Why are they God’s secret weapon? The answer lies in what happens when a nation gorges on sin. Nothing can protect the sin sick soul from disgust, nausea, and the unholy hangover.
A convicted heart can reach the point where a slick church concert, outfitted with lights and fog, or a canned motivational spiel, can repulse them, just as much as the sin they are trying to escape.
A soul soaked in the sludge of our time, can yearn to collapse at a simple wooden altar, sob deep tears of remorse, and welcome the warm hand of a true pastor on their shoulder.
How can a small church be God’s secret weapon? I discovered how when I read something about the birth of Christ. Matthew Henry said, “If the Son of God must be brought into the world, one might justly expect that he should be received with all the ceremony possible, that crowns and sceptres should immediately have been laid at his feet, and that the high and mighty princes of the world should have been his humble servants; such a Messiah as this the Jews expected, but we see none of all this; he came into the world, and the world knew him not; nay, he came to his own, and his own received him not.”
It was a token of their sin that the Jews believed such lavish pomp and circumstance would greet the birth of Jesus. Are we no less wicked when we assume revival will be born on gleaming campuses, amid varied enticements, extracted from the wisdom of fast food marketing?
We can miss the birth of an awakening just as much as they missed the birth of Christ. America has many forgotten Bethlehems. There are many hidden Mangers where revival can, and will be born.
Why the small church? Maybe because a special brokenness dwells there. Think of the couples who faithfully lead undersized churches. They have done all they know to do. They have been called fools for passing on the gimmicks that might have grown their crowd. They watched families leave them for the greener pastures of regional churches.
Sunday after Sunday, they sigh. and once again call up the courage to lead their people with integrity and patience. They pray and see no great change. However, God has shown me that when they least expect it the fire will fall. A supernatural signal will go out. And because they know no one but God did it they will leave their hand off of moving of the Holy Spirit.
Revival can come to any size church. There is nothing wrong with a big church that got big the right way, and for the right reason. And no church will stay small in revival.
Why is a small church God’s secret weapon? Because it is the last thing Satan expects. Even though he reads this, he will still be totally unprepared.
Satan is flooding the world with evil while Christians have grown passive. Believers are ignorant of what God expects them to do to stand against the torrent of wickedness.
Shallow, flattering teaching is the perfect greenhouse gas. It’s fumes dull reality. It kills natural urgency. Taking a stand becomes a distant fantasy.
Satan has sold the church fool’s gold. Instead of taking up weapons mighty to the tearing down of strongholds, we pursue money, cheap grace, and celebrity.
Our faith has grown flabby. We don’t know our weapons. We don’t know our authority. We don’t know our marching orders. We don’t know what to say to this generation. Most of all, we are ignorant about what is right around the corner.
Peter recognized when government crossed the line. Acts 4: 19 But Peter and John replied, “Which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! 20 As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
He also understood what to do when government tries to ban the Gospel: “Acts 5: 28 saying, “Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!”
29 But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.”
They are coming after your freedom. They will force feed your children the Antichrist agenda. That is…unless we wake up to our purpose and destiny. I am calling you out for special power in this hour.
If you are finally ready, then do these things:
1. You must be filled or refilled with the Holy Spirit. You must have fire, or you must have fresh fire. The courage to face the onslaught of hatred that will be thrown at you can never be met by human power. To say what you need to say, to obey when you need to obey can’t come from human motivation. You must have the same Spirit that fueled world-changing saints in all times. God never meant for anyone to preach or lead without a clear baptism of the Holy Spirit.
2. You must flow in signs and wonders. Our culture is beyond words. They must see proof of the power of God. God means for you to provide that proof. The authority you need won’t come cheaply or instantly. (Read my blog on the price of God’s miracle working power https://wp.me/p1vrzp-53e
3. Get ready to do something for God that will boggle your mind. God is selecting people and working in them for unmatched power to attack evil. Habakkuk 1: 5 “Look among the nations and watch—Be utterly astounded! For I will work a work in your days Which you would not believe, though it were told you.”
