H. E. Alexander : Revivals in the Bible
A series of bible studies on revivals. Translated from the French “Les réveils dans la Bible” version located on the Action Biblique Suisse website.
For this message I have chosen a text from the book of Acts: “For the promise is to you, to your children, and to all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God shall call” (2 :39). I do not intend to go into all the details of Pentecost, but rather that we let ourselves be carried away by the waves of the torrent of grace which has been flowing since then. My wish is that we can always throw ourselves into it without ever looking back. Neither do we want to seek the childhood gifts of the Church of Christ; it would be to generate quarrels between brothers, and to nourish illusions about ourselves. This would undermine the true work of the Holy Spirit, for the apostle Paul himself declares in the Epistle where he deals with the disorders of the Church of Corinth: “When I was a child, I spoke like a child … when I became a man, I made childish things disappear” (1 Corinthians 13:1 1 ). But we want to enter into the life of the Holy Spirit which the day of Pentecost has made possible, to understand what are our privileges and responsibilities brought to light on that day, and to walk in the way laid down in order to accomplish the works prepared by Christ.
Summary: The whole story brings out our Lord's warning: “Do you not say that there are still four months until the harvest? Behold, I say unto you, lift up your eyes, and behold the fields which are already ripefor harvest” (John 4:35). Everything is absolutely flawless in the service of the Lord Jesus and in this simple and beautiful New Testament scene. The power of life that is in the Son triggers something perfect! The conversation with the woman of Samaria, the words addressed to the disciples, the contact with the men of Sychar, everything bears the divine mark.
Summary: Jonah and Daniel, two Old Testament men mentioned by the Lord in His teaching (cf. Luke 11:29-30 and Matthew 24:15), were especially targeted by unbelievers. My goal is not to dwell on these theologians who have sown doubt, but to understand the lesson that emerges from the revival at Nineveh. The book of Jonah is one of the most unusual in the Old Testament.
Summary: The revival in Jerusalem under Ezra exhibits two characteristics recorded twice in Scripture (cf. 2 Chronicles 36:22-23 and Ezra 1:1-4). 1 King Cyrus of Persia received direction from God in heaven. 2 Cyrus undertook construction work.
Summary: If we speak of revival in 1 Kings 18, it is in the sense of a direct intervention of God in a desperate situation. This study brings us to the subject of the laws which govern a revival. It is sometimes forgotten that such a setting in motion of spiritual powers increases the inner tensions between flesh and spirit in awakened Christians. Deceptions and counterfeits often come on the heels of the work of God. To preserve the action of the Spirit of God, one must first have a solid biblical instruction and then a definite objective: the evangelization of the world.
“When you hear the sound of footsteps in the tops of the mulberry trees, then make haste, for it is the Lord who goes before you to defeat the army of the Philistines” (2 Samuel 5: 24 ). If I speak of revival in this valley, it is because of a timely intervention of God in a battle. This verse of Scripture is often quoted to demonstrate in a few words the secret work of God before his open and definitive action. Every revival is preceded by warning signs—characterized here by the sound of footsteps—which can only be recognized by genuine, Spirit-filled Christians who are sensitive to the things of God.