark:

— 81 percent claim to belong to an organized religious faith, and most of the rest report engaging in religious activities such as prayer or making offerings to the gods in various “folk religion” temples.

— 74 percent say religion is an important part of their daily lives.

— 50 percent report they have attended a place of worship or religious service in the past seven days.

-In very few nations do as many as five percent claim to be atheists, and only in China, Vietnam, and South Korea do they exceed 20 percent.

-Furthermore, in every nook and cranny left by organized faiths, all manner of unconventional spiritual and mystical practices are booming. There are more occult healers than medical doctors in Russia, 38 percent of the French believe in astrology, 35 percent of the Swiss agree that “some fortune tellers really can foresee the future,” and nearly everyone in Japan is careful to have their new car blessed by a Shinto priest.

IMG_0619

To be sure, little of this is Christian but it is undeniable that the waters of supernatural hunger are being stirred worldwide.

Another sign is the evil of people itself.   For example, Saul of Tarsus was at the peak of his terrorism when he was violently converted. What no one but God knew was the growing desperation inside of this soon to be Paul the Apostle.   Societies are often at their worst right before revival.

What we do not want to do is miss revival when it hits!

Dark times can absorb our faith in the power of God.  Many believers find themselves in a condition that is truly worse than they ever imagined.  Pangs of fear grip men of God who were once lions in the pulpit.  We invent doctrines that fit our disappointment.  We build ministries based on our lowered expectations.

You need a healthy respect for the power of dark times to rob us of faith.  It has happened to the best of us.

500 people saw Jesus Christ ascend into the clouds.  Think about that.  In the face of such absolute proof that Jesus was the Son of God, how could they ever doubt?

As He ascended he told them to wait in Jerusalem for the promise of the Holy Spirit.  Surely they would wait…right?  Astonishingly, only 120 were still waiting in the upper room on the Day of Pentecost.  How is it possible in the face of so great an assurance that they would falter and abandon their posts?

Their world was filled with sudden terror from a wicked king, oppression from religious leaders, and tyranny from the Roman occupiers.  Their daily grind absorbed their zeal for the promises of God.

Do not be like the 380 people who missed one of the greatest moments in history.  Here are two things that you need to confess and say to your spirit so that you will not leave the upper room.

  1. Either it was always true or it was never true. Times do not alter truth. A lack of money does not change God’s word about prosperity.  Sickness does not nullify the fact of God’s healing power.  The evil of men does not overrule the supremacy of Christ.   If God promised you something, these dark times cannot stop their fulfillment.
  2. This will be like one of them. 1 Samuel 17: 4 But David said to Saul, “Your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, 35 I went out after it and struck it, and delivered the lamb from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught it by its beard, and struck and killed it. 36 Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.”

youth revivalIt is easy to say that evil is more intense and sophisticated than ever before.  Neither Saul, nor Israel had ever faced anything like Goliath before.  David said that it did not matter; this new threat would have the same outcome as all of the old threats.

Jesus is telling us to wait for the power that is about to break out no matter what.   Does revival look totally impossible to you?  Don’t worry, they all look that way until they happen.