He is creating people who can turn the tide of wickedness. He doesn’t care about your age or your education. He searches for someone who is travailing over the evil and will die without power and purpose. They want to be in the fight—they want to be in the thick of it. Isaiah 6: 8 says, “Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”
4. Prepare to pray in a way you never imagined. God is pulling you out of the damaged religious crowd into special intimacy with him. You are not going to pray like before. E.M Bounds said, “To say prayers in a decent, delicate way is not heavy work. But to pray really, to pray till hell feels the ponderous stroke, to pray till the iron gates of difficulty are opened, till the mountains of obstacles are removed, till the mists are exhaled and the clouds are lifted, and the sunshine of a cloudless day brightens-this is hard work, but it is God’s work, and man’s best labor.”
What do all of these things I am asking you to do have in common? Every one of them involves a leap out of dead church life. They are a courageous declaration of war on the godless ideologies that are destroying our nation. They are an irrevocable decision to be in the middle of God’s greatest acts in history.
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.”
God is doing a secret work in our day. He is raising up a hungry people who are growing more and more dissatisfied with the fleshly, worldly system as it now exists—even in the church.
These God-hungry people are saying among themselves, “This is not it. There is something more. The bigness and the sensationalism of it all has left us empty and dry. We want more. More than entertainment. More than big, showy buildings. More than a shallow celebrity gospel. We want deeper values. We want to see Jesus. We want spotless robes of righteousness. We want to go back to doing things in total dependence on God.”
I see it all over the nation today — disillusioned Christians searching for reality. The people in the pew are beginning to fast and pray. They are the ones who now weep between the porch and the altar. And, they are crying out for more depth and more of eternal values from the pulpit. If the minister of their church goes on in some egocentric way, pursuing expensive dreams, they will go out looking for a place where their deepest spiritual needs will be met.
I know it to be a fact that numerous ministers share my own desperate hunger for a deeper work of God in the church and ministry today. There seems to be a secret underground network of men of God who are stripping themselves down, humbling themselves, and getting back into the secret closet of prayer. Recently I have met a number of ministers, of various denominations, who are praying up to 6 and 8 hours a day. They are fasting. Some of these dear men of God grieve over conditions in the church today. God is revealing to all praying people that a glorious new work of the Spirit is about to break forth. God is going to shake everything that can be shaken. He will tear down the old political, backslidden, ecclesiastical system. He will disown the formal, super-church structure. He will chase out of His presence all who are engaging in self-promoting ministries.
Be honest, saints of God. Are you really satisfied with the religious system today, and especially in your church? Some are. But most are not getting their needs met. I believe we have gotten off the track of true spirituality. The spiritual leanness of so many Christians today is a direct result of getting into the flesh — trying to do kingdom work in our own power, with worldly methods. Our values are becoming perverted.
Shame on us! We are substituting temporal values for eternal ones. We have evangelists and teachers who specialize in telling believers how much God owes them. Material blessings are magnified, spiritual ones minimized. According to some, it is our right to be rich, successful, and immune to all pain.
These teachers point to themselves as examples of prosperity. “Look at me,” it is said, “I have proved the promises. I live well. I am never sick — I have no unpaid bills. I drive the best cars. I live in the finest home. It works for me, so believe as I do and you can have what I have.”
Beloved, how much of that teaching will stand up before the judgment seat of Christ? There is a growing inner knowledge in me that most of our modern, self-centered teaching is going to be consumed before the flaming eyes of the Son of God.
John, in his vision of the Son of God, saw an awesome sight.
“…his head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire…” (Rev. 1:14).
John goes on to say,
“…I fell at his feet as dead…” (v.17).
Will any of us, as teachers and evangelists, be able to stand before those piercing eyes of flaming fire? Can any Christian look Him in the eyes? No ego can withstand His gaze. No self-centered dreams can go unexposed. All secret sin will be exposed as a terrible abomination in His sight.
All the things we have accumulated will burn. All the great works we have done for Him, with such zeal and sweat, will they also burn?
How important is what you are doing to God’s kingdom? God can give you the desire of your heart, but send leanness to your soul. God assisted Israel in their desire to have a king. But He later disciplined them for their selfish motives.
Are you in some kind of competitive race? Are you doing things for God just to keep up with others? In eternity, looking back—how really necessary will it all be then?
Children of God, what is the good of what you and I are doing? Do we have motives based on eternal values? If we truly believe the end of all things is upon us, what should we be doing about purging our values? What is it going to take to wake us up and get us out of the drift toward ease and comfort?
