Expect Great Things!
By W. C. Moore
In Joel 2:23 we read that the Lord "will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month." Therefore we can look for a doubling up in revival power in these last days – for rain is symbolic of an outpouring of God's Spirit, as we read in Isaiah 44:3, "I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground: I will pour My Spirit upon thy seed."
Jesus says, concerning the thirsty one who comes to Him and drinks, "He that believeth on Me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water, (But this spake He of the Spirit…)" (John 7:37-39).
Elisha is a type of the church, and he would be content with nothing short of "a double portion" of the Spirit (2 Kgs. 2:9-10, 13). Many of God's people today are going through severe testings. After Job went through all his testings, and finally humbled himself and got rid of that streak of self-righteousness which under the severe pressure of his time of adversity, came to the surface, and when he had prayed for (not against) those tormenting friends of his – we find that "the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before" (Job 42:10). (Read also Job 40:1-8 and 42:1-9).
For Us, Too
God is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34). He will give us the double portion – "the former rain and latter rain in the first month" – as we meet the conditions. In John 14:12 Jesus promised that the believer should do greater works than He Himself did. To those of us today who are believing for a great revival, the Lord is saying, "According to your faith be it unto you" (Matt. 9:29).
He wants us to believe. He is the author and the finisher of our faith (Heb. 12:2). It is the devil's business to try to make us doubt. God wants us to believe for "great and mighty things" (Jer. 33:3).
God Says "Ask"
God's gifts must yet be asked for (Matt. 7:7-8). The Holy Ghost is a "Gift" from God (Acts 2:33, 38), but God's plan is that we ask in faith and with importunity for this Gift of the Holy Spirit: "If ye then being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him" (Luke 11:1-12).
It is not nearly enough to "believe" in an offhand way. Even after God has promised a thing, we must pray through for it, not because God is in any sense reluctant to give us what He has promised, but prayer prepares us to receive what God wants to give us.
Prayer is God's plan, and it is right! If God poured out His great blessings without our earnest asking and seeking, we would not appreciate what He does for us. "I will yet for this be inquired of…to do it" (Ezek. 36:37).
God promised rain (1 Kgs. 18:1), but we see Elijah down upon the earth with his face between his knees praying through for what God had promised (1 Kgs. 18:42-46). Jacob believed God, but he had to apply God's promises until he prevailed (Gen. 32:24-27).
A beautiful and striking type of the mighty flood tide of revival power that God plans to send upon the earth in these last days is found in an experience of David. There came a time when David longed for a drink from Bethlehem's well (2 Sam. 23:13-17). Now David did not force any of his men to seek that water for him. He did not even suggest it. But he had some real soldiers in his army to whom, to know the desire of their king, was to set themselves to fulfill that desire even at the risk of their lives.
Elijah did not force Elisha to seek "a double portion." In fact, Elijah himself sought to discourage Elisha as it were, saying unto him, "Tarry here" (2 Kgs. 2:1-15). The sons of the prophets tried to engage Elisha in prophetic discussions, but Elisha would not stop to even talk to them. If Elisha had not caught a vision of the mighty work God wanted him to do, he might have remained behind with the sons of the prophets, and after the translation of Elijah, probably they would have elected Elisha president of the School of the Prophets, "Doctor Elisha, President and Founder."
But no! God needed a prophet in those days, and Elisha paid the price and went through till the mantle of Elijah was in his hands. Praise God!
When Jesus, our Lord, was carrying forward His mighty work, and when His disciples said unto Him, "All men seek for Thee," (Mark 1:37) – He did not look for further honor from men, nor did He stop there and let them build a temple or a monument to His popularity, but in humbleness of mind, and in obedience to His Father's will, He said, "Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also: for therefore came I forth" (Mark 1:38).
Going back now to David's experience, when he longed for a drink from Bethlehem's well, we find that three of his mighty men break through the host of the Philistines. At the risk of their lives they went (2 Sam. 23:17); and at the risk of their lives they brought the water back to David (1 Chr. 11:19), and so David would not drink it but poured it out unto the Lord.
Jesus, our Shepherd King, desires that we break through the powers of darkness (Eph. 6:12), and get this water – this outpouring of the Holy Spirit – in order that He may "pour it forth" on all flesh (Joel 2:28; Rev. 5:6). Just as the three mighty men brought the water to David, so we must seek revival for God's glory.
As the revival for which we have been praying starts, let us not get our eyes on the person or persons whom God uses, but on God Himself, praising Him, not praising people. And as persecution comes (2 Tim. 3:12), let us heed the command of the Lord and rejoice (Matt. 5:10-12).