Genuine conversion results in a holy life
"He will convict the world concerning sin, and concerning righteousness, and concerning judgment..."
There have been many prophecies about a coming move of God that will eclipse all previous ones. Most discussions revolve around the glory and presence of God moving in the land. The desire for revival is at an all time high.
Though much is being said and done, it seems to be mostly prophetic activity. The one basic ingredient that is lacking, and seldom spoken of, is true repentance. This requires a total breaking down of the heart, otherwise we naturally go along in "Christian selfishness", with all our activity oriented to ourself.
I'm more burdened than ever before over sin in the Body of Christ. In ministry times I find most Christians seem to be seeking a blessing in the meetings. The prayers revolve around their needs and not God's hearts desire. They experience the power and presence of God, yet leave with unyielded lives. Many Christians know there are issues between them and the Lord and are willing to leave them unchanged. Sometimes if I bring up the state of their heart during ministry they will say "God will change my heart". In the midst of all the Christian activity there's no sense of God's desire for true righteousness.
Out in the community as I work I encounter people who are warm to Jesus, but see the church as irrelevant, or worse... Here are some of the issues I see standing between us and revival.
1. Power Without Repentance
Jesus warned those who have anointing but work iniquity. How many there are in the church today!
"Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy by thy name, and by thy name cast out demons, and by thy name do many mighty works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." -Matt 7:22,23
2. A Back to front Gospel - a problem we have created!
Look at the gospel the church preached.
Luke 24:47 and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name unto all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
Acts 3:19 Repent ye therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that so there may come seasons of refreshing from the presence of the Lord;..
Genuine Conversion Results in a Holy Life
Away with this garbage of continuing in sin but saying we are "immune" because of Christ. Sin's power to reign is actually gone from us because of the cross. (Romans 6) Because of this we are warned not to live in sin. We choose!
Can we imagine the judgment day, and on this side is one who sinned not knowing Christ, and on the other is a Christian who continues in the same sin as the first man. Will the Lord be unjust? Will the cross be a mockery? Or does the Lord expect real righteousness to be the reward of His suffering?
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth unto his own flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth unto the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap eternal life." Galatians 6:7,8
The Changed Heart is Man's Responsibility, But God's Activity
Most Christians are waiting for the Lord to change their hearts. God is waiting for us to "rend our hearts" and to "make for ourself a new heart"
Joel 2:12- "Yet even now, saith Jehovah, turn ye unto me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: 13 and rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto Jehovah your God; for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abundant in loving kindness..."
New Heart Ingredients
a) Conviction of sin, righteousness and judgment by the Holy Spirit. Only this will break into the deep levels needed for repentance. This requires praying Christians and righteous preaching. Surely if the Lord is anointing us with power for healing He will bring this clear promise of the Spirit.
"He will convict the world concerning sin, and concerning righteousness, and concerning judgment" John 16:8
Yes, we need a mighty revival. As I check out the old time revivals and go right back to the preaching of the Bible I see a common denominator. The preaching of the righteous demands of a Holy God, accompanied by mighty convictions of the Holy Spirit. This produces deep conversions and holy, power filled living. This, and ONLY this, impacts and changes the community with the Kingdom of God.