I confess to you that it has taken years for me to live only for eternal values. I grieve when I think back of the time and money I wasted trying to build something tangible for God. I wanted something people could see. How important I thought those buildings were to God’s kingdom. I convinced myself, “God deserves the best.” He does—but not in bricks, mortar, and steel—He deserves the best of our time and yieldedness. Thank God for the day the Spirit revealed to me how shallow my values were! I spent 20 years planning programs, building buildings, running all over the world trying to show God how important to His kingdom I was. All the while my reputation grew as a minister of faith and vision. Yet, after each new project, I felt a letdown. No sooner was one building finished, and I was already planning another. I was an idea-man for God. I had more ideas than any preacher in America. Ideas on how to evangelize. How to organize New Testament programs. The programs and ideas were successful enough to entrap me and keep me on the treadmill of busy-ness.
But all along my heart yearned for more. I knew the blessing was not in building. Not in some well-planned scheme to reach the lost. Not in bigness, and not in activity. I discovered the hard way, that the glory of God, the peace and joy of the Spirit, was in being stripped down, emptied, and made totally weak. God had to expose all my values. He turned His flaming eyes on my soul and showed me I had better reject my old way of doing things, or be lost in a maze of self-imposed activity.
Now, my greatest joy is waiting upon Him for direction. I have made time to be alone with Him, and have prepared my soul to abide in His quiet presence. He is letting me sense what the Spirit is saying to this generation. The more He empties me, the more He fills me with a desire to depend only on Him for everything. I see now that all along the Lord was waiting for me to lay down all my plans, all my ambitions, and be given over to Him as a bondslave. The sweat is now gone – the pressure is off. He is recreating all my values.
The Final Shaking
What will happen when God begins to shake everything that can be shaken? When all false values tumble and earthly dreams and plans lose their meaning?
Sadly, many of God’s children are going to end up bewildered and confused. As the world moves into the era of economic collapse – when persecution falls even upon civilized nations – when governments are convulsing and tottering on the brink of total collapse — how many Christians will survive the test?
A lot of God’s people are going to wonder where they are. Ministers who are caught up in the trap of human vision will leave the ministry confused, all their work to no avail. Multitudes will be asking, “What’s it all about? What’s happening? What does the future hold? Where are we? Who can tell us the mind of God?”
We are now moving swiftly into what we know as the end time. We had better be in possession of a heavenly vision of holiness and humility. The testing time is coming down upon us with lightning speed. It is going to take more than a doctrine or a particular teaching to see us through. We are going to have to really know the Lord in His fullness. We had better have our eyes on eternal values. Only spiritual things are going to remain. Only spiritual people will understand what is happening and not faint. We must be linked up with the mind of the Spirit so we will not be thrown by the radical changes that are coming. We must bring ourselves, to the place we have nothing to lose. We need to walk away from all the junk in our lives — we are going to lose it all anyhow.
How much of God do you possess in this final hour of disintegration and fear? How earthly are you? How transitory are your desires? Have your values been sifted and purged by the Spirit of almighty God? How much of the world interests you — how much time is consumed in chasing after things that don’t matter now?
You will know when the Spirit is calling you out of the shallow Christianity about you. You will know when the Lord is wanting to touch you in a supernatural way. You will know when He is calling you out of the ordinary. He will stir your nest. An unexplainable divine restlessness will come upon you. You will become disinterested in what you have been doing. All your successes will leave you feeling empty and unfulfilled. Nothing that you have or do will meet the need in you for reality. You will sense that a very deep need in you has not yet been met — questions that have never been answered. A shadow of dissatisfaction will be cast over your entire life.
That is a mark of God’s dealing with you in a supernatural way, trying to get you to turn loose of all that you hold dear. It is His way of showing you that your needs are really spiritual and not physical.
You will feel His magnetic pull back to prayer — back to spiritual hunger, to broken-ness and self-emptying. Soon, you will be touching those satisfying eternal values and your soul will cry out, “This is what I’ve been wanting all along. He has taken away the earthly and replaced it with the spiritual.”
Saints, the key word is hunger. He has promised to fill the hungry heart. I have never been so hungry for God. That hunger almost overwhelms me at times. Every waking hour my heart reaches out to Him. Because His thoughts are always on my mind, the things of the world have lost their value. I see things as Paul did — nothing but the dung of this world. I am becoming a nobody—it feels so good.
Do you also sense this call to a deeper walk with God? Is your soul hungry for more of the Spirit in your life? If so, end the civil war in you — by yielding everything you have to the Master. The misery goes the very moment you surrender all to Him. You can know true peace and happiness the moment you quit trying to be somebody. Want nothing but Jesus, and your life will take on a new meaning.
Don’t Waste Another Hour
My greatest grief is that it took so long for me to get out of God’s way. I wasted years doing things simply out of compassion. I was spiritually blind, not knowing that God must clearly direct every step I take. I had an international pulpit — preaching to thousands — with crowded altars. Thank God He showed me there was much more. The numbers and the crowds meant nothing. I wanted to see people get deeper into the Lord. I wanted nothing more to do with shallow decisions. God had to totally change my way of thinking, and now, like Gideon, I know that big is not always best.
Don’t let it happen to you. Take stock of your life and values. Shut yourself up with God alone in the secret closet. Pray diligently for spiritual hunger. Ask God to give you a spirit of sorrow for wasting so much time. Pray for a greater desire for His Word. Pray for a broken heart. Pray for a purging and a purifying work in your life. Then get ready to be cast into the fire of testing.
“…I will purge the sons of Levi…” (Mal. 3:3)
I can tell you it’s worth it! The purging will not seem joyous, but rather grievous. But you will soon glorify the Lord for the results in your life. All the anxiety will be gone. All worldly ambition will die. Your spiritual eyes will be opened to truth. The Spirit will give you revelation knowledge. You will exchange the riches of this world for the true riches of Christ Jesus. You will wake up each morning with an over-flowing joy. Your soul will cry out “I found what my soul has been longing for. Rest–beautiful rest in my Lord.”
You can then say with David, the Psalmist — “In his presence is there is fullness of joy; at his right hand there are pleasures forevermore…” (Ps.16:11).
“…for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ So then everyone of us shall give an account of himself to God…”(Rom. 14:10-12).
“…The end of all things is at hand; be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer…” (I Pet. 4:7).
“… The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light…” (Rom. 13:12).
“For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if any man build, upon this foundation gold stones, wood, hay, stubble; every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire…” (I Cor. 3: 11-15).
You can accuse me of writing this because of the widespread abuse of alcohol by ministers—but that is not the case. You can call me judgmental and again you would be mistaken. I am certain I will be attacked by those who believe I have gone too far and by those who believe I have not gone far enough. Nevertheless, I must obey God.
I believe the Holy Spirit is raising this issue because America is teetering on the edge of disaster. We can all see that the Bible, Christianity, Israel, and American values—the values that keep us alive—are under an all-out attack. Time is running out for our nation.
Jesus is on the hunt for special vessels. He is looking for someone to demonstrate power on a level we have not yet seen. To have authority for miracles that are beyond what we have seen or heard.
I am convinced God is calling those who would be excellent, and powerful in the Spirit, to stop drinking alcohol…including beer. Not out of legalism—not out of condemnation but because of this one phrase: IT IS NOT FOR YOU.
Proverbs 31: 4,5 tells us, “It is not for kings, Lemuel—it is not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer, lest they drink and forget what has been decreed, and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.”
Wait, what? Does it really say If you would be a king, or a ruler, then wine and beer are not for you? Yes, it does.
Can you drink? Of course, you can. You can live in the elementary level that says it’s okay so long as you don’t get drunk. However, in this hour—if you want all that God has for you—it is not for you.
Fine, be a casual drinker, but if you yearn for a deeper level of power and true revival—it is not for you.
It may be okay for others, but if you want to see the notable miracles—the ones that quake cities and alter generations—then it is not for you.
The clue to this new call to a higher personal purity is seen in the next verses: Proverbs 31:6 “Let beer be for those who are perishing, wine for those who are in anguish! 7 Let them drink and forget their poverty and remember their misery no more.”
Is the Bible telling us that alcohol is for death and misery? At the very least that should give us pause to ask, “why am I drinking?” Or, “do I really need this.” And finally, “what am I trying to prove by taking this liberty?” If you find you are defending it beyond reason, then you must consider the specter of a drinking habit growing out of control.
Many who oppose ministers who drink do make this salient point: “If one of my congregation is a recovering alcoholic and sees me having a glass of wine in public, it could trigger them to start drinking again. I may be able to handle it, but they can’t.”
While I totally agree with that, the real issue goes much deeper. That good argument does not address private drinking. You must give it up for Christ not public appearance.
Of course, there are many other issues we need to cover including nutrition, wholesome conversation, financial integrity, sexual purity to name a few…but right now, the enemy is capitalizing on the subtly of alcohol to plateau and even destroy the power of vessels of God.
You know you want power. You know you yearn for a greater presence of God on your life. Don’t let a crude habit sabotage your destiny. Remember, a real disciple gives up what they want now, for what they want most.
Trump is being investigated. They claim he colluded with the Russians. They claim he rigged an election. Here is the hair pulling part of this: We now know—without an investigation—Hillary did both of those things.
Revival or Civil War?
By Mario Murillo
After months of digging, the special prosecutor has turned up nothing linking Trump to any Russian, to any rigging, to any…anything. Yet, investigators continue to claim they are about to find something.
Meanwhile, a gigantic something—the mastodon in the room—is ignored. They simply refuse to investigate Hillary Clinton. Hillary is so smug, that to this hour, she continues to accuse Trump collusion and rigging.
What has possessed the political elite to alter reality? What mental defect has gripped the fake new media that they can do this without any pang of conscience? How can they disregard the destruction they are heaping on America? The focus of this blog is not Hillary but how the treatment of this situation highlights our moral disaster. The Bible tells us how we got to this point.
Jesus said, “they strain at a gnat and swallow a camel.” But another Bible verse hits even closer to home. Isaiah 5:20 “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!”
I bring up Hillary because she is symptomatic of what is killing the American soul. It is a madness that is bringing us to the brink of civil war. Indeed, Isaiah was warning those who call evil good and good evil of something very perilous: After you sin long enough, God judges you with a mind that reverses right and wrong, good and evil and yes, sanity and insanity.
You need to read all of Isaiah Chapter 5. It is an eerie parallel to America right now. Matthew Henry said about Isaiah 5, “In this chapter the prophet, in God’s name, shows the people of God their transgressions, even the house of Jacob their sins, and the judgments which were likely to be brought upon them for their sins…Covetousness, and greediness of worldly wealth, which shall be punished with famine (v. 8-10) 2. Rioting, revelling, and drunkenness (v. 11, v. 12, v. 22, v. 23), which shall be punished with captivity and all the miseries that attend it (v. 13-17). Presumption in sin, and defying the justice of God (v. 18, v. 19). Confounding the distinctions between virtue and vice, and so undermining the principles of religion (v. 20). Self-conceit (v. 21). Perverting justice, for which, and the other instances of reigning wickedness among them, a great and general desolation in threatened, which should lay all waste (v. 24, v. 25), and which should be effected by a foreign invasion.”
I am convinced that America is down to 2 options: Revival or Civil war. Yes, you heard me right. Millions of Americans staunchly support Trump—though they have been beaten into silence they are fervent in their commitment to our president.
They see injustice not only directed at Trump, but at their faith, their values, freedoms and their loved ones. They understand political correctness to be the cancer of our times.
They see a small, vocal, activist cadre controlling most of what we see and hear. They see free speech fading—they see morals vanishing—they see tyranny as Antifa is declaring violent warfare on American citizens.
With all my might, in this explosive hour, I am compelling everyone who will listen that revival is something that should be uniting every Christian. The urgency of national repentance cannot be over stated—neither can the power of God.
What I am trying to say, in this blog, is that the mindset, that reverses light and darkness, good and evil has overtaken us because of our wickedness.
If we do not harness the anger of millions fed up with all of the perversion of truth—if we do not channel it into a moral awakening—it will lead to civil disruption on a scale too terrible to describe.
Let us drop all of our foolish distractions and provoke fervent prayer—church gatherings full of fire and love, pulpits peopled by preachers who thunder unvarnished truth and let the chips fall where they may.
Time is almost up. A fuse is about to be lit. God help us to light the right one.